The Adventure Time Blog

“The Enciridion!” Title Card Adventure

April 19th, 2010

First off, don’t forget to watch Cartoon Network tonight at 8:00 p.m. for the premiere of “The Enchiridion!” While it’s the seventh to air, it’s actually the first Adventure Time episode produced. And, as with any initial production, “The Enchiridion!” had its share of bumps and baggage. I’ll post a couple of versions of the storyboard tomorrow, but here’s an abridged glimpse at the process of creating the title card for episode #1 (and thereby setting the tone for those to follow).

You can probably tell by now there’s a deep, hard-boiled pulp feel to the Adventure Time title cards. For “The Enchiridion!,” the art team turned toward this copy of Science Fiction for inspiration. Here, you can also see creator Pendleton Ward’s rough concept for the card.

Inspiration and Early Sketch for

This then went off to character designer Phil Rynda, who came up with a whole series of more fleshed-out concepts, with input from Pen (he added the window, for instance).

Concept Sketch for

Phil’s work went off to Paul Linsley, who painted this slick piece of art.

Rejected Title Card for

Now, you might be thinking, hey, that’s pretty over-the-top for a kids cartoon. Well, the network thought so, too, and asked the guys to lighten up the art a bit. As one does in a situation like this, the boys replaced Finn’s knife with a baguette, while they added a couple of plates of spaghetti around Jake. Here’s the result:

Yikes! Now the spaghetti looks like, I don’t know, Jake’s entrails or something! This is more disturbing than before! Can’t we have a happier card? The solution? Remove the pasta, give Finn a grin and Jake a smile, and pump up the sunlight. The final, approved version - submitted after art director Nick Jennings gave his pass - is here (it’s the same as up top; I’m adding it again so you won’t have to scroll).*

So there you have it. Title card #1. So you’d better appreciate tonight those two seconds while this on your TV screen.

– Eric

* No, the thought of making a much gorier piece of art never occurred to anyone. Why would you even think that? What’s wrong with you?

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