For Sky's recent reboot of the World War II classic „Das Boot,“ I was asked by the producers to assist in creating the conning tower emblem for the eponymous hero submarine.

    In theory this seems like a simple task but the project had a number of complications and restrictions that made things interesting: firstly the result needed to look correct for the historical period; it had to look like it had been sketched by an artistically enthusiastic submariner rather than professional designer; and finally due to potential legal issues of insinuating that anything in the series' narrative had actually occurred, it could not look reminiscent of an actual emblem from a historical boat.

    To accomplish this I hit the history books, immersing myself in the designs seen at the time, in order to try and distil down what motifs and artistic styles were used by German naval artists of the period, and also to establish, as far as possible, what emblems had already been used.

    After trying many different characters, from devils to sharks to octopuses holding torpedos, we arrived at the final scorpion symbol.

    The end result was painted onto the physical set build, used in CGI modelling and even found its way onto the official marketing.

    Images: 2018 ©Nik Konietzny / Bavaria Fiction GmbH. Used with permission.