All artwork and text is copyrighted by Paul Lasaine, unless otherwise attributed to the respective copyright owner. It is illegal to publish, print or reproduce any such artwork or text without written permission by the artist or copyright owners.

Welcome to my my Portfolio Page.

This is where you'll find my professional work (and some personal pieces as well).

As always, I'm unable to post my current work, as it's for films that have yet to hit the big screen.

Don't forget to visit my BLOG. There's more of my work there, plus a bunch of other fun stuff.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Surf's Up - post #12


OK, you all must be sick of Surf's Up by now, so this will be my last Surf's Up post.

I'll end with my painting of the lead character, Cody Maverick. It's based on a drawing by our Character Designer, Sylvain Deboissy. The intent of the painting was to figure out what Cody (and all the penguin characters) would actually look like on screen.

Up until this point, we only had Sylvain's pencil drawings and marker comps, and there where a lot of questions about the penguins' finished textures. The biggest question mark was regarding feathers: should they have them or not? One concept that was gaining a lot of ground, was the idea that the penguins should look like their skin was made out of wetsuit material. Real penguins kind of look like they're wearing wetsuits anyway, and since our characters were supposed to be surfers...

The wet suit concept was intriguing, and the directors were definitely leaning in that direction. Partly because it was a fun idea, but also I think because they were afraid that a fully feathered character would look too busy on screen.

I, on the other hand, felt that when all was said and done, no matter how cool the wetsuit concept was, it would end up looking lame on screen...that anything other than a fully feathered character would just look boring...or at best, too I did this painting to sell the studio on what I thought Cody should look like.

In the end, this painting sold everyone on the feather idea...and the rest is history.


Dominus said...

very cool, i love the surfboard idea.
just a few questions if you please...

1. how did you create the feathers? manually painted or a brush?
2. painter or photoshop? why? :)

thank you so much for sharing!

shannon said...

I've spent all afternoon looking at the beautiful work on your blog. Very inspiring!

Catherine said...

You could post stuff from Surf's Up forever and I would never get tired of it. I hope you'll continue to include some at least every now and then!

Shuku said...

Sick of such lovely, lovely stuff? Nooooooooo way! I for one am glad for lots and lots of feathers on Cody, it looks -wonderful-.

I could spend hours just looking at that texture and never get bored.

Steampunk Seamstress

bog_art said...

Painting?? are you kidding me?? I thought it was a 3D model.. totally awesome!!

Philip Dimitriadis said...

Wow Paul... at first I thought I was looking at a final Render!!! Fantastic!!! Really inspiring. Thanks for sharing all this great work and information on Surf's Up.

Paul Lasaine said...

I like to answer as many questions as possible with my character paintings. Often that means taking them to a really high level of finish, and getting as close as I can to what I want the final renders to look like. It solves a lot of problems up front, and frees up the 3D folks to do what they do best. I figure if I can get a painted character to look good, it will only improve when it gets into 3D.

DARAF said...

Hello Paul, your work is amazing. I recently put in an application to imageworks. I hope I can be part of the team working under you some day.
Take care.

Bobby Chiu said...

BEAUTIFUL painting and great story as well! That's what I love about blogs... hearing the little stories behind the images and movies we love.

madmounty said...

amazing stuff! would it be possible for you to take a quick look at my blog and give me a couple pointers?

Nathan Fowkes said...

Hi Paul, the work is fantastic (as it always is dang it). I'm looking forward to more. Happy Holidays to you and your family.

Rodrigo Lara said...

Great work, well done !!!!!!!
Congratulations !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Bojana said...

Your paintings are amazing!! :)
Recently, I got a book called "Art of LOTRO" (to make the title short),
and that's the first time I saw your paintings...
Is this mostly brush on canvas art?
Do you also work in PS or Painter?
An of course, is Cody an actual painting on canvas? It looks so 3d, it's unbelievable!!! But my favorites are your LOTRO paintings…

I'm so glad I ran into your blog, it’s very inspiring!:)

Anonymous said...

Ca fait un moment que je guette plus d’information sur PAUL LASAINE, dans divers livre, magazine d’art, Internet…mais en vain. J’ai fais la connaissance de son œuvre en 1998, après avoir acheté le livre « The prince of Egypt, a New vision in animation », aux éditions Abrams, quel incroyable travail. (I’m said It’s AMAZING)
Quel plaisirs de pouvoir enfin visionner son œuvre sur ce blog, en attendant un livre étant consacré à toutes ses créations….Si j’ose l’espérer.

Thank you very much mr Lasaine for your beautiful work.Mery christmas and happy new year.

Best regards

Dimitri (from Belgium)

Paul Lasaine said...

Booky asked
Q: LOTR...traditional or digital?

A: Mostly traditional. A couple digital.

Q: Cody...traditional or digital?

A: Digital. Photoshop. Not 3D.

In fact, I'm working on a tutorial for how I painted the feathers. Stay tuned!

Q: Do I work in Painter or Photoshop?

A: I use both. Though, mostly I work in Photoshop. Depends on the painting, and what I'm trying to achieve.

Erwin Madrid said...

Thank you for posting all these. Very Inspiring!

criii said...

Thanks for all stuff published.
I've have just a small question.
have a litlle daughter, she's six , and she felt in love with Cody.
She wants to wear a Big Z's necklace as his, but I can't find anything similar in Spain

Could you tell me if there's anything available, and where can I get it?

many thanks again
If anybody has any info pls send it to

Sophie said...

Its funny, your paintings don't look any different from the 3d models. You're a brilliant artist :)

Paul Lasaine said...

Thanks Sophie. But actually the complement should go to the folks at Imageworks, whose job it was to match my paintings in 3D.

Anonymous said...

Dear Paul,
I don't know where to start, so first I send you my compliments on your great work.
I came across your site while searching the net for pictures on moby dick and whaling. why ? well, I will try to cut a long story short. I'm a member of the local art and culture scene. in 2002 we opened an exhibition with the photos of Bruno P. Zehnder, a wellknown Swiss Photographer specializing on penguins. He died in 1997 in Antarctica. More information on him and our exhibition is available on - unfortunately in German only.
The exhibition will start for the 6th time in Switzerland on June 1st 2008. Beside the pictures we would like to includ some more information on Antarctica (geography, geology, history, etc.). All the text is done and now we are looking for suitable pictures to go with the text. As one chapter will be on whaling we would like to ask you if we could include one of your moby dick pictures.
To be honest, there isn't much we could pay you. We rather spend the money on a top-quality print which will last for several exhibitions. We think we do a good job (after all our exhibition was granted the patronatship of the Swiss UNESCO-Commission) and all work is done without payment, and the historical museums in Switzerland have as little a budget as any of these museums have.
If you could imagine your picture beeing part of our exhibition, please contact me on my e-mail

Thanks a lot and looking forward to your answer.

Charly Hochstrasser

jason hazelroth said...

All I have to say is your work is a big inspiration to me.

katana2665 said...

Where are the model sheets for the character? I thought I might see some posted on the web, but to no avail...Does the studio keep them underwraps even though the movie and art book are out? Thanks...nice work.

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Stephen said...

Wow, what a find! This is a great site. Thank you for sharing your awe-inspiring work. Just wanted to say that I fully agree Surf's Up is one of the best 3D movies ever made, and I'm stunned it didn't catapult Sony pictures up there with Pixar.
Congrats on selling the feather idea; it added that special realistic quality that makes 3D cartoons so mesmerizing. Loved Tanks tats!