Monday, 30 November 2009

MONSTER AT CINECITY FILM FESTIVAL


















My Straight 8 film MONSTER has been selected for a screening at the CineCity film festival in Brighton. Taking place on the 5th of Decmber at the Sallis Benney theatre it promises to be a lot of fun, the Straight 8 screenings always are.




















MONSTER is about a small village holding an emergency meeting to discuss the terrible events that have befallen them as they are one by one picked off by a terrible creature that has decided to make them his midnight feast... Every night.

The version you will see on the night is the un-edited original entry to the competition first screened at the Curzon Mayfair cinema during the Soho Rushes Film Festival earlier in the year.

Tickets are available from the Duke of York box office on 0871 704 2056.

Thursday, 12 November 2009

CHAOS LABORATORIES EPISODE 1 ONLINE NOW

The first episode of the new Modern Toss / BBC comedy series is now online, have a look below:



The series was great to work on and was the last project I worked on whilst at LSM. I was really proud of the work myself and the rest of the team managed to produce for it and I hope it does well, it's a great genre bending program mixing elements of sci-fi, comedy, drama and horror, so promises to be like nothing else you've ever seen!

Wednesday, 4 November 2009

CHAOS LABORATORIES

Coming soon to BBC Online, Chaos Laboratory a brand new series from Modern Toss starring Paul Kaye and Simon Day. I worked as Supervising animator on the project along side creators Modern Toss and director Ben Wheatley, who along with editor Rob Hill recently acheived great success with their feature film Down Terrace.

Video footage of these red creatures has been spreading over the internet for the last week or so now but it won't be long before you can watch the full thing.

Here's a trailer for it with music by DJ Dave Spoon:



As well as working as an animator on the series with the guys at LSM I was also let loose with a video camera and did some of the filming for the second unit.

I'll post more about my work on the project once it goes live, I wouldn't want to spoil it!

Wednesday, 28 October 2009

NEW Home-Clubber Book

Modern Toss have released a brand new book featuring all the best Home-Clubbers including this one here:



















The book is out now and available for you to buy here.

Home-Clubber appears every week in the Guardian Guide and has done since 2004, so that's well over 200 cartoon strips to chose from when putting the book together so they quality will be high, I'm sure!

One of my first jobs was to animate the Home-Clubbers for use as mobile downloads, I did over 60 of them. It was great fun trying to squeeze as much animation as I could from a single drawing, I really learned my craft doing so many of these, the trick was to communicate the original joke but to also add something to make it worth while paying for.

To celebrate the release of the book I have posted one of the episodes onto YouTube, you can view it below.



Keep a look out for it in all good book shops. Not the bad ones, they won't have it.

Train Attack!

Take a look at this video posted on YouTube the other day, what do you think it could be?



The creature definitely has a beak of some sort and a large round body/head. I commuted from Redhill to Brighton for two years and I've never seen anything like it. I have a feeling there's more where that one came from...

Wednesday, 7 October 2009

MONSTER Online




















The Director's Cut of my 2009 Straight 8 film "Monster" is now online! Originally shown at the Soho Rushes Short Film Festival earlier in the year, this version includes the extended ending featuring illustrations by Melissa Bramley. One of which can be seen below.




















This is the first time it has been made available to view online. Just in time for Halloween!

Check it out:

Thursday, 16 July 2009

MOFILM: Philips - We Heart Light















My entry to the MOFILM User Generated Content competition is now online!

The competition was run in conjunction with 12 brands including Visa, HP and Vodafone amongst others. Each brand set a brief based on their core values and hundreds of people from all over the world entered, all hoping to bag the top prize... a day on set with director Spike Lee.

I chose to create a piece for the brand Philips, mostly because I liked the brief which was to 'get people to think about light in a new way and to create emotion through light.' I tricky one, but I thought there was a lot of potential to work with light in some interesting ways.





























I came up with the idea of two characters made out of light interacting with each other in different ways trying to express themselves. The light that formed the characters was to be refracted from two prisms set up in some sort of magical light experiment taking place at night.

Interesting facts:

Filming the video part of the piece actually took place during the daytime and was converted to night using computer trickery. Also , the two prisms I baught failed to refract any rainbow coloured light what-so-ever so all the rainbows were animated along with the two characters.














Unfortunatley the entry did not win. Not to worry though, I'm really happy with the finished piece and you can check it out below:




A few days later I get an email from the folks at MOFILM telling me that because I was one of the first 30 people to enter in the Philips category I am entitled to a prize and that they would be sending it to me in the post in the next few days...

So here it is!


















MOFILM Prize winner after all! Some lovely Philips white candle lights. Only problem is they've got a european mains plug and I live slap bang in the UK. Oh well.

Thursday, 18 June 2009

MONSTER screening at Rushes Soho Shorts Festival!

















My 2009 Straight 8 film "Monster" is going to be screened as part of the Rushes Soho Shorts festival in London at the end of July.

