Netflix has released a 358-page multimedia art book dedicated to "Nimona".

Earlier this summer, Netflix released the animation feature Nimona, one of the most ambitious and visually bold works that streamers have ever been involved in. After the Annecy premiere of Nimona, the critics' reaction was overwhelmingly positive, and the film pulled in a strong audience number at its Netflix debut.

Today, streamers have released a book multimedia art for movies. It was put together by the film's production designer Aidan Sugano and Cartoon Brew was given exclusive access to the document. The book, which spans more than 350 pages, is a treasure trove of concept art, character design, background, vfx breakdown, music and commentary from artists who worked on the film, including directors Nick Bruno and Troy Quang and the creator of the original Nemona webcomic, ND Stevenson. To access the art book:次の場所に移動します Or click on the image below.

Nemona's production story is as dramatic as any of the plot points of the film itself. We documented it over the years and recently talked with the director of the film about the winding road to completion. To summarize briefly, when Disney acquired the studio's parent company, Fox Entertainment, shut down Blue Sky and canceled production, Nemona was doing well in production at Blue Sky Studios. Eventually, several members of the Nimona team contacted Annapurna Pictures to get a piece of the film and worked with Netflix to revive the project. DNEG Animation, which produced the final animation, had to rebuild all of its existing cg assets, but thankfully the majority of the film was still animated in Blue Sky

Kanno was with Nemona from the beginning of that blue sky, and recently sat down with us to discuss the film's challenging development and production. His role evolved over the years, and put together a digital art book.

Cartoon Brew: When and how did you get involved with Nimona?

Aidan Kanno: It took a long time since I participated in this project in 2016. Patrick [Osborne] was shopping around it elsewhere, and when he showed it to us, I was like, "Holy-I'm on this project," Patrick had just come off a [Disney short] feast, and there was a clear desire to take that particular aesthetic. Also, move it forward and apply it to this medieval future story. But we were also heavily influenced by the iconic 2d fantasy animation genre in which we all grew up, defining much of our childhood.

How did you find the right style to take Osborne's original look and do it to enhance it-

How does it blend the Big Syd Mead and Eyvind Earle in the beginning - added Charley Harper to the mix.Doing so gave width to something that seems to be still alive in the golden age of animation, but in our form and language we made it possible to cover all the bases, rather than limiting the story to the extent that we could push a lot of that stuff forward.

I noticed that Feast's production designer Jeff Turley also contributed to the art book. You were a film production designer for a while, but he moved before the production ended. How did that partnership work-

When Jeff came, he and I teamed up to make a style guide. In the early days, it was very focused on establishing that style. While I was working on the character side, he focused more on colors and sets. And much of that style guide is in the movies. We had to figure out a lot of 3d tenants that didn't work in 2d, so it was our training manual and by in production we had a plan for this universe that we were moving, transforming and reforming, and when the rules say everything must be aligned on the grid, it's a good idea. This is hard to do without extreme performance limitations. So we had to come up with clever ways to apply our thoughts in 3d and motion.

Can we talk a bit about the development process in Blue Sky-

This was probably the most collaborative project I've ever worked on. We knew it would be a big ask to make this very specific one, especially if there are technical limitations. We brought the production crew really early.It has created this beautiful cycle of feedback where we can talk about what we want to do and figure out how to work around the limits that prevent it.

And what happened when the studio was shut down -

We had a lot of places and when the studio closure happened we it was absolutely heartbreaking. Fortunately, we were able to find a partner at Annapurna and Megan Ellison, and then Netflix joined in. We put a lot of work and came up with solutions to many problems, so we were able to bring almost everything with us in data-wise.

How did it actually work - how was the pipeline affected-

Everything had to be put in a new pipeline, and DNEG was great at piecing things together. I was walking as the only production designer at that time. Despite having a lot of data from the original development, everyone had to think along the lines they established in 5 years of development, speeding up the new team in style.

How did your role change after production started at DNEG -

When production started, I was working on a standard design piece and making sure all artists in all departments shared the same brain. My job was to oversee it and ensure everything was consistent because our look required consistency. Our effect could not feel pasted. They could not live in a different style, and all the characters had to feel like a part of this world, so everything melted into the background

aesthetically changed something after DNEG took over-

From 2016 until the film was finished, the spirit of things never changed. There were some details and tweaks, but looking back at the book's 2017 original artwork and the final work done by DNEG, it hasn't changed much. That's a great credit to DNEG, who had a monumental task that they crushed. Being able to stay consistent through all that change is still mind-blowing to me.

Near the end of the book, you devote a lot of space to paint over. Can you talk about that process and why you felt it was important to include them in your art book-

Paint-over occurs in all films, whether included in an art book or not. In most cases, they are not.The whole production floor had to learn to "paint" this whole thing, so I wanted to include paint over. So by the time we knew exactly what we wanted to be in a movie, those paint-oversides were invaluable, as they were doing their final polish. It made us honest and consistent. Because of the nature of this film, there were so many details that we had to make sure we were consistent. This is because you can literally line up the picture of the film with the final image and match it almost one-on-one where you can't tell the difference.

There's also an interesting passage about how the character details were removed as they moved further in the frame. Why it was necessary-

We immediately needed to understand technically how to remove the details and simplify the geometry as the figure moved further into the background, as the amount of detail in space just shrinks something and makes the frame feel more 3d. It was the only way to make it feel like the whole thing was drawn with the same set of brushes.

That meant that we had to do multiple designs for each character based on their position in a particular frame-

We began to think that we must do exactly that: create assets for every single step of the road to the background. But the excellent team at Blue Sky came up with a solution to remove, shrink and merge assets. I don't fully understand it, but their solution meant that we could work with two, maybe three different assets. For our crowd, we have a little thing called a sprite, which is basically a circle over a Playmobil-style body with very simple geometry, but because of the movement and atmospheric effects, it still feels like a crowd and doesn't break the viewer's attention.

How did you put together an art book - and who helped-

I made a book with Emily Chekmeyan, one of the team members of the design team. I have to give her so much credit for this thing. She took all my mess and cleaned it up and I asked her to do millions of other things. The whole process was like DIY. Jeff and I had talked about it a long time ago and established what we wanted from an art book that was basically all art. Every image of the film, expressed through the voice of Nimona, has a very strong editorial aspect. So, I wanted to design a book and make it as if Nimona was doing it. I thought of it like a DIY zine, a chaos manual inspired by David Carson. Some of the writing was done by me, some by Jeff, and some by Assaf Horowitz, who was the film's environmental art director. But many of the pages in the book are straight from the style guide, what we had internally in the Bible, and what we passed to DNEG.

Digital art books are fantastic and really fun with music, gifs and clips. But is there a possibility of a physical art book in the future-

Once the limbs were left, they were cutting them out to make a physical version of the book.