Monday, 29 October 2007

Alternate Reality - THG

"What if...?" images are always fun to do, so instead of giving myself a headache and actually do the walk cycle I doodled some anime/manga style goose heads.....maybe in another universe this is what they would have looked like?!
I've put another random one of Glasses twisting his neck about on my Deviant Art page, look in the links at the side for that.

Um, hello.....can you help??

Scenes 13/14 (meeting Noman as he turns around) and 24 (seeing the Photo Booth), the first one will go with the one Bianca has already put up on YouTube and her blog, for 13/14.

Oh, and so you know, the grey b/g is just so you can see where it would be transparent in the composited version.

Friday, 26 October 2007

We've come a long, long way together......

....through the hard times and the good, this is what I have made this week, I have to praise you like I should.

Thursday, 25 October 2007

Walking makes my brain hurt...

......walking cycles that is, I just get confused.

And, I have to do two of them!! Argh!

More on this story as it comes to us....

Wednesday, 24 October 2007

Have you met the French? My God they know how to party!

Wednesday!!!?!? Oh, I could have sworn it was Tuesday, well, that's not fantastic but at least I've been doing more work today.....having mostly completed the first movement of the camera from Glasses to Brows yesterday I moved on to Scene 2 from the storyboard - Glasses taking a photo of a monument.

I worked in an almost professional way - ie: doing things in the right order - keyframes, then test, then tweening....or at least it seemed more regimented/organised than how I did the other one!!

Well, I'm quite pleased with having done 18 frames today, although I would have done more had I not had to get dog mess off my shoe in the morning (grrr!) but it still needs some work - he needs to walk in to the scene with the camera below the shot and then lift it up, then the neck moves.....also, the middle one has to try an get in to the photo by craning his neck and turning his face too! Easy! How much time have we got left?!??

Bianca's back from her whirlwind holiday in Germany, which is good, but I think at the moment it is mainly a matter of getting it all done - not a great deal to discuss with regards to the animation.

Oh, and a prize* to the first person to comment with where the post title comes from......possibly one of the best episodes of this programme (in my opinion!).

Anyway, on with the animation! The Eiffel Tower might be hand-drawn although I love this style (as it's going to be like that in my Final Major film) and found it when I needed something there to fill the scene like it was written/drawn.
It's from this site - - a Florida site full of educational clip art!! Thanks go to the Sunshine State!

*If you think there's actually going to be a prize then you're mister thick thickity thick face from thicktown thickannia. And so is your Dad! (also a slightly altered quote from the same episode).

Tuesday, 23 October 2007


Today I have been busy, maybe even busier than yesterday if that's possible, I woke up earlier and was in our basement studio before everyone else!

I didn't go on the computers immediately (as is my routine) but instead continued to draw more frames of THG and their/his (?) camera.

I did a test (on twos) and it went too fast so I put it through on threes and it was better so I decided to go back and add some more inbetweens where I reckoned they were needed.

I got a bit tired of redrawing the camera and THG so I went and scanned in a drawing I had done as an homage to the 3-Headed Knight from the film "Monty Python and the Holy Grail". I coloured it an uploaded it but I have forgotten to put the three black hands on the middle yellow stripe, so I will do that another time if I remember.

I went back after getting chocolate and drew some more frames, tested it again, had lunch, wandered around town, came back to the basement and continued to do more frames until a crit at 3.30pm with Suzie. I forfeited my turn as we were running late and she was pleased with how my projects were coming on (having seen the Playgrounds presentation), then later I showed her the video below.

Having done enough frames for today, and possibly the sequence I took them over to the scanners and tidied them up in Photoshop (removing the backgrounds!!) before quickly putting them through AfterEffects and making a tiny movie for YouTube.

Halt! Who art thou?

Minstrel: [sings] He is brave Sir Noman, brave Sir Noman, who...

Sir Noman: Shut up! Nobody really, just passing through.

Glasses: What do you want?

Minstrel: [sings] To fight and...

Sir Noman: Shut up! Uh, n-n-nothing, really. J-j-just passing, uhm, just passing through.

