Sky Valley Casino & Resort

Venturalvn

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Finally getting around to posting this backlogged project I've been kicking around behind the scenes for a while. Since we bought our house at the end of 2018 I've been looking for an excuse to create a new set to exist alongside The Beach, and it would appear the time is now to bring it to life.

I tried starting an idea thread a while ago, that more or less was a wash. Hey they can't all be winners!
https://www.pokerchipforum.com/threads/indian-casino-tribute-need-help-on-name-ideas.21338/

Background:
I grew up playing in Indian casinos in the southern California area when I was 18. As I was located in Santa Barbara for many years (The Beach!), Chumash casino was our regular stomping ground. We also frequented Morongo casino, and over the years have patronized San Manuel and Pechanga.

To that end, I wanted to create a set that paid tribute to the local tribes, as their lands are steeped in the culture in various areas of SoCal, and of course their gaming venues turned me into a gambling monster in a very formative time in life.

Location:
At the end of 2018 we bought our first house in a town called Simi Valley. This name is derived from a bastardization of the Chumash name Shiyimi Valley, aptly named for the type of clouds that (used to) hang over the valley.

There is a painted cave located in Simi Valley, with petroglyphs left over from the Chumash that used to inhabit the area. The location of it is no longer published and th land inaccessible in order to preserve it, however the photographs taken from inside show many symbols of the sun, mother Earth, condors, and many others.

Simi Valley also belongs to larger stretch of valley referred to by the Chumash tribe as Sky Valley, which stretches from Ventura County (where I grew up) all the way to the edge of the Los Angeles area.

The Chips:
Sun Fly Hybrid 39mm HB001
Sun Fly Hybrid 43mm HB005

This idea was first inspired by the Boardwalk GB when I got the 39mm and the PCF 43mm mold in my hands. As the casinos I got started in utilized RT Plastics for a while, I was planning on doing a mock RT plastic.

Over time it has morphed into a mock BJ V7, with some liberties taken in graphics. I'll be mixing edge symbols that aren't stock molds for BJ, as well as turning the face symbols into the mountain symbol on all chips to represent the valley.

The feel of the logo/inlay is meant to be reminiscent of older day Native American casino brands, while the logotype will mix in some modern elements that have been replacing them as they rebrand over the years. The California condor is a bird revered by many tribes, and the Chumash in particular even have a Condor Dance.

I also wanted to try to give a shot at a white inlay background. Doing the gradient on the Beach inlay seemed appropriate, but I wanted to go a different direction here. I want to keep the graphics exciting enough to carry a white background, but simple enough that I can reuse images for tap handles, pint glasses, and any other custom accoutrements that will arise that's needs a simplified scale.

I have a lot of work to do. There's a lot of updating to be done and tweaks to be made, so here goes nothin.

Initial mockup:
download_20200107_014406.png
 
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Venturalvn

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Thanks guys! I will definitely open up for sample sets whenever this gets off the ground. Thinking mid year.

If the denom is on the mold, then you don't have to have it on the inlay, right? Leaves more room to expand the graphics?
It's common in BJ chips to have both, and I know exactly why...if I only left denoms on the mold and not the inlay, I'd hear this fifty times a night: how much is the blue one?

Did you try a bit of snow on the mountains? Might look good.
I haven't thought about it because we don't get snow in this area. I might give it a whirl as I work through iterations for this, but I'll likely end without it. I'm thinking the colored shading might provide this same effect, though.
 

Erich Wise

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Have you tried making the eagle a stand in for the V in valley? adjusting the wings to a more acute angle and keep the mountain bottoms away from following the line of the eagle wings directly.
 

Amish Rabbi

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I would have someone draw an eagle in the same style as the mountains. One is all smooth and sharp and the other looks very lumpy.

This might be taken care of with a new graphic, but at actual size the eagle is too small IMO, losing the denom would allow it to be bigger and easier to see.

I would also have all the inner ring text/graphics with their bottoms on the same circle. Especially on the 1 in your mock up the distance from center is drastically different
 

Venturalvn

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Have you tried making the eagle a stand in for the V in valley? adjusting the wings to a more acute angle and keep the mountain bottoms away from following the line of the eagle wings directly.
I did good around with a couple versions of making the condor part of the logotype, but once I hit this version I stopped.
I would have someone draw an eagle in the same style as the mountains. One is all smooth and sharp and the other looks very lumpy.

