Edouard Caplain is a French concept artist and illustrator working at DONTNOD Entertainment since October 2012. Next to his work on DONTNOD's first game, Remember Me, Caplain was heavily involved in the pre-production and visual development of the studio's second game, Life is Strange, as one of the main concept artists, and influenced the aesthetics of the game greatly. He worked on the stand-alone precursor game The Awesome Adventures of Captain Spirit and is currently working on Dontnod's second season of Life is Strange.
The first project Caplain worked on as a concept artist was a game called The Outsider at the British studio Frontier Developments in 2008, but the game got cancelled before release. Later on, he moved to London to work on his second project, a game called WarDevil: Unleash the Beast Within at Digi-Guys before going off to join the Creative Assembly to work on Alien: Isolation, a project Caplain is very proud to have been a part of. Two years later he moved back to Paris and started to work at Dontnod Entertainment.
Work on Life is Strange
Life is Strange is the first game Caplain worked on from start to finish, over the span of three years.
Caplain has always loved drawing. He enjoys bringing his own ideas to life, but he also likes to work in a team since it gives you the opportunity to share your work with other artists regularly and get their feedback.
"Working in a team and having the opportunity to share your work with other artists every day as well as seeing how excited the 3-D team gets when you get something right is all very fulfilling."
Life is Strange
Life is Strange 2
The following images are a set of quick sketches for Life is Strange that were made before painting:
The following images were shown to Square Enix early on to explain the gameplay in Life is Strange:
- Edouard Caplain is the creator and designer of Hawt Dawg Man from Life is Strange.
- When designing Blackwell Academy, Caplain conducted research on schools in Oregon around 1910, the year Blackwell Academy was founded, aiming for a design true to reality. He researched on what schools looked like at that time, their architecture, the materials that were used to build them as well as what kinds of trees populated their campus.
- As evident from Edouard Caplain's Twitter posts, he played Life is Strange himself and really likes the game's protagonist Max Caulfield. He also showed interest in playing the Japanese edition.
- It is interesting to note that contrary to the usual role of concept artists in video games (i.e. creating art material which will help guide the general art direction during the production of a game), Caplain's art style directly inspired the graphics of Life is Strange; the developers found the art style so interesting that they tried to recreate it as faithfully as possible in 3D. It explains why the concept arts and the game itself look so similar.
- One of Edouard's illustrations for the Everyday Heroes photo contest entries in Life is Strange is actually of fellow artist Gary Jamroz-Palma working at a desk inside DONTNOD's studio. This finding was confirmed by Writer Michel Koch on Twitter. Edouard has been known for drawing sketches of people in the office.
- A photograph seen in the living room of the alternative Price household in Episode 4 is a Remember Me character artist drawn by Edouard.
- Edouard drew the "Pirate Power" CD that can be found in Chloe Price's garage bedroom in Episode 4.
- In early concept art for Max's room that appears on Feral Interactive's website, Max appeared to have an environmentally conscious roommate. Edouard was asked about this concept art, and the reply was that Max did originally have one (all students had them at the time), and this was a Greenpeace/hippie style student, but she was cut and is not in-game.
- Also in the early concept art, Max appeared to like rollerblading as some rollerblades are seen tucked under her desk. However, this skillful pastime doesn't seem to have made it into the game itself. Instead, Max makes the following comment upon seeing some rollerblades in Dana's room: "Rollerblades! I wanted to be a derby girl, but I almost broke my feet just putting them on..."
Interviews and Articles
- The Artist behind Life is Strange (March 3, 2016)
- Edouard Caplain on the Art behind Life is Strange (February 9, 2016)
- The Art Of Life Is Strange (January 28, 2016)
- Life is Strange: Art of Environment Storytelling (January 27, 2016)
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Edouard Caplain on the Art Behind Life Is Strange (February 9, 2016)
- ↑ For more information, see here.
- ↑ Twitter post by Edouard Caplain
- ↑ Original Twitter posts found here and here
- ↑ Edouard states here that "she's just freezing time... it's the tornado that's moving objects on every pic." The street location is seen later in the game.
- ↑ In this Twitter thread, Edouard cannot remember who, but thinks it could have been Chloe.
- ↑ Twitter post by Edouard Caplain
- ↑ (insert twitter post as reference)
- ↑ MasterClass with Michel Koch (sequence starting at 1:14:00)
- ↑ Twitter post by Michel Koch
- ↑ Confirmed by asking Eduoard Caplain.