Monday, 27 August 2012

Encounters Short Film and Animation Festival

'To The Heart of The Matter' is going to be screened at Encounters this year!

Encounters Short Film Festival - Bristol, United Kingdom 

It is being shown in 'The Trials of Life' group of animations on Wednesday 19th at 12:00 and Thursday 20th at 18:30 in the Arnolfini Auditorium Bristol. (Tickets cost £6.50/£5.00 Concessions)

I am very exited about going to the festival, watching lots of short films and meeting loads of interesting people.

Maybe I will see you there!

Tuesday, 7 August 2012

New Website!

I now have a new website.

You can watch my showreel and film trailer, look at my portfolio and CV and contact me if you want!


Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Film Trailer

Hello all! I have made a quick short trailer for my film. I can't make it public online yet as I am trying to enter it into festivals.



Monday, 21 May 2012

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Radical Rig Removal

After finishing my shoot. I had loads of ugly rigs holding up various puppets and props and so I used After Effects and Photoshop to take them out.

Before brining in my animation to tale out the rig I exported a single frame of my animation without the rig. I then brought both my animation and picture into After Effects with the picture on top and animation below.

At the point in the animation where the rig is seen I made a mask on the picture layer around the rig. This meant that rig is covered by the section of the rig I masked off. I then needed to do this for each frame that the rig is seen.

Then when I export the animation the rig is no longer seen.

I also used After Effects to add shakes and glows to my animation. These helped to tell the story and add special effects to enhance my Stop-Motion animation.

Friday, 11 May 2012

More Machine and Set Photos

Here are some more Machine and Set photos before I rip the set down for good...

Here is a close up of the Rivets and Rust finish I put on the Machine. The rust toned in well with the orange and yellow set and the turquoise contrasted nicely.

Here is the chair in situ and you can see the world and star maps on the walls. I feel like I should have showed them more in the film but I hope that even just having them in the background gives the set more history.

Here you can see the fairy lights I used to light up the set behind The Machine. They were really useful as I was able to move them around depending on the shot.

Here you can see the red and yellow filters I used on the lights to give the cave set an other worldly feel. The effect worked really well. Coloured filters really help to set the mood and tone of the lighting.

The Beginning of The End

This was my last week filming. Here are just a few photos that sum up the week...

To shoot some close ups of the machine I moved the machine forward which allowed me to re-shot some of the shots that looked far away.

Just as I was shooting the last shot with The Man, his wrist broke! I got the shot but it felt like perfect trimming. If it had broken sooner I did have a spare set but they were not as nice as this pair. 

My puppet rests after a long six weeks shooting.

I noticed that The Mechanic's ear had cracked as I was filming his last shots, but thankfully this was not noticeable on camera.

Once I finished I tidied up to keep all my tools together. Now I just have to edit the film and use After Effects to take out rigs and add some special effects.

Saturday, 5 May 2012

More Shooting Fun On Set

I have continued shooting more shots in the cave set. Here are some pictures from my time in the booth...

It was brilliant being able to remove sections of the cave walls when I needed to shoot different angles.

The fairy lights came in handy to brighten up some shots. I had to make sure they were not in shot and I hope that in the context of the film the viewer will not notice the difference in light from shot to shot.

Here is how I shot the point of view shot of The Mechanic looking into the 'Spare Coins' box.

To shoot the shot of The Man getting up I rigged up another LED light to simulate the blue light from the well behind him. It worked very well.

I also used it for the reaction shots of The Mechanic when The Man is cowering on the ground. The blue light created nice detail in the shots.

I turned the main lights off to see what the blue light looked like on its own. Looks quite spooky.

Here is The Man running from The Mechanic with The Ring in hand. The Man is a great character to get great silhouettes with his thin, tall body.

I find it amusing the faces the the puppets end up making when you don't need to see their faces on shot.

Here is The Mechanic 'in rehearsals' under the animation desk. The Mechanic is a fun character to animate. As he does no have any visible legs you can concentrate on the action in the upper half of his body.

Will the world turn again....?

Saturday, 28 April 2012

The Machine in The Cave

Here are some photos of the machine in the cave...

I put two sets of fairy lights behind the machine to give the cave more light. I also put one set half inside the machine so that I could use one of the bulbs to light the machine lights. I had to move the bulb from colour to colour when needed.

I put some more yellow sprayed wire wool around the base of The Machine to tie it into the cave and to hide some of the cracks that were leaking light.

The front panel of the machine tones in brilliantly with the orange or the cave...

...and the parts to the machine are nice and atmospheric sitting at the top in the darkness of the roof of the cave.

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Painting and Finishing The Machine

I wan't the machine to have an old industrial feel to it. I want it to look old, and odd yet understandable. To do this I have chosen a turquoise colour for the paint job and I will make it look corroded with rust.

I first painted the parts of the inside of the machine that the camera might pick up to unify the inside and made it look like it is all part of the same object.

I then gave the whole of the outside a prime coat in grey again to unify all the different parts and textures. This means that on especially the front panel there will be less difference between the different levels of the built and it will unify the Millput and the foam board.

I then masked off the front panel as I want it to be a different colour from the rest of the body. I tested putting a copper/rust colour where I wanted them to be but I could not control the turquoise spray paint for this to work. However it gave me a good idea of how the final paint finish might look.

I put three coats of the final colour on the machine, sanding it down between each coat. This gave me quite a smooth finish. 

I painted the front a copper colour.

I then painted the silver highlights of the front panel and painted the rusted highlights on the body of the machine. Thankfully I was able to use the imperfections already created by my half rushed effort to make the  machine for the rusted parts

On the side of the machine I stuck on the instruction panel and scuffed it up to make it look old and worn.

I then stuck in and on the remaining details on the front panel and again dry brushed it to make it all look as old as time itself!

To make the outside parts animatable finalised my Lego Technic mechanism and used hot glue to keep it all together.

I then stuck it inside and used more hot glue to keep it all in place.

Here is a video of me testing the mechanism. It is a bit clunky but when I animate it, it should be a bit smoother.

At this point I thought I was finished but felt it needed a little something else to give it that extra edge and machine feel...


I made some hemispheres from Milliput...

...and then painted them metallic grey.

I stuck them onto the machine with contact adhesive and then dry brushed them to tie them in with the rest of the machine.

I put some fairy lights inside the machine and pushed one into the orange light to see how it looked.

 I put one of the cave walls behind the machine to check that it tied in ok with the orange of the cave walls. I am quite pleased with how they tone in together. Now I have one more prop to make and I will be ready to start shooting again.