Sunday, 2 October 2011

My sting for the Flip Festival


This project has led me to discover how much I can accomplish when time is restricted. I managed to tackle aspects of production that I used to avoid or chuck to someone else and I also learnt a little about the way I think. Such as my tendancy to over embellish or the need to cram too many ideas into one thing.

As a treat I will be getting myself a new board Game  "Arkham Horror" :)

Heres the site for more info

Its an in depth RPG board game set it the 1920's stories of HP Lovecraft. I can't wait :D

My next project will involve the creation of a character from one  of my favourite books as a child, "The Doomspell". So keep your eyes peeled for updates, I'm not giving myself a deadline for this so its going to be a labour of love for my spare time.

Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Goldfish stand

Photoshop work from today, had the stark realisation that I can never do as much as I hope to do when I'm still learning all the ins and outs of a programme. Never the less this is the goldfish cart that is going to be in my sting, still incomplete as you can tell from the lack of goldfish in the bags and the shadows need some work.

I also recently discovered these stands no longer exist and if they do they can't give away goldfish as prizes, for the might of the RSPCA descended and said "no this is too cruel to the goldfish, we demand you stop and give away plushies instead". Well thats how it went in my head and I'm pretty sure the RSPCA weren't wearing capes.

So indulge your peepers and constructive critique is welcomed.

Panda girl update

 UV mapping

Close up

Meet Panda girl in 3d she's coming along quite well, though I have only a week left to finish and upload my sting though I'm confident I can get things moving quickly and create something new, fresh and most importantly something I can be proud off the final result.

Thursday, 15 September 2011

Girl with a Panda Hat

 (rough version)

This is my  little girl in a panda hat (with a TV for a head), this was a 2 afternoon sketch about 10 hours.

She will have emoticon faces (still to be finalised) and her best friend will be a cross eyed goldfish. I designed her for a sting for the flip festival for the end of this month.

Hope you enjoy x

Thursday, 8 September 2011

Well this embarrassing

It has been months upon months since my last post and to be completely honest I don't have any excuse which sounds good in my head so I won't bore you with details. It mainly came down to two points:

1) It became too hectic near the end of my last project to post updates.
2) Once the project ended I became quite dis-enchanted with my work.

But now I'm back and this blog will quite likely be changing soon, possibly even moving to a new name so keep those peepers peeled.

First off here's my final film "The Full English"

Near the end we realised we couldn't use two of the three sets we had laboured over and had to do what was possible in the time we had left, though it wasn't completed to the level we intended I'm extremely proud of what we achieved and hopefully in the near future I'll revisit Eggy's strip-tease and re-do it with some class.

I also did a small VFX scene for a friend:

Its my second piece of compositing work and I'm planning on focusing more of my animations around it.

More recently I'm creating a sting for the Flip Animation festival, this will involve a girl in a panda hat and a cross eyed goldfish :D and fun times will be had by all.

Wednesday, 16 March 2011

quick update on the Full English

Holly one of our second years finished one of the Frankfurt brothers, the cheeky owners of the club. Here's the little paint job I did on him. its acrylic and clay varnish to give it a cooked sausage sheen with little grill lines down his body.

Tests: the first two are paint, one with glue mixed in one without. The 3rd is clingfilm and the 4th is the clay varnish. Just to see how different materials reacted to the leather.

Little mod-rock fedora's to act as a base (mini block) to model light weight mini hats. Will post the results *crosses fingers* which will hopefully produce good quality stop motion hats.

Here's my recent work for Barry Purves "Young persons guide to the orchestra". These will be part of a mobile hanging over a crib which is the introduction shot for our animation, it will be the only live action bit so it has to look pretty and fit in with the rest of the cut out animation.

This last one will be one of the toys in the animation, we're showing the progression of childhood through a childs toys, all being followed by a butterfly from the mobile.

