Gabrial Ken Larson Set Designer
Traditional and Computer Aided Design and Graphics
Los Angeles, California, USA, Terra, Solar System Sol, Milky Way Galaxy, Local Group, Virgo Super Cluster, Local Universe
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Kenneth A. Larson has over 30 years experience in designing and building scenery for the Entertainment Industry working on Features, Television, 3 & 4-Camera* TV, Commercials, print ads, Theme Parks, Theme Interior Design, Architecture, Theme Architecture, Trade Show Display, and other related areas of Environmental and Entertainment Design. Ken is most experienced in motion picture and television, having worked on such films as 3 Batman movies, Hunt for Red October, several Star Trek projects, Shrek, The Polar Express, and countless others. Ken works primarily in the Hollywood region**. Ken Larson uses both traditional drafting (pencil on board) and computer aided drafting in creating his set designs. Ken is also an expert model maker having started as a Visual Effects Model Maker and in time, has built most forms of models including theme park and Set Design models.
* By 3 & 4-Camera, I mean the various forms 3-camera, 4-camera, 3 1/2-camera, sit-com.
** Ken Larson usually works in the region of the Hollywood - Culver City / Century City - Burbank / Studio City / Universal City triangle in the Los Angeles, California area. Ken has ventured west into Simi Valley and as far as Oxnard, north into Santa Clarita and Palmdale, east to Pasadina and beyond, and south to LAX and Long Beach. Ken has worked throughout the Los Angeles County and Ventura County region of Southern California, U. S. A. At some point in Ken's career, Ken has worked at all the major studios. Ken is a native of the San Fernando Valley, not far from the No-Ho theater and arts community.


Ken Larson is versatile and multi-disciplined in the field of scenic design and construction. Ken is equally talented at using both computer aided and traditional approaches to Set Design. Ken has many years of experience building models in most forms including models for camera and study models and now does much of his design work using virtual computer models. Kenneth works in 2D CADD drafting and 3D CAD (Computer Aided Design) modeling and CADM (Computer Aided Design and Manufacturing). Ken works in Visual Effects and live action cinema. While Ken has not yet worked in theatre scenery, he did spend over a year working in architecture specializing in theatre buildings. Ken had built scenery, props, mock-ups, and Special Effects before shifting emphasis primarily to design in the mid-1990s. Ken creates physical and virtual models and renderings. Kenneth has also created graphics for the film industry using traditional and computer skills.

Ken has extensive experience with Visual Effects, CGI, in adition to most aspects of set, prop, and miniature construction. Ken began as a Visual Effects Model Maker creating physical models of space craft and landscapes for Buck Rogers in the 25th Century. Ken got his start in the early days of motion control for miniatures and still enjoys model making. In recent years, he has lent his creative talents to Set Designing for all-CGI films such as Shrek and The Polar Express.

Ken Larson has been a Set Designer for numerous Motion Picture and Television productions. Some projects include: Set Designs for Visual EffectsMiniatures for Batman and Robin, Bradley Infantry Fighting Vehicle for The Pentagon Wars, period CGI sets for Shrek and The Polar Express, Absolut Versace sets for still shots for Vogue magazine. Also sets for X-Files, Collateral Damage, American Pie II, C. S. I., Ghost Whisperer, Lie to Me, and American Horror Story. While Ken loves Set Design, he has on occasion acted as Art Director and Set Designer on several student films, short films, and small features.

There is sometimes a misunderstanding in the Art Department that either people design sets, or if they lack design talent, they build them. They sometimes assume that Ken can't design scenery because he once built scenery. The truth is that as a Visual Effects Model Maker, Ken designed much of what he built. Ken has an AA degree in Architecture and a BA degree in Interior Design. Ken is proficient in several CAD and graphic computer programs. Ken is a better scenery designer after having 18 years experience building scenery and has now been a Set Designer for alomst as long.
Set Designers 50th Anniversary Party
Set Designers 50th Anniversary Party. Event planning.

The Castle
The Last Castle. Study Art Department model.

Lucky Goldstar
Lucy Goldstar, CADD for a simulator ride.

Sea Shadow
Sea Shadow.

Borg Invasion
Borg Invasion a Star Trek attraction.

Absolut Versace
Absolut Versace, Fashion shoot. AutoCAD ©

Titus
Titus, Pencil drafting for a Sit-Com.

Cracker
Cracker, AutoCAD ©.


IATSE Member I.A.T.S.E.*** locals:
Local 800 Art Directors,
Local 847 Set Designers and Model Makers (now part of Local 800),
Local 839 Motion Picture Screen Cartoonists (Honorable Withdraw),
Local 44 Affiliated Property Craftspersons, Prop Makers, Carpenters and Special Effects (Honorable Withdraw).

