I've aquired a vast amount of photographic reference of the London landscape, collected over the fifteen years we were in and out of production on The Last Belle. It'll be interesting to see how the reference - and the film - dates as the years roll by. Already a few of the locations we referenced for background paintings have been demolished (to be replaced with the usual generic glass boxes).
|This location in West London is still very much intact though...|
|..and inspired (with a little adaptation) this sequence.|
|On the other hand this location was copied more or less exactly...|
This was the approach we applied to The Last Belle backgrounds: try and get every single detail and texture right, but feel free to move things around and resize if it suits the shot or the sequence. And the strange thing is, the more 'theatrical licence' we took the more it began to feel like the real thing.
I am now no longer sure whether I'm living in the real London, or the London that exists in the film, as both of them seem as true to me as each other. Weird.
Incidentally, before signing off, if you too are a fan of painterly effects and cinema 'fakery' check out the wonderful Matte Shot blog, a site I regularly get lost in for several hours at a time. Enjoy.