Friday, 21 February 2014

Episode I

(play me)

I am incredibly sorry for such a late post. I have neglected you once again, so for those who read this and live relatively near Birmingham; find me, and I will buy you a chocolate bar.

Although, these longer periods in between posts might be considered a good thing because it means I'm actually working.


Electric Elkboy was falling. He was plunging towards the ground at such a speed that it was nigh impossible for the reader to foresee a happy ending. It was a struggle to breath and yet, the Elkboy felt comfortably terrified. Realising that these feelings clearly ought to cancel each other out, the Elkboy simply began to plummet without emotion. This only aroused confusion and then curiosity. But by the time he realised these things he was another two thousand feet closer to his untimely death.

The Elkboy begrudged his faithful droid Chester as those impending words of kite flying advice fermented in the back of his mind. Temporarily forgetting his peril, he concentrated all his thoughts into an impressive frown regardless of his lack of audience. Clouds rushed by and the mountain peaks rose fast like the protruding spikes in the palace dungeon from Temple of Doom but, alas, with no Willy to save him this time.

His kite was broken. His luck running out. The question was had he packed the emergency inflatable banana-boat? Because as his great Uncle Waldorf used to say... 'I'm fed up with these bloody elk, but I always make sure I have a banana to go'.

2014 has already given me one heck of a project to work on and the feedback that our team received upon delivery was delightful. Myself, Drew and Yossel drove down to Clapham Road Studios in London to drop off the sets, which we had built and dressed up here in Birmingham, ready for the animators to do their thing. So now we play the waiting game.

The animation workshop that I've been running has taken an exciting new turn, as they're actually beginning to animate! Unfortunately I've recently bailed on them due to a studio opportunity up in Manchester (I shall divulge in a few paragraphs time) so I am willing to accept the grief from my class upon my return. They're all on their half term holiday at the moment, so I am hoping they might forget my absence and do their bloody homework.

I made a Morph for the students to use in their animation principles tests. He was a very simple wire armature covered in red plasticine and took only a couple of hours to finish. I even tweeted a picture and spurred on the club by getting Peter Lord on the scene. Of course, the students knew him as that guy who makes Wallace and Gromit (which isn't entirely true) but I was impressed that they recognised his face. I actually have a funny story to tell which involves a combination of my naïve and oblivious mind, a cocktail party at the Encounters Animation Festival and Mr Lord himself. But I shan't tell it. I'm too embarrassed. Unless somebody comments on this blog asking me specifically to embarrass myself!

So Mr Lord tweeted back with some sound advice. I'm very
star-struck right now!

I am back in Manchester working at the Factory TM Studios but not to work on the their current CBBC children's series Strange Hill High. I was actually rather oblivious (as usual) upon my return, because I perched on the outskirts of the Monday morning meeting and people were asking me what on earth are you doing here? So I stood around like a right mook until I was guided into Barbara's office where I was prepped for an upcoming reboot of a classic stop motion series. I whooped with joy! (on the inside, of course... you know, staying professional and all).

So... I'm working on the Clangers! I cannot reveal much so I guess you'll have to wait until the series is released. Stay tuned. 

This week I have been mostly finding out that by adding bicarbonate soda powder to super glue (after applying to joint) it dries instantly.

One of the major events of 2014 will be my trip to South America. Me and Lucy are jetting off in June for over two months to conquer another continent on the list. And what a list we have! Our adventure begins with a cheeky six days in Miama (it was practically on route, so a trip to Universal Studios couldn't go a miss). Then we fly to Columbia and have approximately two months to explore and journey the hundreds of beautiful miles south to Buenos Aires in Argentina.
We have no initial plan but to somehow fit salsa dancing, horse riding and thong wearing into every country we visit. Yes, you read that latter one correctly. Keep an eye out for South American blogging because me and Lucy will be reminding you as often as we possibly can that we'll be adventuring in the sun. You may read in envy.

So I'm unabashedly a comic book fan. I have stacks of old Beano's, Dandy's, Star Wars, DC, Scott Pilgrim and some random anime series. But I was never really into Marvel when I was younger, because I was too transfixed with the epic, and rather dark, Batman animated series. I have managed to watch the 90's X-men and loved it. I'm really intrigued by the back stories of all these characters blah blah. Sorry I was getting bored of writing just then. The moment had evaporated. I'm currently a little under the weather and I'm trying to ease the cogs of my aching mind. So I'm becoming grumpier the more I have to concentrate and yet writing in the present tense seems to be just fine. I'm supping a hot beverage and eating cheesecake RIGHT NOW. But this trailer made me freak out and you'd understand the reason why I wanted to play the track at the start of this blog.
I know nothing of the Guardians of the Galaxy but I think this trailer reassures us that it doesn't bloody matter. Enjoy.

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