Senior and Computer Specialist rating in Set Designers Local 800.
Member Visual Effects Society. VFX Society

Theme Park Click here for Theme Park
Click here for Trade Show and Museum Displays Trade Show


Models Click here for Set Design and Architectural models.

Click here for Pre-Visualization for Set Design Gabriel


Set Design for Models & CGI Click here for Set Design for Model and CGI


Click here for Art Direction / Production Design Art Direction


Computer and Traditional Drafting

Kenneth Larson is a Computer Specialist Set Designer, one of only a few Set Designers with the Computer Specialist rating within Local 847. Ken prefers working with computers because it is faster and more accurate. He began working with Computer Graphics and CAD in 1990.

When working as a Computer Specialist Set Designer, Ken works primarily in AutoCAD© which he started using in 1991 using Release 10 and currently uses AutoCAD Architectural Desktop 2004. Ken also use Photoshop, Illustrator, VectorWorks, Poser, 3D Studio Viz, 3D Studio Max, Excel, and numerous other programs. Kenneth Larson is one of a limited number of Set Designers who produce computer renderings in AutoCAD©. Ken also works with Walk-Through, Fly-Through, Pre-Visualization,

Kenneth Larson equally enjoys working with pencil, marker, watercolor, if you prefer. He began traditional drafting with a pencil in Junior High School.

Alien Empire
Alien Empire, AutoCAD ©

Outbreak
Outbreak, AutoCAD © for CGI.

The Spaces
The Spaces. Pencil.

Lucky Goldstar
Lucky Goldstar. AutoCAD © & Laser Cutting.
ripple button Why you should want a Computer Specialist Set Designer in your Art Department


Background

Born in the Media District of Burbank, Ken has always had a passion for buildings, theme parks, and sets. While not from a show biz family, Ken has been successful in the Entertainment Industry by acquiring and using his unique skills. Set Designing is Ken's passion. He has many years experience and a wide range of skills. Kenneth Larson lives and breaths Set Design and can think of nothing that he'd rather have as a profession, yet he has a wide range of other interests.

Ken is a film maker in the sense that his work aids in the film making process, but his passion is the scenery and he prefers working behind the camera. Ken does enjoy still photography.

It was probably logical for Ken to transition from an interest in theme parks to film sets It was always the scenery that interested
American Pie 2
American Pie 2.

Indiana Boomtown Casino
Indiana Boomtown Casino study model.
Ken the most. It was not the round and round and up and down that Ken enjoyed, it was studying the scenery. Ken would go to Disneyland and spend hours studying and photographing the scenery and observing the transitions form one themed area to another. This would explain his reduced interest in non-themed amusement parks. Even today, on the weekend Ken visits historic buildings, sites, and museums and studies the details. Ken has a large library of reference from all areas of the world and major time periods. It is always helpful to study other scenery, but Ken likes to keep grounded in reality by studying the real thing.

While Kenneth Larson is dedicated to his profession, on the weekends, he volunteers at all three branches of the Los Angeles County Natural History Museum system where he has served a combined total of over 25 years. Ken and his wife visit other museums and historical buildings and sites throughout the Southern California area and the Western United States. Ken Larson has a large research slide collection and library. Ken is developing two web sites dedicated to historically significant architecture in California and to the California Mission system. Ken is turning his passion for the California Missions into art and sculpture.


Note: These drawings are presented here for portfolio purposes only. These drawings are not available for sale or to be given away in hard copy or digitally in any scale. I will be happy to show hard-copy during a legitimate job interview for Set Designer.
T-square
Weird Lones, pilot, 2014, AutoCAD ® 2012.

Locked In, feature, 2014, AutoCAD ® 2012 & SketchUp® 2013.

The Last Ship, Season 1, 2013-14, AutoCAD ® 2012.

Quarry, pilot, 2013, AutoCAD ® 2012.

Two Wrongs, pilot, 2013, AutoCAD ® 2012.

The New Normal, Season 1, 2012, AutoCAD ® 2012.

Race to Save Nome, feature, 2012, AutoCAD ® 2012.

Jimmy Kimmel Live, 2012, AutoCAD ® 2012.

Untitled Philadelphia Lawyers Project, pilot, 2012, AutoCAD ® 2012.

Ben and Kate, 2012, AutoCAD ® 2012.

Lucky Stiff, Feature, 2012, AutoCAD ® 2012.

Friday Night Dinner - Pilot, 2012, AutoCAD ® 2004.

American Horror Story - Season 1, 2011, AutoCAD ® 2004.

The Guilt Trip, Feature, 2011, AutoCAD ® 2004.

The New Girl - Pilot, 2011, AutoCAD ® 2004.

Lie to Me, Season 3, 2010, AutoCAD ® 2004.

Rizzoli & Isles, Season 1, 2010, AutoCAD ® 2004.

Rockford Files (remake - pilot), 2010, AutoCAD ® 2004.

