Wednesday, March 2, 2011

TRIPURA: Character Designs 2: SHIVA & PASHUPATI


On the auspicious occasion of Mahashivaratri... want to put down my thoughts about the character design process relating to the great God. Actually the post has been in the works since the last one on Maya's design, but somehow it just hasn't got completed till now!

Designing Shiva was most of the most important things personally and we went thru Shiva as he had been depicted by practically everybody! We looked at everything we could find, from the bronze sculptures of South India, the reliefs at Ellora and Elephanta, to the comic book depictions of Waeerkar, Mulick and Kavadi and drew till what felt like Shiva to me, was on paper. Everybody responded to it favourably enough (above).
Getting the design correctly onto screen was the most unfortunate part of Tripura tho. For some reason the studio was not able to match design at all and even corrections sent didn't somehow get implemented. One of the mysteries of production dynamics to which I haven't received any answer yet.

Some of the rough sketches leading to the development of the final design
When Shiva went into destruction mode he would become Pashupati the primeval hunter.. the lord of destruction! In his terrifying aspect Shiva is often depicted as Gajantaka in the Ellora panels and elsewhere.
Since we felt there should be definite climb into the climax.. the buildup of the moment of Shiva becoming Pahupati would be fascinating to watch.. Even Vishnu and Brahma  contribute to the formation. (In the puranas, the gods are described as contributing to the process by providing various accessories)

Color key from the final storyboards:
Shiva turning in Pashupati!
Shiva in his violent aspect was to still be graceful, elegant.. when Shiva does it.. it is dance of destruction!! Maybe in  a future post,I will talk about this sequence in detail as many have expressed their satisfaction with this depiction of Shiva as the Destroyer!!

rough explorations of the Destroyer.

Animation layout ruff for a scene from the Animagic trailer. ( inset: story-sketch of the same)

The scene as it appeared in the animated piece. At the time Siva-Pashupati was to have his own viman.

Initial color concept of Pahupati
Sketches leading to the final design of Shiva-Pashupati 


All is possible due to Divine grace...May we be filled with gratitude and remain deserving always!


  1. a nice creation....

  2. breath taking!!!! only a small problem...isn't Shiva supposed to be fair complexioned?? ive read that he is as fair as fresh snow or a glittering crystal...the calendar artists, as it seems, always painted him wrong!! :)

  3. Beautiful... Where can I see the full version of Tripura? English subbed, I hope. I don't speak Hindi :-(