The inside of Weta Workshop is a pretty cool place. Despite its true function as a physical effects workshop, it often feels more like a museum of Weta's staggering film history.
Weapons line the walls, suits of armour, both ancient and futuristic, continually stand guard and, best of all, there's a full size T-Rex skull in one of the hallways. I have even been caught hugging it, but it was all above board. I have a girlfriend, alright! It's totally normal.
Any which way you look at it, this is an easy place to get inspired. Hidden away in the middle of the 65,000 square foot office complex is the design department and upstairs, detached from all other humans, is my little work hole.
Here, every day, I'm whipped mercilessly by my tormentor Richard Taylor and forced against my will to draw robots, rayguns and dinosaurs. I hate every minute of it and I’m pleading to you now: please send in the SAS to free me from this perpetual torture, before it's too late.
To emotionally endure the horror, however, I've made myself at home with plastic knick-knacks, such as McFarlane army men (great reference), dinosaur toys and an Ashley Wood Robot (a gift from Richard – he ceases the whipping to do something nice sometimes, although I think it's some sort of Stockholm syndrome technique).
My favourite piece is a Jamie Beswarick sculpture and a District 9 gun prop. I always have that there, balanced precariously above my drawing table where at any point it might fall down and break my wrists… It makes me feel special.
I like a lot of visual stimulation, and I'm one of those people who needs to surround themselves with their own work. It reminds me that I can actually do this stuff.
Words and illustrations: Greg Broadmore (opens in new tab)
Greg Broadmore has worked at Weta Workshop since 2002, as lead concept artist on District 9 and concept artist on King Kong. He is also the creator of Dr Grordbort's comic series. This article originally appeared in ImagineFX (opens in new tab).