Interview with Jeff Nentrup

Interview with Jeff Nentrup


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Jeff Nentrup

Designer & Illustrator

Position: Designer & Illustrator
School or Professional Training: Art Center Center College of Design, Pasedena CA.
Location: Pasadena, CA

Jeff talks with us about some of his favourite works and his latest creation for BT's This Binary Universe.

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CL: First will you give us a little history about yourself and what you do?

Jeff Nentrup: I'm Jeff Nentrup, designer and illustrator. I attended Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, receiving a BFA with Distinction in Illustration. I do a lot of design work for the film and gaming industries ie: environments, characters, creatures, lighting and coloring etc. As an illustrator I do book covers, album covers, advertising and package art. Clients include Warner Bros, Dreamworks, Sony Pictures, Paramount Pictures, Activision, Hewlett-Packard, Estee Lauder, Lego and Hasbro.

CL: What project has been the most fulfilling project to work on?

Jeff Nentrup: There have been quite a few. Just tonight I watched a Tony Bennett special on TV that I worked on, a Tony and Stevie Wonder duet in front of a sign I did, on a set I designed the color and lighting for. I recently got to design Ironman among other things for the Black Sabbath Resurrection campaign. I mean Ironman, come on!!! I got a big hug from Ozzy at the launch party last Friday night. The new MyChemicalRomance video Welcome to the Black Parade was another. To see my paintings built into huge sets and filmed was very fulfilling. I also did the matte paintings for the environments seen in the final video which is nice. The track for BT's This Binary Universe was probably the greatest thrill. I had complete creative control to animate an 11 minute track and the work has been so well received around the world. BT himself has used images from the piece for the album cover, movie poster, DVD menu as well as a whole line of merchandise.

A preview of BT's The Binary Universe can be seen here:

CL: How does color have an effect on your day to day life.

Jeff Nentrup: I am constantly studying the effects of light and color around me. I love seeing combinations that work together or the feeling of being moved by something visually before I can put my finger on it then dissecting and distilling it's color pallet for my own purposes. I'm known to get excited and give unsolicited lessons on simultaneous contrast and transillumination when I see them occur in nature to those within ear shot. In color theory its all about context. Colors having different effects physically and psychologically depending on what's adjacent to them. I think it's the same thing in life. Like a red shirt helping you look vibrant and healthy where a yellow or green shirt can make you look ill. This is something we use in film all the time. Color can have the dramatic impact of a strong supporting character in its ability to reinforce a story element. Ask a woman about her choice of shoe colors on any given day and take notes.

CL: In the BT project, you really used some amazing color pallets. What was your inspiration for the paintings for that project.

Jeff Nentrup: BT gave me this amazing track that felt very dreamlike to me. The opening shot was inspired from a trip to Brazil where in flight I watched a lighting storm over the amazon at 3am. Then I came up with a sort of flying dream concept with a rather strange cast of characters. It was a coastal nocturne setting so I went with a heavily saturated blue pallet to give it a soft and somewhat serene contrast to the odd storyline. I moved the colors from deep and subtle, into saturated cools, ending with a warmer cool pallet with greens and violets to help the viewer feel the passage of time through night to morning. I wanted the track to end with that morning feeling after a lucid dream. Where you wake up and think, wait... what the hell was that!

CL: What is your favorite color of the moment?

Jeff Nentrup:
grey olive by kaycee

This sort of muted green is something I use in portraiture to balance the warm reds and pinks of flesh. In mixtures to mute the warms as well as a local color much as you would find in a mans 5 o'clock shadow.

CL: And your favorite palette?

Jeff Nentrup:
olive fiesta by kaycee

This is a typical mixture I'd use in any one of my paintings for both the grays found in environments or in flesh tones.


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