As a Lord of the Rings fan, I'm familiar and a fan of Alan Lee and John Howe's concept art for the films and illustrations for the books. The city of Minas Tirith is one city to look at for influences for the Invisible Cities brief, as it was in a part inspired by a Medieval Venice, but also Mont Saint-Michel in France. There is something about the design that fits the description of the city Diomira in Calvino's anthology of Invisible Cities. I tried to find images for different aspects of Venice and different moods and tones. The canal is described in a number of Calvino's cities and I'm looking for designs which show the architecture either flowing and subtle or tight, narrow and stylized.
I wanted to find and express a desire to research the various different aspect of the cities that make them unique rather than the city itself so I went back to John Howes illustrations of Shelob's tunnel for a reference to the city of Argia; the stony city. The description of dampness and the harsh environment destroying bodies and long dark tunnels reminded me vividly of the description of Shelob's evil venom and malice eroding away rock and slinging her giant body to form tunnels, creating harsh, jagged rocks.
Looking at Anastasia and Armilla, which have major connection to water and bathing designs, I thought about Roman Baths and pillars. For Armilla, it would be more in decay and abandoned, which is the contemporary look at the baths. I included the chunk of onyx as it may be useful to go into the detail of the geology that makes up the city and trade that goes in, especially for Anastasia.
I found a few spider webs to fit the description of Ersilia and Octavia, looking for denser, heavier webs that could support a city, and thought about where the webs could be supported from. The ladders helped think about dramatic perspectives for shots of cities, like Baucis, Thekla and Zenobia, which have imagery to do with structures and construction, being stilted and tall.
This will help as an early board of reference to ideas that arise from the project. I more influences I want to share, so this is a starting point of what I want to come across with my thumbnails and sketches.