|Portrait of Elizabeth Shaw|
a) Portrait of Elizabeth Shaw
When Matt Hatton drew this unused image of Shaw as David's icon, there was no real answer to whether she was alive or not.
There was no brief really apart from the fact David tortured her. Hatton thought that she would be the encapsulation of his love and hat for humanity and there was no way to really be sure of what was real and what was not.
- matthatt0nThis does not bode well... (unused) Shaw as David's icon painting. Drawing. You know what I mean. Is she alive? Hard to say. Pencil charcoal and Photoshop. #aliencovenant #conceptartist (https://www.instagram.com/p/BUkGJ70Fes2/?taken-by=matthatt0n)
Thanks so much! As for Shaw no brief really bar that he tortured her
but I thought (and it is sort of in the movie) that she was the
encapsulation of his love/hate of humanity. And that we can't be sure
what was real and what was not. And unlikely but even if they were just
drawings what an ironically human way to manifest his creativity!
|Portrait of Elizabeth Shaw|
b) Portrait of Elizabeth Shaw (2)
Hatton did another drawing of Shaw along this theme, and found himself slightly inspired by Giger's Li II, mainly in the eyes.
- matthatt0n: More Shaw. Slight Giger Li 2 influence mainly in the eyes. Charcoal pencil Photoshop. #aliencovenant #conceptart
|Engineer dissection (Male)|
The first thing that Hatton did on the project was an Engineer Dissection, roughly in the style of Leonardo Da Vinci.
Then he did a female Engineer, but the drawing team were going in an anal-retentive Victorian style for the cross hatching, but decided it would be prohibitive in terms of the time that they had and the amount of work they had to do, and so this became a looser in the manner of Rembrandt style hatching
- matthatt0n: First thing I did on the project - Engineer dissection, in a roughly Leonardo style. Also did a female engineer in a more constrained Victorian type of hatching. But it was quickly apparent that that would be prohibitively time-heavy, though tonally appropriate. So Leo and Rembrandt it was. But is it a dissection? Or vivisection? Only David knows for sure! Pen/nibs and inks. #aliencovenant #conceptart (https://www.instagram.com/p/BUjHtV9l-2P/?taken-by=matthatt0n)
- matthatt0n: It occurred to me that I hadn't posted any female Engineers from Covenant yet. This was actually the second piece I did, right after the Leonardo type dissection. We were investigating going in an anal-retentive Victorian style for the crosshatching but decided it would be prohibitive in terms of the time we had and amount to do. Hence the looser Rembrandt hatching! #aliencovenant #matthatton #conceptart (https://www.instagram.com/p/BY1NwcJFPXk/?taken-by=matthatt0n)
|Elizabeth-Shaw 'Immaculate Heart" (I)|
d.i) Elizabeth-Shaw 'Immaculate Heart"drawings
Matt was taking two Elizabeth-Shaw 'Immaculate Heart" religious/blasphemous studies to completion but in the end, he chose the profile version.
While he like Florentine drapery, with this forward image, he was showing an allusion to the Virgin Mary's hood/headdress and it was more in key with the idea of religious portraits of the Virgin Mary with her heart exposed.
In the end he preferred the idea of the fishbowl helmet representing the halo, and the engineer's spine in place of her own on the profile
|Elizabeth-Shaw 'Immaculate Heart" (II)|
In Matt's story of this event, he found himself putting his hand over his face covering his eyes, perhaps in exasperation.
- matthatt0n :Huh. I think I totally forgot to post this with the other Shaw drawings all that time ago (the ones in the "WARNING" Container)! Basically I took two Shaw 'Immaculate Heart" religious/blasphemous studies to completion. In the end I chose the profile version posted previously. While I like the Florentine drapery here with the allusion to Mary's hood/headdress and it's more straight-up like the religious portraits with her heart exposed, in the end I liked the fishbowl helmet doing double duty as a halo and the engineer's spine in place of her own on the profile. And rebreathing stuff. So, y'know, that went in the film! I'd hoped people would get the religious analogy but hey... 😄 Pencil, charcoal, Photoshop. #conceptart #matthatton #aliencovenant #alien #elizabethshaw (https://www.instagram.com/p/BZu8-T5lOPH/?taken-by=matthatt0n)
- paintlab: Poor Shaw... beautiful render but I am kinda partial to the profile as well 👍(https://www.instagram.com/p/BZu8-T5lOPH/?taken-by=matthatt0n)
- matthatt0n@paintlab Yeah. We thought it was worth taking both all the way then deciding. So I said to the Set Decorator Victor what's your decision? He said what's YOUR decision?! Facepalm. And so it went... 😄 (https://www.instagram.com/p/BZu8-T5lOPH/?taken-by=matthatt0n)
- ovidiocartagena: Man, I loved all these. Did you take inspiration in the Museo di la Specola anatomy sculptures in Florence? (https://www.instagram.com/p/BZu8-T5lOPH/?taken-by=matthatt0n)
- matthatt0n: @ovidiocartagena That's exactly the inspiration! Or whichever of the two original Florentine schools at the time the 'anatomical venus' was the more decorative. Can't remember names but one was more scientific in presentation the other more 'aesthetically pleasing'! I think that's very David. (https://www.instagram.com/p/BZu8-T5lOPH/?taken-by=matthatt0n)
The idea of turning a halo into a space helmet fits in with the Von Daniken/Ancient Astronaut mythos as on the cover of Gerhard R. Steinhäuser - Jesus Christ Heir to the Astronauts, 1976 (See: Prometheus: Jesus Christ Emissary From Outer Space?)
