Saturday, 24 December 2011

Texture Definition In Art

Texture is critical in creating authenticity; evoking age, wear, use, and
passage of time; and reflecting the results of environmental conditions on a surface.
The Europeans call it patina. The surface of an object must reflect that it has been
lived-in or has existed in time. Dust is a common aging agent, easily accessible to
the filmmaker.

On the West coast, dust has an earthen, clay color due to the geological properties
of the landscape and the quality of reflected light in the region. The nature of
East coast dust is often black and sooty. The properties of the soil, car, industrial pollution,
and chimney soot in a crowded, architecturally cramped metropolis contribute
to the color and texture of the dirt and dust.

The purpose of texture in building materials, fabrics, and furnishings is to provide
contrast and complement and to add realism and a tactile sense to the design. The
materials chosen for the production design serve many purposes. The textures of
building materials communicate the properties of the structure: wood, metal, glass,
brick, and tile. If the texture is believable, whether real or created by the art department,
it will contribute to veracity of the story.

One of the missions of the production designer is to create the appearance of real
materials through art direction. A set built of wood can be transformed by covering
the surface with other materials to create the illusion that it is made of stone, any
variety of high quality wood, or sheet rock.

Materials and texture are storytelling devices. They inform the audience about the
economic status, time and place, and social and political conditions of the story’s
environment. Materials can become metaphors. In Terminator 2: Judgement Day
(1991) the Terminator and T1000 are made of metal. The production design by
Joseph Nemec III is filled with metal surfaces of all varieties, even molten metal. All
the metal structures in the film are related to the power of the cyborgs.

Part of the art of production design is using materials that are available, easy to
work with, and sensible for a film production. All the metal materials in the design
of Terminator 2: Judgement Day are not exactly what they look like. Surfaces are
treated, painted, and textured. To use real metal in every case would be difficult to
manage in building and working on a film set during construction and production.
The following examples demonstrate how the texture of set construction materials
can convey a specific look, mood, and atmosphere to a scene by aging new material
so that they appear to be old and worn.

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