Case Studies

Case Study: Fandom – World of Warcraft

By 21 September, 2015 No Comments

Fandom is a show on Twitch put together by itmeJP. It’s not a weekly show but instead something that gets up on whenever it’s possible to do so. The show itself is about people that love and are passionate about one game, movie, comic etc. and each show have a different thing that it covers. The idea for the visual branding is that each show have new overlays and a updated logo.

The very first show is all about World of Warcraft, and a small confession, I’ve never played World of Warcraft but I did play Warcraft 2 and I loved that game. Not knowing or understanding something should never be an obstacle but instead a chance to explore new ideas and expand your own skills. I took my time and looked up concept art and looked at the website for the upcoming expansion. You can call this a moodboard if you want to, I just didn’t save it but figuring it out fills the same purpose.

Fandom logo

Top: Original by Zooc. Bottom: My updated version

As you can see the original logo, made by Zooc, is orange. Something that had to be addressed before anything else. I knew the overlay was going to have a green and black theme to it, since that was the colors for the upcoming expansion after all. I added  few adjustment layers to get the colors looking the right way and then I added some smoke/fire effects to really give it a unique look.

Fandom wallpaper

Fandom background

When the logo was set the next step was to get working on the background. I’ve made concept art looking things before and I’m getting more and more used to doing it as time goes on. I wanted to mimic the exact feel of the game so by first adding the colors from the bright sky to the darker ground. After that first background layer was done I moved on shapes, when I do speed painting and concept art I like to work from shapes and then shave them down to what I want. Then adding more and more details over time. For this one I also worked in 150DPI so I could size it down to 72DPI when I was done, same as when I worked on the Dicing With Death overlays.

Fandom overlay 1

Main overlay

For the layout I wanted, yet again, to give as much space to cameras as possible. I feel that a lot of shows, no matter what production value miss this point. When you have taking-heads you want to be able to see them. While that means covering up the background I made it also gives an opportunity to add a lot more detail to the framing and name tags. This setup also only needed three different overlays. First one being the main one with four cameras, second one with a browser window so JP can pull in websites or any other relevant thing and lastly the shoutout card.

All of the parts on the overlay was created in the same 150DPI document as the background. This eventually started to slowdown my system so I had to move a lot of things into different compositions to better handle it. Each border is hand painted with a bottom shape layer, shadow, highlight and finally texture layer. The same goes for the different nameplates. The reason why I wanted to hand paint everything is so we can have about the same art style as the logo itself. Since that is hand painted as well using digital means and/or layer styles would make the overlay and logo look way to different from each other. We want to give the viewer and experience from start to finish and it should feel exclusive with a high production value.

Fandom profile

Shoutout window

A few things: It’s extremely important to familiarize yourself with the concept and ideas for the show you’re making an overlay for. It’s not enough to understand some of it or work from what you already know. The same goes for when you create anything for either yourself or someone else. If you have no understanding, and that comes from hours of research and not by only looking up a image on google, then your relation to the show and the content will fall flat. No good design will ever save a miss-matched or when a designer have a bad understanding of their clients project. I also added a background video so we could get a little bit of animation in the background, if you watched the episode live you can see there’s a little bit of smoke moving. That smoke is the video layer with a track matte over it and using a free stock of smoke wisp. Then we layer the overlay on top of that and at the bottom we put the background layer I created so you can see the original background through the overlay.

Fandom browser

Browser window

The next show is going to be about Destiny and I’ve already started with it and I even created a moodboard so I can visual have a better understanding as well. I did some test streaming last weekend and actually streamed a little bit of the creation of that overlay. This is something I’m going to keep doing as well as answering questions. It will be sort of a Q&A while you watched me work. This won’t come in full-effect until after TwitchCon but you can follow my channel at or my Twitter @visiblespeech

I’m away for TwitchCon in the coming week so I’m in the air or landing when the next post should go up. Not sure I’ll be able to get an article ready in time but I might write one on the plane. It’s after all a 12 hour flight so that will probably happen. No matter what there won’t be a podcast next week since I’m back on Monday evening. I might write an article on the plane and maybe record a post-TwitchCon podcast with only myself an publish that, again we’ll see. No promises, but I want to get it all done.

If you’re going to TwitchCon say hi if you see me. The first day I’ll be wearing a yellow shirt with my logo on and the second day you’ll have to spot my yellow pin with the logo on. If you’re not going you can still say hi and follow me on Twitter @visiblespeech 




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