Tuesday, 1 December 2020

SYOA LfH: Chapter 6 BTS

As you know, the Chapters for the Letters from Hogwarts Stitch Your Own Adventure is now technically over! Throughout it all I gave you a glimpse behind the scenes, and this post is the last of those. I'll be showing you some of the reference photos, some stats and thoughts on the choices/options, initial design sketches, times my test stitching team wanted to kill me...

I will have the usual gallery at the end of the post with your progress pictures, thank you to all those that submitted photos over the year

There is a facebook group to discuss all thing SYOA, which you can join HERE

Behind the Scenes: Chapter 6

Let's get one of my favourite bits, the stats, out the way:

possible SYOA outcomes at end of Chapter 5 = 5.9692247e24

Possible outcomes in:
Chapter 6 =3*25 = 75

possible outcomes in SYOA = 5.9692247e24 * 75 = 4.4769185e26

That's 447,691,850,000,000,000,000,000,000 possible outcomes

I will admit that it was total fan-boying on my part to have Neville re-start Dumbledore's Army once he became staff. He got so much out of it, and I can totally see him wanting to do this. (Also Nevilles story arc is totally one of my favourites). The Room of Requirement was harder to source images for than the others though. Mainly because, it's not part of the studio tour!

In the studio tour you can go into the Great Hall, and they also have a huge model of Hogwarts at the end (used for some of the wider shots). All I had for the Room of Requirement was screen shots of the film and promotional images.

Well, the tour does have piles and piles of props that were used in the junk room version of the Room of Requirement, but it doesn't have the Dumbledores Army hideout, which is the bit that I wanted. And yes, piling up ALL the props (even ones that were rejected from other scenes, or in deleted scenes) were thrown onto the set for the junk room Room of Requirement. Studio Tour take note... I WANT TO HANG OUT IN THERE WITH DUMBLEDORES ARMY!

Screen shots and promo images it was then!
Trying to get a close up of those mannequins online, not that easy 

I tried to match the lighting in these photos, with the roof being a very bright yellow and the back wall and floor being a blueish grey.

For the School Grounds, I used this particular picture from my time at the studio tour as reference

I felt it gave a different view point of the castle, in particular, a different angle from the one used at the top of the frame, while still remaining visually identifiable as Hogwarts. This inclusion of the castle was actually part of why the castle in the frame is based on the silhouette as you approach on the lake for the first time, rather than anything detailed. I wanted the detailed castle to be in this Chapter rather than in the frame. 

The large shapes on either side of the foreground are the stone circle, you know, where Hermione punches Malfoy. Cause frankly I love those standing stones, and it seemed to me like an ideal outdoor area that they would use for a Patronus lesson.

The Great Hall was an interesting one to pattern.

The studio tour was invaluable for this!


You'll notice in that picture, that the roof is missing, that's because in the films, it is CGI as the roof shows the sky outside.

This handy model though shows how the roof would be added. Bonus shot of my friend Pam who went with me to the studios! Hello Pam!

Handily I was able to get a shot through the door of the model, which was the angle that I was wanting :)

 This model, hanging above the path of the studio tour, was the one they had to get the rafters

When it came to getting the rafters into the pattern, I wanted to tweed (or blend) the threads, so you would see both sky and rafter in the same space. This also ment that I couldn't really put too much detail into them, although there is a load of detail in the models!

The Great Hall has these fantastic hanging lanterns/fire bowls, with winged versions of the different house animals.

I did attempt to get these represented in the Great Hall pattern, which is why the two aren't mirror images!

When I described this project to people, and I mentioned the Patronuses Chapter, I would always get asked "how did you get the list of Patronuses to do?"

Well, on Mugglenet there is a list of all the known patronuses given on Pottermore so far. You can find it here if you want. Now this is a long list. I wasn't going to do 142 different patronus patterns.

I love you all, but not that much haha.

First off I removed the ones that were marked up as rare or unusual. I put back in some of the ones that were of significant importance though; such as the Doe, the Stag, and the Heron (JK Rowlings patronus - hind sight huh?). For all the others, I tried to classify them down as much as possible. So all the varieties of cat, such as Calico Cat (my patronus), Nebelung Cat, Ginger Cat, Black and White Cat... etc etc became "domestic cat".

I realised while I was getting the reference photos together that I had Lion, Eagle, and Snake.... but Badger wasn't on my list. I had to add it, how could I leave my own house unrepresented!

I was initially going to sit and learn how to draw all these animals, to the correct proportions etc like I did the animals for the Care of Magical Creatures section. Thankfully, I remembered a handy bit of macstitches functionality, Onion Skins! This is where I can put a picture underneath the grid for me to draw over.

I tried as much as possible to get pictures of the animals being active; of them running or flying or being protective; because that's how I see Patronuses. They don't just stand there. Funnily enough, you don't find pictures of hedgehogs running... unless you're wanting your Patronus to be Sonic, so the Hedgehog is sat there, fighting off the dementors with the power of cute.

I did all the backstitching first, wanting to put in just enough to get the spirit of the animal, but leave enough out to get the effect of them not being entirely there. After I had the backstitch done I then would colour it in with the blues. If I had only the one background, then I would have worked out some tweeding effects like I did with the Great Hall roof, so that it would give a half there look to it, but there was going to be too many variables for that (if any of you do it as a alternative then let me know!)


Wendy S
Jess K
Shelley D
Izzy M
and, of course, the long suffering Team Test Stitch

I also want to take this opportunity to thank all of you that have taken part. This turned out SO MUCH BIGGER than I ever thought that it would. I mean, seriously, I was going to be happy if there was 1000 people in the group, and there is now 8,398! It's been great to see the excitement and joy as you adventure through your time at Hogwarts. I'm really looking forward to not only the Magic Kingdom and Animal Crossing SALs, but to the next big Stitch Your Own Adventure which I am already working on