Sunday, October 26, 2008


The company behind Purple Ronnie, Coolabi has bought out Licensing by Design who are the current licensee of the marketting and merchandising rights for Bagpuss, The Clangers and Ivor the Engine animations origionally made by Peter Firmin and Oliver Postgate.

Coolabi said Bagpuss in particular had "significant potential" for development and intends to extend the current license beyond 2013. This move extends their current catalogue which also includes Sir Gadabout, King Arthur’s Disasters, The Worst Witch and Fungus The Bogeyman.

AdvertisementBagpuss and friends shop
This shop makes it easy to buy a wide range of products including videos, DVDs and books and a wide range of characters for you to love.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Zombie Pirates

Just a quick note to let you know about the excellent work being done by Marc Spess on his film Zombie Pirates.

Marc was having similar issues to myself with a long running film project that was being made in his spare time, finding time and motivation to get the film completed has proved an issue for him and many other animators. Time management, lack of calendar and having a large ship taking up space in the garage were also mentioned as an issue.

Marc has set himself a 90 day challenge to get the film finished. He set himself the target of working on the film for 2 hours each day and blogging the progress. He's using a calendar to plan out his time and to block out time for the projects and has his todo list properly written and has visualised his targets in the form of a montage.

He's currently up to day 25 and has been building props, sets, shooting scenes and getting his missen ropes untied.

So in the words of Marc, "Stop procrastinating, complete your film".

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

London film festival

The London Film Festival starts today and runs till the 30th looking at the website the collections of short animated films are already fully booked but the feature films are still available.

LFF Shortcuts and Animation

Barry the Worm

Mia and the Migoo

A Tale of Two Mozzies

Friday, October 10, 2008

Eager Beaver

A very Eager Beaver
Eager Beaver was the PSTOIC entry for the Great STOIC Bodge 2000

What is the Great STOIC Bodge?

The Great STOIC Bodge 2000 is a competition devised by STOIC to interest people in the process of video making.
The rules, as far as we could tell were as follows:

  • Single camera
  • No editing other than in camera
  • 50 minutes time limit
  • Finished piece approx 2 to 5 minutes long
  • Audio Dub Available

The PSTOIC entry was "Eager Beaver" a video comic based on the story of Ian Carney and Woodrow Phoenix from Slab-O-Concrete. The technique was one developped by Carl Fairhurst and Andy Clark whilst at STOIC in the 1990s. Basically it's a story book filmed and voiced over with some minimal animation. The same technique has subsequently been used with a book called "The bear at the huntsman's ball".

The Cast
  • Beaver : Olivier Crepin Le-Blond
  • Clem Clam : Andy Clark
  • Mrs Clam : Janette Wickham
  • Narator : Rex Wickham
  • Public Safety Anouncers : Andy, Rex
  • John Lenon : Rex
  • Singing Angel : Janette
  • Other Beatles : Andy, Olivier, Janette
  • Lighting : Fluorescent Tube Company
  • Sound Effects : Wickham and Wife Ltd
  • Catering : Union Bar and Burger King
  • Set : STOIC Studio
Sound Track
  • Caught in a Trap
  • We all live in a Yellow Submarine
  • And the title tune "Eager, Eager, Eager, Beaver"

Unfortunately the film is believed to be lost shortly after it was made (the book can still be ordered from all good suppliers)

John Kricfalusi has recently analysed the composition of an older (and completely different) version of the film Eager Beaver produced by Chuck Jones

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Acting for animations

An acting for animators training course by Twelve J is running in November, price and dates to be announced. Previous 1 day courses by Twelve J were £160 so I'd expect this course to be in the same ballpark.

The course will be presented by Ed Hooks, author of the book of the same name and seasoned animator. Brad Bird described Ed as follows, "Ed Hooks knows that in the very best animated films, movement defines character: Lady moves differently than Tramp, Woody moves differently than Buzz, and Wallace moves nothing like Gromit. By looking outside the medium itself, and by intelligently and thoughtfully examining character animation from an actor's perspective, Mr Hooks has made a valuable contribution towards deepening our understanding of it."

This should be a good course, I only wish I had to time and funds to attend.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Flip Animation Festival

Next month is the Flip Animation Festival in Wolverhampton.

Being based in the heart of the Midlands should enable a wide range of people to visit the festival. There will be workshops, experimental animation, panel sessions, feature films and of course short animations.

The full programme is still being finalised but some of the items already selected are: Ninja Theory; Osbert Parker; Sita Sings the Blues; Animated Doctor Who; 4mations and Boulder Media.

Tickets should on sale shortly.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Fidget the Witch

I've just discovered via the stop motion forum that there's a great stop motion project out there called "Fidget the Witch"

Paul J. McConnochie from Inverclyde, Scotland has been making some excellent models and has solid a project outline. The story looks like a good idea and the previsualisation of the witch in the trees is excllent so I believe the project will be sucessful. Like myself Paul's project has had some significant pauses but he's back on the case and if his animation is anywhere near as good as his modelling the results will be fantastic.