This is fantastic news and I'm very excited about sitting in a cinema with loads of people and seeing it up on the big screen. It was filmed on Kodak Super 8 negative stock so it should look awesome, of course I had lots of help from some very talented people including Bob who was camera operator, Nick Dale who did my lighting and Melissa Bramley who did some wonderful illustrations that feature in a book within the film.

I'm going to build a website for the film so stay tuned for that, it will have a full cast and crew list as well as a gallery and eventually the film itself.

















The film was a large step up in terms of the ambition behind it compared to last year. With a cast of 50 and over 100 shots (the film is only 3 minutes and 20 seconds long!) there was a lot to get done. It's about a small village that finds it's self at the mercy of a monster with a taste for humans that awakes every night and goes in search of food! The whole thing was filmed in one day and everyone got to bed on time... Well, almost.

I have to say a massive thankyou to actors Teresa Garratty and Stephen Rockell who both feature in the pictured above, Mike Chowney and family and Thomas Matuszewski who played the Monster. You were all fantastic.

















An extra special thankyou to Tim and Amelia Lowry (Tim is featured above) who played their roles as terrified children brilliantly and to everyone else who helped me out including all my friends and family. As well as being a serious business (to me anyway) it was a great day and you all helped make it a lot of fun.

As soon as I get more info on the dates of the screening I'll post them here.

Wednesday, 27 May 2009

Terminator Salvation Viral - Skynet & You














My Terminator Salvation animation used by Warner Bros as part of the film's viral campaign has passed the benchmark of 5000 views on You Tube!

What started as a fan video was quickly snapped up and integrated into the plot of the official marketing campaign and has featured on a variety of related sites including skynetresearch.com and resistorbeterminated.com.

The animation has also been pushed heavily on Twitter and Facebook to thousands of followers making it properly Web2.0.















The short film incorporates video footage with my own animation to high-light the technological advances made by Skynet in it's quest to 'Bring mankind and technology closer together, for a better future.'

The script was written by myself and performed by Melissa Bramley.















So far the clip has received massively positive feedback from lots of people even as far away as Singapore. Click here for the highly complimentary TOYSREVIL post.

It is fantastic to be part of the campaign for Terminator Salvation as I'm a huge fan of the original films and I'm really looking forward to the latest instalment. It looks like Mc G has done a fine job!

You can view the video below. Hope you enjoy.

Thursday, 14 May 2009

Bamboozled? Video Footage



Here's some video footage taken on the night. Take a look if you managed to come along, you might see yourself on there. If you couldn't make it (like me) then take a look to see what went on.

It looks like it was a great night, well done to Kanoti for organising it all. Hopefully more of the same soon!

Friday, 8 May 2009

Modern Toss presents An Evening of Edwardian Chamber Filth




















Another animation event in Brighton! This time its "classic Modern Toss sketches projected onto a big screen and re-interpreted with a LIVE string quartet and piano." Sound good? I reckon so!

I hear they've got the voice of Drive-by Abuser doing a bit of live shouting as well, which should be brilliant. I'm not going to stand near the front though incase he directs some of it at me.

Ignore the dates on the flyer, its been moved to the 29th and 31st of May so there's still time to get yourself a ticket to this unique show. Click here to book now.

I think, although this is not confirmed that one of the sketches getting the live treatment will be the Sneezeman animation I did for Modern Toss series 2. I certainly hope so, it would be great to see it up on the big screen!

BAMBOOZLED? Outdoor animation screening














If you're out and about in Brighton on the 9th of May 2009 between the hours of 9 and 10 pm then why not check out a night of animated shorts including work from Local Talent including Kanoti, Modern Toss / LSM, Tokyo Plastic, Crush and Cyriak.

It is part of the Brighton Fringe Festival and is all in aid of promoting alcohol awareness plus it's FREE!!!

I was involved with two of the pieces being shown, the first is the DIMA Award winning "Work Experience" by Modern Toss and LSM, I was the Supervising Animator and second is "Winter Song" the music video for Grammy nominated singer Sara Bareilles for which I was again the supervising animator, this time working with Crush Design and LSM.

For more information click here.

Wednesday, 29 April 2009

Robot at the Movies














More success for Robot! This time it is going to be screened before showings of Michael Caine's new film "Is Anybody There" at the newly refurbished belsize park cinema, starting this Friday.

For more information and bookings click here.

Needless to say this is very exciting, sharing the same screen with the legend that is Michael Caine is quite an honor and I can't quite believe it!

The film has had great reviews (Michael Caine's film that is) and will hopefully attract a discerning crowd that will enjoy my little story of a Robot who finds himself replaced by a newer model and evicted from his home by his elderly owner.

Its good to hear that shorts are getting screened before features as well. Its a great boost for the film makers and is a treat for the audience too. I remember when I went to see a film at the cinema when I was younger with my family and they showed a short cartoon about some ducks, I was very confused as I wasn't expecting it and thought even then at my early age that someone was trying to con me. When it finished I remember about half the people in the room getting up to go home murmuring "Is that it?" as they went, luckily the film started before anyone made it to the door and they went back to their seats.