Hope you enjoyed x
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Wednesday, 9 March 2011

Auditions, tips, tricks and the little things

Hello people of blog world

I haven't posted for some time and I'm scolding myself internally for it, I guess I always dismiss updating because I don't think I have enough to talk about, circling back to the feeling that I'm not doing enough which in turn trails of to a very dark and uncomfortable place with no sunshine and only the cold light of a computer screen illuminating my world O_O

too dark? Yes, I think so, so back out and bouncing and happy into the light. Heres a little video to cheer you up from the creator of "pink fluffy unicorns dancing on rainbows".

and just in case here's the Unicorn one as well..........

(Happiness Encapsulated)

Ok back in the room and back to my update. This week and the week before it has been the treasure hunt for voice actors, we started by putting up posters around the University and in the Drama societys base room. This resulted in absolutely nothing interest wise, dissappointing and as much of a set back as this was ploughing through I contacted two Amateur Dramatic societies Stafford & District Operatic Society and The Stafford Players. Expecting to get a few replies to my amazement we had 16 inquiries, so suddenly we were back on track and had plenty of interest for our two main voices.

Now this week is auditions one date on Thursday the 10th March from 5 - 8 p.m and on Sunday the 13th March from 1- 6 p.m, we chose two dates to give our actors the most flexibility, but one thing you learn from the first time you host an audition is that interest does not always translate to commitment. Circumstances change, people become other wise engaged and others just lose interest, its one hell of a learning curve though you could say every first experience is.

Hopefully the next post will include details of our two voice actors in all their auditory glory.

Apart from voice actor hunting we have been on the hunt for the music for our animated Extravaganza "The Full English" and as of today we now have the music for when our Toastie soldier enters the club and the music for our sultry Eggy strip tease. I could not be more happy as its an amazing feeling to see things progressing and soon we will update our animatic and post it to vimeo and this blog.

For those would be film makers of the animated persuasion and otherwise here are my tips for finding your voice actors and obtaining your music;

Searching for Voices

  • Advertise yourself, don't always go to your friends because its easy and they won't say no, actors are usually experienced in many different roles and can take direction a lot easier than someone just doing you a favour.
  • Don't give up at the first hurdle, try a different angle, look else where for inspiration and people
  • If you cannot pay people make this clear from the offset, instead offer credit on your film, an interesting experience and links from your website to theirs. People will work for free if they're building their portfolio.
  • Ask for background information and though you can do pre auditions over the phone always make the deciding audition in person. You'll gain a lot more from a face to face meeting and you can tell a lot more about someones character.
  • Don't host auditions at your own residence. Book out a room, you will seem more professional and won't have to worry about house mates wandering through.
  • Send your script before the audition so they can get a feel for the characters.
  • Give and recieve phone numbers, there will always be a point where you need to contact someone quickly and email is not the easiest option.
  • Never worry if you don't feel professional enough, write down points you want to raise before a phone call and be confident in your mannerisms. Everyone feels insecure at some point so don't worry if your nervous before an Audition, more than likely your actor will be as well.
Music for your film

  • You will want royalty free music for your production, if your unsure on the difference between royalty and royalty free go here Royalty free music in depth 
  • If you want to enter your film into festivals you can get in trouble if your music is not legally yours to use. There are several good sites for music that I use the main two are and they charge far less than many sites.
  • Always read the terms and conditions of your license so there are no unexpected surprises after your purchase
  • You can also contact composers directly for use of their music, sometimes they will be willing to let you use their tracks for free if you explain you are a student and won't use it for financial gain.
  • Be persistant but not pushy. The worst they can say to you is no, sometimes explaining things further and sending some examples of your work can sway someones opinion.

 Heres some visual updates:

Eggy in her robe

A simple Fedora
The start of a grand piano
The beautiful storyboard style of miss Chloe Howley
and finally my concept art of our art deco bar for set design

By the way our sets are really starting to progress the main set is being undertaken by Zeke Ares one of our very capable second years and as of today is being assited by our newest aid James Davenhill. Whilst our exterior set is being constructed by the talented miss Emma Cosgrove. So onwards and upwards my comrades, the next part will involve many compositing tests so I can practice intergrating stop motion and CGI elements, I know what your thinking pure craziness for a newbie compositor like myself but hey what can I say I'm a risk taker.

