For inspiration, here are some mood boards I’ve put together that could possibly help in constructing out backgrounds and designing the background characters. The first mood board I’ve made mostly by using screenshots from “Out Of The Past” and “To Have and Have Not”. These were all films that influenced my creative process when developing my ideas and characters.
Another film that acted as inspiration was the film “Mean Streets”. I was especially interested bythe sense of immersion created by the bar setting (the music, the way the characters interacted, the lighting and cinematography, etc.).
For character design the main book I used as reference was Preston Blair’s “Advanced Animation”, which can be found here: