Starting the Ruined Fountain

Prisoner of Azkaban‘s clock tower courtyard has a large fountain in the center, featuring arched pediments and four statues of birds eating snakes. [EDIT: Many thanks to bentarr1 for pointing out that the golden eagle devouring a rattlesnake is an important symbol in Mexican culture, ostensibly a tribute to Alfonso Cuarón’s nationality.] Like the rest of the courtyard, the fountain has seen better days – whole chunks of it have crumbled away. This makes for a different challenge than the rest of the castle, which has an aged look but hasn’t actually fallen apart.

Thanks to a variety of folks who’ve taken photos of the technical drawings at the Warner Bros. Studio Tour, I’ve got a lot of detailed reference on the top part of the fountain, so I decided to start there. The fountain will be built in complete, pristine form first…then I get to go in and destroy it. (I’ll make a copy, don’t worry!) I started with some of the arches:

The intersecting curves are tricky to stitch together. I’m again very grateful for Blender’s TinyCAD add-on, which makes the job somewhat less painful, especially because there’s a lot of it here:

It looks great in gray, but it’ll look even better when I apply my standard stone texture from the castle, right?

Ew. Never mind. Looks like I’m gonna need to create a new material specifically for this fountain. I’ll put a pin in that for now. Back to plain gray as we give this thing some rotational symmetry:

Dang, kinda makes me sad that they went and destroyed half of the thing…the pre-eroded design is really pretty! Anyway, the top part’s also got a lot of detail, but this pediment’s no impediment:

Then all that’s left for the top part is to add some pinnacles to the corners – interestingly, not quite the same design as the pinnacles on the Great Hall, or even the nearby clock tower entrance. Voilà:

I dig it! Next up will be the base of the fountain, the columns, the bird statues, and the texturing – not necessarily in that order.