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PRODUCTION DESIGNER PROFILE

ALEX MCDOWELL

WHO IS HE?

Alex McDowell is a production designer


that has worked in industry for 30 years. He
uses immersive design to create sets that fit
well with the story and the vision of the
director. Each item of the set is thought out
logically and built for the world it is
supposed to be a part of. He uses a mix of
traditional methods and digital methods to
produce his work.

THE WAY HE WORKS

A quote from Susan Karlin shows how McDowell works McDowell grounds his highly imaginative
worlds in plausibility through a process he calls "world building." Much the way an actor might
create a backstory for his character to inform his behavior, McDowell creates a foundation of
rules for the world hes designing. He and his team brainstorm the type of science, technology,
social structure, and political hierarchy that govern that world. The answers they derive serve to
inform the design, which, in turn, supports the scripts narrative.

http://www.fastcocreate.com/1683341/alex-mcdowell-on-creating-krypton-and-the-future-ofproduction-design

WHAT HAS HE WORKED ON?

Macdowell has worked on adverts as well


of films such as Fight Club (1999), The Cat
in the Hat (2003), Charlie and the
Chocolate Factory (2005), Corpse Bride
(2005), Watchmen (2009) and Man of Steel
(2013). He was also a visual consultant on
Fantastic Mr. Fox (2009) and Rise of the
Guardians (2012).

MAN OF STEEL
Mcdowell recently worked on the film Man of Steel.
Though only 15 minutes of the film is dedicated to
Superman's home planet Krypton McDowell was still
required to build this world from scratch. He wanted to
create this world to look alien however it couldnt be too
complicated for a human audience to understand. He
designed Krypton to be similar to earth but in a state of
decay and destruction.

WHY I ADMIRE HIM

I personally admire his work because of the way he works. He uses his methods to build a
realistic world which is believable and ties in nicely with the script and the film. As someone
working in CG this is an important thing to remember and take forward while designing.