Monday, 22 October 2007

Commence animating!!

Hallo! Hoe is het?

Well, after a bit of a slow start this morning I got to college and scanned in a few drawings (the polaroid cameras were just for reference, the one in the animation will be simpler and of my design), wasted some time colouring them in and posting them on here.

Then it got to lunch and I realised I didn't have the storyboard and to avoid actually starting the final animation (argh!! scary!) I went over to the computers again (in the other building) and printed one off so that I could make a note of what scenes I had to do.

Just as I had started Joseph turned up and having done a fair bit of work I went to the SU for a drink and some chocolate, stayed there a bit but eventually left him to draw while I continued on the sequence I had been working on before.

The sequence I chose to start drawing/animating was quite possibly the hardest part I have to do for this animation - scenes 5/6 and soon 11 too - which involved trying to figure out how far a physically unlikely goose could stretch it's wing and still manage to hold an old Polaroid camera. Needless to say I soon found a quick way of re-pencilling the new position on just one body and tracing it in pen straight on to the next frame, thus not wasting paper! Yeah, saving the rainforest!!

Anyway, I tested it and on a loop it would work fine as the video for mind-numbing music with a heavy bass beat in the background, but I've done some more frames and so far I've got Glasses to pass the camera towards Brows, who bends his neck down as the other two move back into a better position.

Hopefully it'll be done by tomorrow afternoon and I can scan them in and put it on YouTube for all to see the gloriously smooth neck movement that I'm pleased with so far!

Goede Nacht!

Behold!! The Photo-Booth of Wonder!!!!

I'll let you colour it Bianca, cause I'm nice like that, and have spent enough time colouring those pointless cameras!!

Polaroid cameras.....

.........are awesome!! So that's why they'll feature in the animation.

Other films with Polaroid cameras - Memento (dir. Christopher Nolan)

Sunday, 21 October 2007

Animatic - (The Director's Cut)

(Harder, better, faster, stronger)

You(tube) like me, you really like me......!

Well, clearly someone's watching this blog since I noticed that the Animatic video I put up on Friday for the Playgrounds talk had this in the Honours section.....Honours for This Video: #10 - Most Linked (Today) - Film & Animation.

So, now I'm working on the next part of it and will put that up shortly so Bianca and I will know the rough timings and can start actually animating our charcters.

Friday, 19 October 2007

Playgrounds........the novelisation.

So, it's been only a week since we paired up and so much has happened, as you may know if you've followed my blog.
Today was the first day of the Playgrounds event in Holland, sort of like the equivalent to our AURORA animation festival in November, and the Encounters project was amongst the opening presentations!!

This meant that we were going to present, along with the St Joost students, a selection of our work so far and detail to the audience what the project was and why it had started. We got a camera and projector set up in our basement studio (in Norwich) and at 1pm we made contact (having tested it earlier on, with mixed results!!).

Tom Simmons gave a talk from our end to the lecture theatre in Holland after Rene had done is bit over Dutch. The rest of the two hours was in English (for our benefit, obviously!) and involved showing the work made by both schools from previous years.

Then we got on to the Encounters project and to start with Bianca and I were the first to talk everyone through our ideas, process and animations.....using the blog on a large screen she showed the storyboards from both of the blogs and occasionally I chipped in with a bit more about my was also the first time people got to see the animatic (as I finished it about half an hour before the talk!!) We went on a bit as we tend to do and eventually stopped letting Martin and his two partners talk about their dark bird story and also the Root Yeti was discovered but without Hannah as she was unwell.

It was a great event and I think that it went really well, hopefully everyone at the other end enjoyed it too.


Animatic Part 1

This is the first part of the story in animatic form.....enjoy!!

Thursday, 18 October 2007

Things are developing.......slowly.

Sleep, don't weep, my sweet love

....also features the mother of all flash attachments and a winter scene.

Vogue, vogue, vogue, vogue....

Come on, vogue
Let your body go with the flow [go with the flow]
You know you can do it

All you need is your own imagination
So use it that's what it's for

That's about it I think........quite relevant, wouldn't you say?!