On my final note all I have left to say is make time for the little things. Even when your drowning in an insurmountable amount of work, taking time for the little things will keep you sane. Though work may seem the most important thing sometimes the relationships you've built with friends and family hold just as much weight as those looming deadlines.


Monday, 21 February 2011

Illness, lemsip and Kawaii

Hello blog world,

as you can probably deduce from the title of this blog I am ill and I'm writing this blog really just to feel like I'm doing something with my day apart from getting through hundreds of Kleenex and watching crap telly on 4od almost obsessively.

So it started as a normal hangover, you laze around all day in your jim jams feeling a little bit bleh but usually around early afternoon, several cups of tea later you feel back to normal and a little bit guilty about wasting the morning. But it didn't go like that and it was on the journey home down the pitch black M6 I began to wonder why I was feeling so tired and still so bleh.

This morning I still felt bad and I finally have to accept I'd contracted the dreaded lurgy.

(O_O next door are singing....this is quite strange)

The trouble with illness is its so counter productive! I can't do any work, every time I try my brain short circuits and goes "no sorry, can't compute". The day has involved two episodes of "Misfits", two "Beauty and the beast: the ugly face of prejudice", "Love, virtually" a documentary about online dating and "Newlyweds: the one year itch". I'm a self proclaimed advocate of crap telly, especially documentaries that show you quite personal insights into situations and peoples lives. Maybe thats why I watch so much Jeremy Kyle.

I've also been trawling the kawaii blogs for cute things such as these new momiji book club dolls

which I love for their cute little glasses, I want Alex the red head who I think looks like me :D

Here are some kawaii blogs for you other time wasters

(pics of japanese style)

This is a website that specialises in apps and products for teaching hiragana (a form of japanese writing)

Though I haven't got much done today illness does give you a lot of reflection time, so I'm thinking of getting a small portfolio together in time for Stuttgart. Project wise we're going to start building sets this week and I'm creating a stop motion version of Eggy for light tests on set while modelling 3d eggy and her three outfits.

So I'm going to go back to forcing myself to get better, as I have a Rob Zombie concert tomorrow night and I will be better for it and enjoy every single moment, because the tickets cost me so much to not enjoy it because of illness would be sacrilege.

Bye Bye people of Bloggington

Wednesday, 9 February 2011

Posters for voices and our new collaborative logo

We're going to be putting up the posters around the Drama course in the next few days in the hope of getting our two lead voices and a multitude of background voices. I'm thinking of having a day of voice recording and foley, possibly two to get it all done and out the way then when it comes to sound editing it will be mostly done and hopefully will only have to go back to record more specific sound bites.

The logo is the collaboration of mine and my co-directors business names. 

Little Paper Boat + Teacups and joy = Paper Boat in a Teacup

Will start on the modelling tomorrow so will hopefully have some Egg based seduction in the next post. 

Wednesday, 2 February 2011

Essex rock band sketches & happy sunflowers

Last weekend me and my boyfriend Rafe went down to Essex for our friend Phil and his ex-house mate Chris's joint birthday. It was great to get to see Phil and Liz again, the problem when friends are dotted all over the country is how little you get to see each other because everyone works and most free time ends up clashing. So the Essex house parties are usually those few pin-pointed opportunities during the year where everyone is back together and gets to have a good time with silly costumes and alcohol a-flowing.
I'm a Sunflower from plants and zombies and Rafe is a bio-mech warrior from a game thats name escapes me. Both our costumes were a bit quickly made, last year of uni doesn't leave much time for art attack moments, so there was a lot of quick fabric paint and tin foil.

Here's a more forward shot so you can see my sun flower. I spent most of the night with wine dancing in the corner like a little sunflower. If you haven't played Plants Vs Zombies I fully recommend you do, I bought it on Steam for £4 and it is the most over played game in my collection.

During a rock band session my camera died so I decided to sketch a few people to remember the mass musical session.

Phil - manic on the drums to the left.

