Sunday, 29 May 2011

Business Cards

Well I guess this is the first blog post of my new 'out of Uni' life. And boy does it feel weird. I haven't quite comprehended this stage even though it has been confirmed with the final presentation last week; this went rather well considering I was the last student of the day and spent 20 minutes waiting in the corridor freaking out!

So yes, life goes on... and I have got several priorities that I need to address. This means I do have to finally tidy up my show reel and CV. It also gave me the opportunity to go through other smaller tasks I kept forgetting to finish, such as business cards. I had feedback from last semester about how business cards should be kept plain and simple... counting mainly on the personal touch on introduction more than the quality of a piece of card.

I still wanted to have a nice picture on my one however:

This is the back of the business card. You can't see the outline very
well but it is literally is my logo against the white card. Plain and simple

So these designs have now been sent off to Vista Print for printing and should be delivered to me within the next two weeks. This should be just in time for the Degree Show, which means anyone can get involved with all the madness. Vistaprint is a good website to start off with... the way it roped me in was very smooth but I would definately consider finding another website. It boasts an offer (for newly signed members) of 250 business cards from £5. Really do take note of the 'from' because it fails to tell you of the couple of extra pounds for uploading your own images (front and back) the added cost of actually printing the cards and then ofcourse post and packaging.

The final cost for my '250 for £5' ended up being just over £17. Well like I said, its a start.

One final thing for this post: I have finished a watercolour painting I did and edited it slightly in photoshop by adding text and a bit of a background to create the Official Movie Poster for The Money Tree animation.

May the money be with you!

Monday, 23 May 2011

The Money Tree Production

Well we are now finished. The Money Tree production has finally come to a close and the four of us can now sit back and watch it all upload online. It has been a hectic few weeks to put the animation together, and considering the final day of animating was saturday 21st May (deadline being 24th!!) it was rather a close call.

I had been editing throughout the weeks anyway, so the last few days when we all viewed the rough cut were not as pressing as we once thought. I had shown May what I had edited together, after exporting all the files from Stop Motion Pro 7, and we all agreed that the layout (which was still very close to the original animatic) was just what we wanted.

I used my own Magix Movie Edit Pro software to edit the animation together as all the exported files were saved as WMV files. It still exported the final film in the format we wanted and kept the quality also.

Rig removal was a new technique we used in this animation. I went through each individual frame (on a couple of sequences) and painted out any mistakes that were made, for example, any branches that had been moved whilst animating.
The final edit was completed last night with the addition of a couple of last minute sound effects. Alex and myself were in charge of the foley sound effects and matched them up to the series of actions or movements throughout the film. We also had the idea of using a range of muffled expressions as oppose to actual dialogue - although this was decided at the very start of the project where we knew there would be no lip synch. So we went ahead and recorded badger growls and grunts, footsteps on leaves, dog panting and Barneys many emotions (amongst loads of others).

Jon Colenso, Alex Young and myself animating the final scene

The final animation can be viewed on Vimeo on the following link. The Money Tree

Saturday, 14 May 2011

The Fellowship of the Studio

It has been far too long since my last post. And I also realised how I have barely mentioned the insanity of my amazing dreams. They have mostly been inspired by the various horror films I have recently been watching such as Channel 5's The Dentist and new release Insidious. I am pretty terrible with horror films due to my tendancy to jump at any moment, even if it was a knock on the door or a slightly louder 'hello'.

This is besides the point ofcourse... because I must talk about the animating I have been doing these past few weeks. And the reason for lack of blogging is because of this: it's been 9-5 most weeks. I am not a primary animator, however, but still have been doing alot of test animations with Alex Young, whilst Jon and May get on with the main animation with the Fox and Barney.

The extract below is part of the 'bonus features' we shall include alongside the final Money Tree film. This partilcular video is more of an appreciation film for the props, accompanied by Meringue Radio's hit show The Archers.

So as this video should keep you entertained for now... the four of us must press through this final week and really nail this project. We have worked really well together and it will be ace if we finish strong and on a real high.