Photography Storyboard

Follow the numbers cause it's not that well in order but hope you like...

Wednesday, 17 October 2007

Another story (bored....?)

Well here is the changed version having spoken to Suzie about how Noman wasn't interacting enough with THG.

Look at the written version in the comments here -


Tuesday, 16 October 2007

The Story(board) so far.....

So this is the storyboard that I have been working on today, after deciding on a plot last night we will now compare storyboards and scripts so as to work out how Noman and THG will interact and what animation Bianca and I will have to get done.


Storyboarding........the rough version.

It's fairly self-explanatory, although the frames with the arrows around the necks are just an idea as to how they might move when looking for Noman.....a test will be done on this movement today and put on YouTube later too!

For those of you keeping track, the story is pretty much finalised now after a MAMMOTH session on MSN last night, *pat on the back* for both Bianca and I, we should have storyboarded it properly by tonight and will be able to start animating.

Monday, 15 October 2007

Ideas page...

The text on the mini-storyboard is "Noman and the Three-Headed Goose", the second panel has the THG looking around while Noman bounces/waddles/walks/glides? in to the shot.....then one of the heads can notice him (as in the third panel) and be scared/angry/maybe growls (can geese growl?!) at it like the bottom-left part of the page.

Someone thought that the THG can walk in (in complete profile) and appears to have only one head, then the other two heads/necks can poke out from behind him........interact with the title? maybe it says One-Headed Goose first?!?

The expressions are evil/sad/confused/winking......i think the glasses head (this is Jane!) should be the evil/mean/scary one as I think that having no pupils/eyes to see is scarier.

Sunday, 14 October 2007

The T.H.G.

Three-headed geese are rare, rarer than say a unicorn or a yeti....they are different from your average goose in more ways than one. They have three heads and three different personalities within each of these causing arguments to break out regularly.....however, when they get on then they are a force to be recognised.

The strongest of the three is the central one, this is probably due to how the T.H.G evolved from the standard goose on to the two-headed and finally the T.H.G, the middle neck has always been there from the start.
He (since there are very rarely female T.H.Gs apart from occasionally one of the heads adopting a female persona) controls the legs and to a lesser extent, the wings, the additional necks are mostly useless apart from eating.

This T.H.G is rather peculiar in that the split-personalities are very different in that one has taken to wearing a small pair of glasses, another has larger than normal eyebrows.......the middle head is just like a regular goose though.

Oh, and there's the small matter of speech........all T.H.Gs can talk, with varying degrees of success, most like the sound of their voice and it can be tricky to follow one thread of speech but when they want to they can talk together saying one word at a time to create whole sentences using their collective brain.

Any further inquiries about these rare but slightly rubbish creatures should probably not be directed to the London Zoo.

Thursday, 11 October 2007

Geese....maybe a farmer too!

Invisible Geese....

Ok, so I've been trying to upload some scanned in drawings of my work.......but, it's being rubbish, so nothing for the moment. I shall try and put them on deviantart or get some help in doing this, so keep a look out for a three-headed goose!

Monday, 8 October 2007

From Norwich With Love

I am writing here as part of the "Encounters" project set up between NSAD (Norwich, UK) and St Joost Art Academy (Holland). We will be working on a collaborative animation involving two of our characters.

My name is Chris, I'm 21 and starting my third and final year of my animation degree this year.
I don't think I have a particular style, even though people say I do, as I enjoy working in different types of animation.
I can use After Effects quite well, but don't know how to use Maya, I like cut-out animation (Monty-Python-style), hand-drawn and stop-motion too, so I'm versatile.......or maybe just indecisive!

(Outside of animating I climb, walk, cycle, ski, sail, snowboard, kayak, white-water raft and did a tandem skydive last summer. I also enjoy going to the cinema to see all sorts of films [modern/foreign/old] and playing on my Playstation2.)

So there you go.....a little about me and my current project. I shall endeavour to add more pictures and written updates as soon as I can.