Tom - tentative with the keyboard on the right

Grum to the left on the bass or possibly the guitar with leanne to his right.

The lovely Liz to the right with a pair of ears from someones costume

Finally (my lovely) Rafe while he was singing to Deftones.

Tuesday, 25 January 2011

Presentations and snippets of work

Just got back from presenting the work in progress to the 2nd years, it was nerve wracking yet exhilarating, I love our idea for 'The Full English' its all planned out and I think our idea is unique enough that it will be remembered at the festivals. I'm feeling really positive about this now and we already have 4 assistant animators  : )

Here are two of them, our stop motion girls. So feeling a good vibe from their work and I think we can make a really beautiful intricate set with these guys.

There is also one more girl who has shown interest and with all three of them I think things will flow a lot easier on the production side. I love the amount of small details that make up stop motion sets, like the texture of the bricks or the small painting hanging on the wall.

Here is where my designs are so far, I think I need to pull a few more long drawing days. Just me, a large coffee, my wacom and series 8 of project runway playing in the backgrounds.

My Egg and she lives and shimmies.

First version of the club logo, I'm probably going to work more detail around the edges and the front doors. I love the the metal work on the door it's my version of some original art deco doors from a cafe in Ethiopia. The top of the doors will have a stained glass motif incorporating cutlery. 

A page from my sketchbook full of random little art deco sketches, parts of architecture and accessories that inspire. Note to self : scan, collage, sketch.

These are two of the stronger frames from the start of the storyboard, where the Toasty soldier goes backstage to try to talk to Eggie. Leaving her a mysterious envelope shouting "I know who you truly are!"

On a more personal tone I've been getting loads of books out of the library on fashion, textiles and garment construction. It's always been an interest of mine but not a strong enough one to make it a career. Maybe it will be my little side project that keeps me sane when I get sick of staring at a computer screen.

I've also been making my first ever bag as a place to store my crafty things, it has a beautiful print on it called "Afternoon Tea". Hopefully I will complete it soon and post up pictures.



Friday, 7 January 2011

Material, storyboards and long caffeinated talks

Hello Blog world,

so far my new year has been  pleashant mix of active and slothful. For example today I have spent in my pyjama's but I've also been sitting infront of the computer with my lovely boyfriend getting my Mom's face painting website done. Not completed yet but getting closer to completion, Rafe scripts and programmes, I design and push things around the screen till it looks pretty.

Here it is so far *drum roll please* ......... Powwow Face Painting


I think Rafe is watching a weird cult/ telecommunications advert dvd O_O ..... beware they are every where ..... sounds like a pyramid scheme...... I don't trust his happy expression..... its Telecom plus : S

*update* its either a pyramid scheme/ scam or the job of a telecommunicator 20 minutes of people saying how they made money and not saying how, you have to contact the person who gave you the dvd to get any info"


Back to the point I've been buting fabric to create my own little craft bag (a bag to fill with wool, felt, half complete projects and spools of thread) I bought a great pattern called afternoon tea which is dotted with cups, teapots and sugar lumps. I'm going to buy the rest of the fabric back in stoke as there are no fabric shops left in wolverhampton.

I also had a good catch up with Liz from college, it was really great we sat sipping caramel coffee and updating each other on what had happened in our lives. Now we're both on our final year social intereaction just got that little bit harder but we're gonna try and have another catch up before graduation or shortly after.When we went shopping it was just like old times, getting each others opinion in the changing room moaning about ridiculous prices on the tiniest piece of sparkle. Nice to know that the good friends you can just hang out like no time has passed.

On the shopping front I have purchased many pretty things but my most recent favourite is a purse with enough pockets to hide the time space continuim in (oh yea someones been over dosing on doctor who) it also appeals to my bohemian side, the side that wants to dress like a hippy and eat tofu, until I remember I like meat : )

However on the work front there have been many scribbles and here's the first few frames of the storyboard for the amazing animation I will be collaborating with the awesome Emma Bulpitt about the forbidden love of a toastie soldier and his beloved egg. Set in a burlesque theatre ofcourse :D


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