Huds & Guis

Design of ‘The Avengers’ – Interface designs and HUDs

Wow! The Avengers did not disappoint, it was the entertaining blockbuster it was anticipated to be. What’s more, it didn’t disappoint in the way of featuring a tonne of HUDs and GUIs, and elaborating on what we loved about IRON MAN 1 & 2 thanks to the team at Cantina Creative!

IRON MAN HUD
Check out the IRON MAN HUD Montage

Fantastic! There’s nearly 2 minutes in total of screen time purely in the IRON MAN HUD! The beautifully crafted, heavily detailed designs were created by the super talented Jayse Hansen.

It is sooo cool that a designer was allocated to purely focus on the HUD design. The detail that he went through is amazing, to put so much research into something is inspiring. As Jayse put it “I basically taught myself how to fly using whatever I could find: books, videos and flight simulators

It was really interesting to hear that designing for stereo (3D) meant that everything was in focus and clearly readable. Great for effect but unfortunately that meant he had to make sure everything on the screen had a function and could not simply be decoration. You could argue that this was a good thing as it meant the designs had purpose and would be more authentic. It’d also push the design to make sure everything was properly considered.

Just check out the breakdown on Jayse Hansen’s site. The detail is truly inspiring.

My favourite things about the IRON MAN HUD:
1. How the elements animate on different layers in 3D, sexy!
2. All the circular reticles, and when they expand and come in from different depths
3. When the HUD swipes around to switch to ‘battle mode’. AWESOME!

Stark Tower UI
Check out Stark Tower UI

This is a short scene but it has some interesting sequences to note. It mainly involves hologram displays, and the cool part comes when Stark reaches in and grabs the 3D cube and looks at it in detail, a concept that was introduced in the IRON MAN films.

Another great moment is when Stark flicks the screen interface to display exploded content on holographic screens around him. A really cool take on the traditional ‘full screen’ mode but in a spatial setting.

Helipad screen UI
Check out Helipad screen UI

There’s some really nice scenes on the Helipad that feature touch screens, most of which are transparent.

The look of transparent screens are just so attractive. I love the vibrancy and detail of the content, it really helps make it look believable and functional.

Some nice moments involve Banner and Stark throwing content between two separate screens and collaborating instantaneously. I also like that the director positioned Banner and Stark on opposite sides of the screen during an important dialogue. It looks great and highlights the possible benefits of having a transparent screen, like being able to see each other through the content and the ability to interact from both sides.

Finally, I wanted to mention how much I enjoyed seeing the different personalities of Banner and Stark and how that translates in the way they interact with the interfaces. Stark is very fluid and nonchalant, and on the other hand Banner is gentle and precise. Full credit to the actors.

What a fun movie!

Watch the IRON MAN HUD montage
Check out the Stark Tower UI sequence
Check out the Helipad screen UIs
Check out Jayse Hansen’s breakdown of the work

Credits
VFX: Cantina Creative
Marvel VFX Supervisor: Janek Sirrs
Stereo Supervisor: Wes Sewell
Cantina VFX Producer: Sean Cushing
Cantina Creative Director (and HUD master!): Stephen Lawes
Cantina VFX Supervisor: Venti Hristova

Cantina Creative Design and Animation team
Jayse Hansen
Jonathan Ficcadenti
Alan Torres
Navarro Parker
Sang Shin
Asuka Ashizawa
Takashi Takeoka
Sarah Blank
Lukas Weyandt
Leon Nowlin

2 Responses to “Design of ‘The Avengers’ – Interface designs and HUDs”

  1. Erathic says:

    Thanks for sharing, your site is an amazing hub of inspiration !
    By making some little googleling i found a little break-down video of the Iron-man HUD (Avenger).

    check it here : http://www.deathfall.com/forums/content.php?8423-The-Avengers-Creating-the-Iron-Man-HUD

  2. Bytowner says:

    By “Helipad”, you meant “Helicarrier”, right?

    That aside, Creative Cantina’s work on that movie was indeed an amazing collection of imagery in motion!

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