Perhaps HR Giger did this sort of thing in his Biomechanical Landscape (1976) near enough transforming a Nativity scene by Guido da Siena from the 1270s, but in a way that it was difficult to tell what they were for. (See: Biomechanic Landscape I )
d.iv) See: David's nightmare drawing with two figures in a womb
e) Alien foetuses and skulls
Matt went with the idea that David the android would investigate congenital and extreme abnormalities, perhaps in pursuit of finding more elastic/hardy qualities for the 'xenomorph' (although the skull in the middle bottom of the image is a normal baby skull.
So there would be exploration of existing conditions such as hydrocephalus in babies in terms of rapid structural growth/expansion to allow for a bigger brainpan for example, or an ideal shape etc.
Matt explored the Beauchene Skull process which was an exploded skull, that was a disarticulated human skull that has been painstakingly reassembled on a stand with jointed, movable supports that allows for the moving and studying of the skull as a whole or each piece individually.
It was named after the mid-1800s French anatomist Claude Beauchene who was known to have developed this method to display the anatomy of the head. Beauchene would meticulously clean a skull, separate its bones, and mount them on a stand designed to exhibit them at once individually and in context.
A part of this process was to fill the skull with rice, saturate it so that it swelled and split the bone along the natural fault lines. It was a process attributed to the French but as Matt wondered, it may have originally from Leonardo Da Vinci.
Matt produced an early version of a the alien foetus piece.
He thought that the dome of the skull might form a long sensory array or use different bandwidths for its vision.
He also liked the idea that the alien might would see thermally like a snake, seeing it as logical.
Going beyond the obvious dragon metaphors and beasts being afraid of fire, there was the idea that a flame thrower would temporarily blind it.
Rather than it being a head caught within a spiders web, these are radiating waves.
The drawings continue to go with the possibility that the images are based on David's work on the alien life form or are they his unhinged thoughts.
Is David with his increasingly fractured mind, a reliable narrator or not?
- "A Beauchene Skull, also known as an exploded skull, is a disarticulated human skull that has been painstakingly reassembled on a stand with jointed, movable supports that allows for the moving and studying of the skull as a whole or each piece individually. In the mid-1800s French anatomist Claude Beauchene developed this method to display the anatomy of the head. Beauchene would meticulously clean a skull, separate its bones, and mount them on a stand designed to exhibit them at once individually and in context. " (http://www.radio-guy.net/website/medical/medical_1_image_html/med1f.html)
- Matt Hatton: Back to Alien: Covenant! I thought David would investigate congenital and extreme abnormalities maybe in pursuit of finding more elastic/hardy qualities for the xeno (although that skull middle bottom is a normal baby skull - those critters are weird!). For instance looking at existing conditions like hydrocephalus in babies/foetuses in terms of rapid structural growth/expansion maybe to allow for a bigger brainpan for example or an 'ideal' shape etc. Also as in the old days using the beauchene process where the skull was filled with rice and then saturated so it swelled and split the bone along the natural faultlines. Attributed to the French but may have actually come from Leonardo. Of course the inference is that it the Gigerish horror could have happened in a very unnatural way... Sorry dunno where the proper scan is right now! Pencil, nibs/Indian ink, watercolour. #conceptartist #aliencovenant #beauchene (https://www.instagram.com/p/BU84P5sl1wH/?taken-by=matthatt0n)
- Matt Hatton: Detail of early version of the foetus piece. As I was saying in the beauchene one, David is exploring on his way to creating the 'perfect' xeno. And after extending the brainpan laterally (it only needs to turn its head to widen the scan), the dome might form a long sensory array or use different bandwidths for its vision. I thought it might be cool and logical if the xeno 'sees' thermally like a snake. So beyond the obvious dragon metaphors and beasts being afraid of fire, that a flamethrower will temporarily blind it. So both things are true. As shown here with radiating waves and so on. I know fans are astoundingly literal these days (and to be fair the way the films have gone does encourage that) but it doesn't matter if no-one notices - the backstory I make is primarily to lend a consistency in approach. Which is different to the drawings contradicting each other intentionally. I wanted to continue David's unreliable narrator idea into the work. Are these actually his works or his unhinged thoughts? Anyway like I say it leads to imagery that might not have happened otherwise. I hope. 😝. Pencil on Japanese paper. #aliencovenant #conceptartist #xenomorph #matthatton (https://www.instagram.com/p/BU897v_FMOB/?taken-by=matthatt0n)
- Matt Hatton: Alien foetus studies. I wrote a whole backstory into the scientific notation charting David's unraveling and increasingly fractured mind. Doesn't matter if no-one ever sees it but a good way to imbue the imagery with a consistency of approach and avoid any legal/copyright issues! 😄 Pencil, charcoal, Photoshop. #aliencovenant #conceptartist (https://www.instagram.com/p/BUj7l_TFelk/?taken-by=matthatt0n)