So we had a flashback sequence in Smallville to the city of Kandor on planet Krypton which I had to design for Entity FX. I referenced mainly the original 1978 movie for the natural formations, but tried to innovate somewhat with the design of the city. The first thing we knew we wanted a reddish cast to the the thing, reflecting the red sun of Krypton.
I had this idea about the building having a glassy look, which would catch and reflect the red sunlight and do some interesting things with it. I figured maybe the towers were grown, just as the fortress of solitude is an organic, crystalline structure, but that the towers were also carved and polished by human effort, and not as chaotic as the fortress.
I had this idea in mind of a cathedral-like structure, out in the middle of a vast wasteland.
And the final sketch...
I refined the landscape into a hi-res matte painting, while Kaz Yoshida built and rendered the structure in Maya and Metal Ray. I then assembled all the elements into a final composite in After Effects.
Click here to see the final shot and layer breakdown.