Ok, so I’ve begun painting some real Gothenburg locations. There aren’t many exterior scenes planned for the game, but I felt that having some “famous” places featured was kind of necessary (and probably expected), if only for cutscenes.
I’ve postponed painting these, since it’s rather tedious work – city scenes aren’t my favourite type of backgrounds to render, with all the repetitious details and textures, and getting the right balance between photo-realistic and cartoony is actually very difficult. While there’s a lot of tracing going on, you can’t be too exact or the picture won’t look handpainted, but if you simplify too much it will look flat and cell-shaded. Which isn’t what I’m looking for.
I want all the Gothenburg scenes to convey the cold, damp autumn feeling you’d probably hate this city for, weren’t it for some other redeeming qualities (which I can’t exactly pinpoint now). So there’s this constant overcast, and the patches of snow will appear to risk being washed away by rain any minute, I think this will make the contrast between the real world and the book world much more palpable.