Justified, Season 1, 2009-10, AutoCAD ® 2004.

Southland, Season 2, 2009, AutoCAD ® 2004.

End of Steve, Pilot, 2008. AutoCAD ® 2004.

Golden Oaks Ranch Project, Special Project, 2008. AutoCAD ® 2004.

Ghost Whisperer, Seasosn 3 and 1/3 of Season 4, 2007 - 2008. AutoCAD ® 2004.

Superheros, retakes of feature, 2008. AutoCAD ® 2004.

Dexter, Season 2, 2008. AutoCAD ® 2004.

Atlanta, , Pilot, 2007. AutoCAD ® 2004.

Journeyman, Pilot, 2007. AutoCAD ® 2004.

Californication, Pilot, 2007. AutoCAD ® 2004.

Sleeper Cell, Season 2, 2006. AutoCAD ® 2004.

Invasion
TV IconInvasion, Season One, 2005 - 2006. AutoCAD ® 2004.


Gilmore Girls
TV IconGilmore Girls, 2004.

Wisconsin State Lottery. Preliminary sketch for bidding purposes for Cinema Production Services, Inc. The criteria was to make a Rube Goldberg like device to propel a lottery ball through a dozen events including two specific events, leading to the final result. AutoCAD ADT 2002 and pencil. 2004.
ER
TV IconER, 2003.
Sea Shadow
In Spring of 2003, I was hired to work as Computer Specialist Set Designer on an untitled Sony feature regarding futuristic Naval
and aircraft carrier designs. My start date was pushed several times until the show was finally canceled. While I waited, I began researching the latest navel designs and produced this 3D computer model of the Sea Shadow stealth ship. AutoCAD ©. 2003.
Everyday Life
TV IconEveryday Life, TV Pilot, This was not a typical Sit-Com, but rather, improvisation. AutoCAD Architectural Desktop 2002. 2004.
The Spaces
TV Icon The Spaces. Set Design for futuristic sets for a sit-com pilot. Pencil, 2003.
Set Designers 50th Anniversary Party
Set Designers 50th Anniversary Party. AutoCAD Architectural Desktop 3.3 ©. 2002.


Dinner with Kip. Art Director, 2002.

The Polar Express
Feature
The Polar Express for Castle Rock Entertainment. This was my second all CGI feature. I used AutoCAD Architectural Desktop 3.3 © to produce Set Designs for CGI sets. 2003.

I have been asked not to show any of my work on this show until after the film is released. If you wish to interview me for a legitimate job as a Set Designer, I will be happy to show hard-copy during the interview.

Borg Invasion
Borg Invasion a Star Trek attraction for a new Space Theme Park in Germany. I used AutoCAD Architectural Desktop 3.3 ©. 2002.
I Spy
Feature FilmI Spy reshoots. Bridge set and aircraft cockpit. Pencil, AutoCAD © and models. 2002
C. S. I.
TV Icon I have worked on C. S. I. - Crime Scene Investigators four times including the episode which was also the pilot for C. S. I. Miami. I began designing new production offices and reconfigured one set to move to a new studio. Later, I worked on several sets. The most recent work as Set Designer on C. S. I. was working on an episode to be used as a pilot for the spin-off series, C. S. I. Miani. Pencil, 2000-2002

Titus
TV IconTitus, pencil drafting and foam core models of sets for the Television series. 2001.
American Pie 2
Feature FilmSecret Disguise - American Pie 2, pencil drafting and foam core models. I was one of three Set Designers on this sequil to the popular feature American Pie. I worked on the light house, Dog Years Restaurant, Spanish Apartment, spotting plans, window and door details and interior room for the main house set, and other. 2001.
The Castle
Feature Film The Last Castle - Set Design Models. I worked at DreamWorks before the show moved to Tennessee. 2001.
Collateral Damage
Feature Film Collateral Damage. I worked as a Set Designer on this feature for three months. Sets included modifications to an existing house to fit our needs and converting an existing location to look like a street, Metro Station and museum. Also drew a cliff face, other smaller sets and objects for Set Dressing. I worked using traditional drawing (with pencil) and model making (foam core and card board) skills. 2000
Gabrielle
Gabrielle. I was the entire Art Department for this student film, including most of the set construction and painting. We remodeled one set and built two others, which was quite ambitious for a student film. AutoCAD © R15, 2000
Family First/That's My Bush
TV IconThat's My Bush, original title Family First. Set of the White House State Dining Room, pencil, 2000
Dog Days
TV IconDog Days. I worked as a Set Designer on the three permanent sets, the house (remodeled from the pilot which I didn't work on), the Venice Marketplace, and the junk yard. My last day, I also completed the Italian Restaurant which was about 50% stock units. After three weeks, I left due to a production scheduling conflict. AutoCAD © R14, 2000.
House Beautiful/Art Directors Guild; Hollywood Bungalow Project
House Beautiful/Art Directors Guild; Hollywood Bungalow Project. A still photo spread in House Beautiful magazine (November 2000) and tour at Pacific Design center, July 13 to August 31, 2000. All of the Art Department work was completed by volunteer Art Directors and Set Designers. Pencil, 2000.
Kris' Apartment
Kris' Apartment - plan and elevations for a set of this turn of the (previous) century San Francisco Apartment. Pencil, 2000
Cabot
Cabot sailing ship set - plan. First US ship to sail around the world. AutoCAD © R15, 2000
Summer Nights
Summer Nights, Floor 1 and 2 plan. Contemporary house set. AutoCAD © R15, 2000


