In the recently released Zhu Zhu Pets DVD, The Quest for Zhu, there are all manner of beasties ready to threaten the four hamster heroes Mr. Squiggles, Pipsqueak, Num Nums and Chunk. One such danger is a pack of saber-tooth tigers called Zhurassic Zhus.
Today I thought I’d share with you two versions of these growly striped kitties. Like a nature photographer, though remaining at my much safer desk, I was tasked with capturing the behavior of these creatures for inspiration to those that followed me in the creative pipeline. In our story, these fellas reside in the snowy mountain cliffs. Putting myself in the position of the hamsters, I imagined that the most frightening introduction I could have to this life-ending threat would be to perch them above on a cliff looking hungrily down while being framed by the blinding sun. So, I penciled out the pose, scanned it in and added some dramatic flare in Photoshop by including shadows.
Usually when I did these kinds of character development drawings, they would be passed along down the production line just as you see it. This time, however, the director took a shine to the drama in this piece, so he asked my buddy Tom Cain to paint it in color as I moved on to do other drawings. I really loved how Tom handled the whole scene so I thought I’d share with you his terrific version of these snarling, drooling hamster nightmares.