This might be taken care of with a new graphic, but at actual size the eagle is too small IMO, losing the denom would allow it to be bigger and easier to see.

I would also have all the inner ring text/graphics with their bottoms on the same circle. Especially on the 1 in your mock up the distance from center is drastically different
The bumpy vs straight thing is actually priority #1 on my next revision. To be honest I was working on multiple versions late at night (morning) and was too gassed to start tuning things. Got to a rough draft and went to bed.

I'll also be cleaning up and tuning all the details in terms of spacing, etc!
 

Erich Wise

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So, my own personal preference, I like design that doesn't give everything away at first glance, so I like that someone might "discover" the condor. But I think I am in the minority on this site. Everyone seems to like simple design with large denominations. Though perhaps go with the darker blue on the 1 for the $1 if you know what I mean.
 

Venturalvn

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Haven't had any time at all to work on this, but the plan is still to get it done in 2020. Testing out a "bumpy" mountain to better match the condor. Both will be redone to a tee once I have time, this is more of sketch to test the eyes at a printable detail.

condorMountainOnWingsJagged.jpg
 

gmunny

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Very cool idea. Love the name and the logo! Thanks the background on Simi Valley. i live fairly close off the 118. I didn't realize the Chumash had tribes there.
 

Venturalvn

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Testing out another outline. Going to need to do up some graphics for the condor obviously, and do up a different set of mountains. Will have to adjust the semi circle to match the bend of the inlay. Just borrowing assets for a quick outline.

This type of idea feels more usable on a grander a scale to me in terms of accessories. Feels like a better print style for pint glasses, dealer buttons, bar taps, etc.

halfDomePCFMock.png
 

Erich Wise

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I dig the wings shooting past the semi circle. The mountain follows too closely to the condor. I kind of like the condor as silhouette, but look forward to your improvements. this is also an improvement.
 

Venturalvn

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I dig the wings shooting past the semi circle. The mountain follows too closely to the condor. I kind of like the condor as silhouette, but look forward to your improvements. this is also an improvement.
Yeah I'm gonna have to shoot a mountain peak more to the middle of the arch so its visible behind the condor.
 

allforcharity

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Somehow, at the moment, I'm not feeling the new design. I like the elements of the old one a bit better. But I agree that the graphics placement needs to be worked on a bit. Have you thought about this? Looking at your original inlay graphic:
- move the mountains, with the convex lower border, to the bottom of the inlay
- move the eagle (the one without the full silhouette), to the center of the chip, and enlarge so the wing tips span the diameter
- put your text right above the eagle
- move the numerical denom right up to the top and center
 

Venturalvn

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The dream is not dead! I have some free time coming back up so I'm back to the drawing board. I feel like I'm definitely getting to the right color palette and feel for the Chumash Indian tribe and local area. I'm pretty happy with the logo text, but there's still some stuff missing from the inlay itself.

  1. Possibly need some details/shadows on the mountains, although i'm trying desperately not to make things too complicated for printing at a 1" size.
  2. Something needs to go in the sky above the logo in the inlay. I have a condor vector I worked up, but it's likely too modernized for the feel I'm going for.

1600212739915.png


1600212668326.png
 

allforcharity

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Quite the difference from what has come before. I like it!

Just throwing this out there:
- increase the size of the eagle (about double the width and height), and move it to the right centered and directly above the world "valley"
- move the denom to the left so you can see the whole river (or is it a road?)
- increase the font size of "casino & resort"
 

Venturalvn

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Quite the difference from what has come before. I like it!

Just throwing this out there:
- increase the size of the eagle (about double the width and height), and move it to the right centered and directly above the world "valley"
- move the denom to the left so you can see the whole river (or is it a road?)
- increase the font size of "casino & resort"
Is it a road or a river... exactly! It's actually based on a road out here but I wanted to leave the ambiguity so it could be interpreted as a valley river.

Yeah I'm skeptical on keeping the condor at all. The "stick" condor in the logo text is actually a real Chumash petroglyph found in one of the painted caves nearby. Same as the sun. I'm leary about keeping 2 versions of the same bird in such close proximity. Might try swapping it out with a sun graphic and moving it up, right, and upsizing to take up more space.
 

Venturalvn

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Messing with sizing and detailing. Trying some zoom on the mountains + detailing to take up some more space and avoid any print-at-size issues. Bigger condor to remove some whitespace. Bigger logo text and smaller denom.

Still not sure if I'm happy with the space above the logo...


1600274436822.png
 
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