The Continuing Adventures of Kid Dynamo, Art Director, 1999.

Freak Boy
I was most of the Art Department for Freak Boy. AutoCAD © R14. 1999
Generic Hospital
Hospital Emergency Room set. AutoCAD © R14, 1998

Ailen Empire
Feature Film Alien Empire. Plan and section of "Camp" set. AutoCAD © R12, 1997
X-Files
TV Icon I made numerous set designs and director drawings for the series X-Files when it first moved to Century City from Canada. AutoCAD © R14. 1998
Shrek
Feature Film I made numerous set designs and computer models/renderings for Shrek, a CGI film for DreamWorks Animation. I worked as an animator in Visual Development. AutoCAD © R14. 1998.

The Pentagon Wars
TV Icon For The Pentagon Wars I made several drawings for the picture vehicle, Bradley Infantry Fighting Vehicle. These were plant-on details added to a real vehicle of a smaller size, made to look like a half scale working model of the final design. The story was about the development of this vehicle and how tests were falsified so that the unsafe vehicle would pass. AutoCAD © R14, 1997.
Batman and Robin
Feature Film Batman and Robin Visual Effects and Computer Specialist Set Designer. Dozens of drawings both new and as-built of miniatures. AutoCAD © R12, 1997


Cracker
TV IconCracker Police Station and house sets. Police station reflected ceiling plan and detail.
AutoCAD © R14, 1997
On the Run
On the Run Plan and elevation of Mexican village set. AutoCAD © R12, 1997
Absolut Versace
Absolut Versace, photo spread for Vogue Magazine including sets, furniture, and otehr objects made of ice. AutoCAD © R12, 1997
Temple
Feature Film Temple set, for the feature Ramayan. AutoCAD © R14, 1995

Contact
Feature Film Set Design model for Contact, 1996. This is the sphere that Jody Foster travels in.
Indiana Boomtown Casino
Indiana Boomtown Casino study model. Click for more models. Plastic, 1995
Eye Sign
Feature Film2D drawing of "Eye Sign" for Batman Forever. AutoCAD © R12, 1995
Outbreak
Feature Film I drew several sheets of details for a CGI ship for Outbreak for Boss Film. AutoCAD © R12, 1994

Lucky Goldstar
Lucy Goldstar, simulator ride. I both managed the laser cutting and worked as model maker for Boss Film, 1992. This is the finished model which covered approximately 2,5000 square feet and contained tens of thousands of laser cut windows. Had the windows been cut by hand, the sequence would not have been economical to produce. AutoCAD © R12, 1992


Camera Angle Template
Camera Angle Template. These are valuable tools for Set Designers. AutoCAD © R14, 1998

How to be a Set Designer.

What is a Set Designer and an Art Director?

In Theater, New York, and most places outside of "Hollywood," an Art Director and a Set Designer is the same position. Production Designer is a recent position, used sparingly before the 1960s. Now, a Production Designer does what an Art Director formerly did and an Art Director does what an Assistant Art Director formerly did. Oddly, there are still Assistant Art Directors doing tasks similar to Lead Set Designer.
In "Hollywood," the Art Director and the Set Designer are distinct positions. The Set Designer's job is to take the concepts and ideas of the Production Designer, Art Director, and Illustrator and translate these into working drawings and models to guide the actual construction of sets, props, picture vehicles, signage, and miniatures.
Note: On an IA*** production in "Hollywood," the only people legally allowed to do draftings or Art Department models are Local 847 Set Designers and Model Makers members in good standing.
Kenneth Larson works mostly as a Set Designer and prefers this position, but has worked occasionally as an Art Director/Production Designer.
*** IA is a commonly used abbreviation for, International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, Moving Picture Technicians, Artists and Allied Crafts of the United States, Its Territories and Canada. Other abbreviations are IATSE, I.A.T.S.E., International.
Ailen Empire
Alien Empire.

Temple
Temple set for Ramayan.

Gabrielle
Gabrielle.


Set Design Resume

Updated: January 30, 2013

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Full Credits
Updated: January 30, 2013

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Visual Resume
Updated: June 14, 2003

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