FIELD TRIP #6 - VERTIGO - MOVIE SET DESIGN AND LANDSCAPE DESIGN

 Alfred Hitchcock's 1958 "Vertigo" is considered to be his greatest masterpiece by many critics.  I saw the film for the first time at the Nuart Theatre in Los Angeles back in the mid 1980's, shortly after the movies re-release.  I was captivated by both the movie's haunting tale of mystery and the beauty of San Francisco.

On February 12 and 13th, the San Francisco Symphony screened the film and performed Bernard Herrmann's musical score live as the movie played.  To top off this event, cinema legend Kim Novak appeared for a pre-screening conversation with Steven Winn.

 Kim Novak

Kim Novak

While viewing the film, I began to think of what is involved in creating a complicated movie set.  After doing some basic research, I realized that Movie Set Design and Landscape Design have many things in common.

Both Movie Set Designers and Landscape Designers use their creative talents and experience in order to achieve a setting for a variety of situations.  Both occupations produce all of their designs before the construction phase.  Skills that are vital to both are having artistic abilities, the ability to do research on architectural facts and the  ability to create a design after meeting with the client.

One tool that is used by the Movie Set Designer is the "storyboard".  In the Landscape Design field we use a similar tool, however, we call it the "concept plan".  Both the storyboard and the concept plan are the starting points of a design.  They are both visual tools that convey to the client what the final design will be.

Below, I have placed original storyboards of "Vertigo" next to final scenes from the movie.

Below are concept plans set side by side with the finished landscapes.

Enjoy your movies and gardens!

Diseñador de Jardín,

Mario