Monday, 30 July 2007

Flash 23 - 27th July

Spent last week getting to know flash a little better. I didn't have much confidence with Flash but after being talked through it by the lovely Marc Lewis (that man has so much patience) I was able to do some really fun stuff. I practiced at lip sync, which is something I still have to get the hang of. Avoiding it wont make it go away ha ha. We were also working on some short stings for this years Eisteddfod. We had to come up with an idea for a series of 10 second sketches to be viewed on mobile phones and keep in mind that a new sting can be downloaded every day. I only came up with one idea but played with it and developed my flash skills a little more, learning the benefits of turning frames into symbols and 'Auto Tweening'. It was nice that we each got to work with our own ideas and ease our way into what could be quite a dificult program if you don't know how to use it. So I'm feeling a lot more confident about using the program in the coming weeks on out industry briefs.

Friday, 20 July 2007

So here are a few frames from the film.

Well, I was working straight through into yesterday finishing off the drawings and putting the whole film together in Premiere. I'm really pleased with the way it all turned out and the way it was laid out. I was happy to be able to treat the drawing side as a comic book, something I've always been interested in, but never really explored. It was tricky because I still had to balance the comic look and turning it into a film, so some frames were quite repetitive. But it looked nice when they are all put together, and given a bit of life. It was harder work drawing each panel, and I did have to compromise and take shortcuts, but I think it paid off. The most time consuming part was the colouring and shading, but I was pleased I managed to pull that off ^__^ I was also plesed I got to learn a newer version of Premiere too. The features are much better that the old one, it's a little similar to After Effects in some ways, which has boosted my confidence about using that program again.

Tuesday, 17 July 2007


Over the last two weeks I've been working on visualising a short personal story. Its being done in a comic book style and then put together in premiere to make a short film. This is what it's looking like so far. Really enjoying it at the mo, though it's touch and go if I'm going to finish it to the standard I want it.

Friday, 13 July 2007

Visiting Beryl.

Today we went to Beryl studio's where Joanna Quinn is based. We met her again and she showed us around the studio. We were shown the layouts and the work process, how they go from idea to storyboard to line-test and then the finished product. It was interesting to see how they adapted Joanna's hand coloured style and applied it digitally in After Effects, something I didn't know you could do in that program. We were then shown some work in progress in After Effects which was also cool. I really liked the studio, it was smaller that some of the other studio's I've visited, but it wasn't a bad thing, there was a stong sence of community, even if most of the employees were freelance. I wanted to swipe some of the artwork off the walls though XD

Tuesday 10th July onwards!

I should really be updating my blog every day, but I'm getting carried away with our new project now and I keep forgetting. It's really different to anything I've done before, mainly because it's a personal story about me, and using my own narrative. We had a visit from Ian Staples on tuesday, to help us create better story telling and he was such a huge help.
I'm usually really shy when writing things and letting other people see it, but he understood what I wanted to get acrooss in my story and he really liked it, which boosted my confidence a bit. This sis a really hard story to tell.

Wednesday 11th July
Today we recorded our narrative for our films, that was, scary, ha ha. The first recording I was really nervous and read the script way too fast. I slowed down by the second recording, but still managed to get some words muddled, but I had enough to put together for one successful narrative. Made a start on actually drawing the story out, which is harder than I thought it would be, and there is a lot to be done.

Thursday 12th July
Spent all day working on the drawings for my film. I'm about halfway throught the drawing stage, but I still need to tackle the more impotant drawings. I'm saving those till last so I feel more confident about getting them out and to the point.

Monday, 9 July 2007

Of storytelling and Atticus

This morning was dedicated to picking a story I wanted to tell in two minutes. I had a few ideas but none of them really sung. So I'm still trying to think of one now. I want something that would be visually appealing, and I know the style I want to do it in, I just need a good story tis all. It's hard to find a good story about me...
But we basically looked at all the points that makes a story a good one, so with that in mind I'm going to sit and think about something in my life that might be interesting to share with you.

After luch we went to Atticus where we were shown around the studio and watched some of the work they do there. They specialise in animation and website design and use Maya and After Effects. The content they animate is really challenging, dealing with pharmasuticals and architecture, they have to know a lot about what they are animating to get it right. Really tough job, but the environment seemed lovely.

Tuesday the 3rd, onwards!

He he got a bit side tracked with the bloggin ^_^

Tuesday 3rd July
Started off with a trip to 'The Bate' where they mostly use After Effects to crate graphic title sequences and music videos. They showed us some of the stuff they had done for the Super Furry Animals, which included a collaboration with Pete Fowler, who is one of my favourite artists and creator of Monsterism. That was really interesting. Their studio was awesome. It was a little attick room, but it was large enough to use as a studio. Really nice environment but the kids screaming outside the window would get on my nerves.
Later on that day we had a talk with Rick Villeneuve about working as a freelance animator and how to use freelance effectively. I found it easy to talk to Rick, knowing him from GCADT and it was cool to see him again. He made the freelance industry sound both excited and dangerous, which it probably is, I'm nervous about the idea of that kind of lifestyle.

Wednesday 4th July
Had a visit from one of my favourite animators today. Joanna Quinn. I was especially looking for ward to this meeting, I just adore the way she works and draws. Les Mills was also there and they showed us some of the commercials they had done. I liked their work ethic of making commercials and using them to fund their bigger films like 'Dreams and Desires'.
Joanna also brought her portfolio with a mixture of frames and cells from all of her projects. The cells of the cats from the American Wiskers adverts were especially beautiful. The lines quality and the scale she works at make each frame look awesome, I'm very envious of her. The way her and Les Mills collaborate on a project was interesting to hear about too.

Thursday 5th July
Had a visit from Mike Collins who works for calon as a storyboard artist and also works on the Dr Who comics. He's a really cool guy. He showed us some of the storyboards from 'Hana's Helpline' and explained how he would rough it out and get Beth (a friend of mine ^__^) to clean it up. He talked abouit the good points and bad points of the storyboarding and comic industry. It sounds like such a cool job but the pressure to get things looking right would be too much for me I think. Mike is basically acting as first director, planning all the camera moves and angles. He also brought in his portfolio of camic book work which was fantastic. My favourite had to be the sketchbook he would take on holiday with him. EWith it he would draw different people he saw, very good practice for character design and anatomy. I love to see the roots of how people work.
Spent the rest of the day preparing for a presentation on Ellen Poon before heading to the cinema to watch Shrek the Third. It was okay. I wasn't expecting the story to be great but the animation did look beautiful. The lighting and backgrounds were lovely, but they should have spent more time on good story. They were definately starting to wear thin on gags. Some bits were funny though. I missed the end, but it didn't really bother me. The fairy tale ending was predictable.

Friday 6th July
Spent most of the day preparing for my presentation on my chosen Special effects artist, Ellen poon. I hate presentations, I'm never any good at them, but this one I didn't mind so much. I had no idea about anything this woman had done, and after gaining all the research I could on her, she turned out to be really interesting. You can see my power point presentation here side show

Monday, 2 July 2007

We had a visit from Bruce Steele who was representing the work created at Glassworks studios. Put into perspective the amount of work that goes into something that only lasts about 20 seconds on screen. Was really interested when he started talking about the Stella Artois adverts, which are some of my favourite adverts ever, especially the one with the ice skating priests. When you can convert short stories like that into a 30 second advert, well, thats pretty talented. I was suprised to find out how many special effects were put in and that people just take for granted.
This was displayed in the "Pilot" Stella Artois advert.

Really really interesting stuff!