Hopefully some small child will go through the same roller coaster of emotions as me when my film is shown, then twenty years later they'll be writing about some weird short they saw once about cardboard.

Friday, 20 March 2009

Robot On YouTube

At last you can check out my Straight 8 2008 entry 'Robot' on Youtube.

I filmed my entry to this years competition last weekend, stay tuned for more info...

Saturday, 7 March 2009

The Three Fellas














This picture is from a piece we did last year. To celebrate Liverpool's City of Culture 2008 award a one off comedy event took place featuring three of Ireland's best known comedians.

This animation was commissioned to play before the event inside Liverpool's Echo Arena and was meant to celebrate the long history between Liverpool and Ireland.

The idea behind the project was to span a timeline starting from when the Irish first arrived in Liverpool and journey right up to the present day. The visual style of the piece was based on the Book Of Kells, a medieval tapestry considered to be one of Ireland's national treasures.

This meant a lot of detailed drawings were required which was very time consuming but in the end, very rewarding.

Monday, 2 March 2009

Robot at Cambridge Super 8 Film Festival















Another result for Robot.

This time it has been selected for screening at the Cambridge Super 8 Film Festival on April 30th. The festival it's self runs from April 29th until May 2nd. Check it out if you can:

http://www.cambridge-super8.org/

There seems to be a lot of opportunity for films made on 8mm film, I guess with all the outlets for digital film these days its something a bit different. I think the look of the picture you get using an old camera and some super 8 stock has a lot to do with it, it's got a real quality to it that you just don't get with digital. That and the novelty of actually developing a reel of film before you can see whether what you have filmed has even come out!

That was my biggest worry when making Robot. It was my first attempt at using a Super 8 camera and although I received some top advice I can't believe it all came out so well.

Check Robot out here, enjoy:

http://www.getcloser.com/event/audioandvideo/straight+8/125/7410/

Robot in Shots Magazine




















Robot, the film I made for Straight 8 08 (see earlier post) is still going strong. This month it was featured on a DVD accompanying trade magazine "Shots"!

I believe it is subscription only but you can get an idea at the website here:

http://www.shots.net/home_beta.asp

"Shots showcases cutting-edge creativity in global advertising." So it says on the website, so its a good thing to be in with. Thanks again to the Straight 8 folk for putting my film 'out there!'

Tuesday, 3 February 2009

Sneezeman Paint












This is quite an old one but is still one of my favourites.

One of the characters I animated for Modern Toss Series 2 was Sneezeman. In this particular sketch he is trying to paint a window but due to his chronic sneezing condition ends up making a bit of a mess.

Visual comedy is one of my favourite things to animate as well as stuff breaking so this piece was great fun to do. I made the paint splats by flicking ink all over some paper and scanning it in. You can't beat doing these things for real.

The series went on to be nominated for a Rose d'Or, which in TV land is very high praise indeed!

Herbert & Norton











Commissioned by brand new Channel 4 initiative '4Mations' in association with Lupus Films and Aardman.

Herbert and Norton was featured on the new site as part of it's launch and joined a whole host of other pieces from all over the country. It features a happless Scotsman and his talking pants as he auditions for Scotlands answer to Britains Got Talent. Its in extremely bad taste and animating it actually left me feeling queezy...

Check it out if you think you can handle it.

http://www.4mations.tv/clip.aspx?key=A207881BD7039569&ctx=medialist&type=video

Monday, 2 February 2009

Work Experience - Modern Toss












After having worked with Modern Toss on Series 2 of their tv show we were fortunate enough to be asked back again, this time to animate the short 'Work Experience' as part of the E4 Funny Cuts scheme.

It was shown late on a week day night which meant unfortunately that not many people got to see it, but it got it's moment of glory at the end of 2008 when it picked up 'Best Use Of Animation' at the DIMA Awards, I highly prestigious event covering the whole Southern region of the UK.

Check out the trailer at the link below.

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x6err6_work-experience-by-modern-toss_shortfilms

Sunday, 1 February 2009

Robot















ROBOT is the name of the short film I directed as my entry to the Straight 8 film competition. All films had to be filmed on one cartridge of super 8 with all editing done in camera. The soundtrack is then created separately. The first time you see your film is in a screening full of people!

But how do you know how it has turned out, I hear you say! You don't. Fortunatley for me it turned out very well and was selected for screeing at the Cannes Film Festival, The Cannes Lions, Soho Rushes Short Film Festival and Brighton CineCity Film Festival.

Thursday, 29 January 2009

Winter Song - Music Video for Sara Bareilles












Just before Christmas we completed this music video for Sara Bareilles and Ingrid Michaelson.

The track 'Winter Song' was taken from the festive US album Winter Songs and was released shortly before Sara was nominated for two Grammys.

The video follows the animated versions of Sara and Ingrid as they go about their dailly business of collecting black hearts from the frozen landscape, taking them home and putting them into plant pots. The video was unfortunatley only ever broadcast in the US but you can view a version of it online at the link below.

http://www.people.com/people/article/0,,20244199,00.html