For the last few weeks, I've been working on my fourth-year film- a stop-motion film!
So far I've been working on the story and designs- I'll be posting some progress on the puppets, sets and animation here as I go. For now, here's a drawing from my initial pitch- I'm excited to show more soon!
It was an awesome experience to get to make
this film with such a lovely, hardworking, and talented group of people. The
description on Grounded’s vimeo page has links to everybody’s blogs- they all
do great work, so go check them out!
Here’s some of the preproduction work I
contributed, mainly done in gouache and paper cutouts:
And here’s a compilation of animation
that I did for the film:
All of the animation in the video is by me- though many of the backgrounds were painted by other team members (there are paintings by Bronwyn, Khoebe, and Evan- I painted the first one and the close-ups).
Over the winter holiday, before production
on the film really got going, I made a puppet version of the little bunny,
Louie (designed by Alex and Steve).
It was a good opportunity to try out some
new things- Louie’s face has magnetic replacement mouths, and his hands and
feet are molded and cast in silicone. He was a fun puppet to make!
For the Action Analysis project this year,
I opted to work in stop-motion. It was my first time developing a stop-mo scene
from start to finish, so there was a lot to learn!
Here are some of the early concept sketches for the set and props, a drawn version of the set layout, and the puppet. I learned so much by building a scene from start to finish- some things worked, some problems were solved along the way, and other parts could definitely be improved. More than anything it showed me that I really like all parts of the stop-motion process, and I'm excited to animate more scenes, build more sets, and keep learning!
Stop-motion animation has always been really interesting to me. Over the past school year I've been working
in stop-motion, and like it a lot! These are the first two puppets I made, in the summer before third year.
Penny the clown is the first puppet that I
built, so the process of making a lot of her parts was new to me. She has a
simple wire and epoxy armature, with cotton and latex hands. Her torso is
carved out of upholstery foam, and her face was sculpted in Sculpey. After the face, arms, and shoes were
painted, I sewed clothing and covered the legs in fabric. Her hair is made of a
synthetic wig which was cut up into small sections, glued to her head, and then
cut to the right length. The whole process of building her was a lot of fun!
To try building a puppet with a different armature
structure, I built this ostrich, named Oliver. This puppet also uses a wire
armature, with cotton, latex and foam over top. The wings and the main portion of the
puppet’s body are covered in fabric and feathers. The material on
his head and neck is grey wool that I needle-felted, and then sewed onto the
puppet. His beak is built with a wire structure inside, covered in cotton and
latex. Oliver has wire glasses and fabric spats, with small
sculpted buttons sewn on.
Oliver and Penny were both great practice
for making puppets, and I learned a lot of things by making them!