Wednesday, 7 November 2007

First of many....

Finally I have overcome the 'fear of the blog' and jumped right in! Apologies in advance if these blogs end up as ramblings to nowhere with not a single point to be seen, but bear with me. Currently I'm undergoing a juggling act of getting work done for my MA and working a couple of days a week in a photography studio so I can finance my studies, plus it seems 2 of the 3 bands I play in have now decided it's time again to record and gig alot. So, there's never dull or for that matter a spare moment! Also combined I shall try to get to as many screening at the Aurora animation festival kicking off today in jolly old Norwich. Right, now to back track...
Time seems to be flying by with this one, finlly after a couple of false starts I'm up and running (so to speak) I am colaborating with ex-N.S.A.D. creative writing student Paul Knight. He has written a short stoy entiteled 'The Foxes Tail' a charming story packed full of dream filled anecdotes. We had an extended meeting to chat about this project. My initial aims for the outcomes of this project is to have a storyboard finalised, a style determined, character development and a soundtrack plan. Also if all this comes together I'd like to produce an animatic too (with soundtrack). The meeting went well, lots of brain storming to be had. I gained lots of background information around the story, when and where it was written, what the inspiration was and how he would envisage this if it were to be adapted into a short film. The story was written in Lowestoft, inspired by the sight of a lone fox sat upon a rubbish pile outside a bikers club house cluttered with old motorcycle bits and pieces early on a bleak November morning. We both had similar ideas stylistically, a mix of live action and different styles of animation, nothing too over the top, minimalstic and suggestive. We decided the film would be narrated (perhaps by the authour) Given the historic references I suggested medieval woodcut style imagery for the animation (in past years I have experimented with lino print animaton) which we both agreed may be appropriate. His original vision for the foxes in the story are to be whimsical fairy like creatures, ever pesent yet hardly seen, a reference was made to the end sequence of 'Watership Down' where El-ahrairah comes for Hazel at the end of his life, something similar stylistically where they then float off into the distance. We discussed that somehow insomnia should be portrayed throughout, maybe through the soundtrack - which we initially think should be quite abstract. metallic, clicky yet somehow soothing (?) Through further chat we concluded that there should be no actual representation of night or day within the film, instead sticking to a twilight grey, bleak atmosphere in which color comes during dream sequences. Following our discussion my next move is to piece together a rough story board, produce some illustrations this week and then see what he thinks and discuss further. I intend to get to a bleak area of the East coast to film the ealy morning in the next few days, get into the character design and storyboarding. Pictures to follow as and when I work out how to attach them on a blog! Also should anyone want to have a read of 'The Foxes Tail' please get in touch.
It's all go really... I plan for the rest of this term and next term to adapt the short story 'A Very Old Man With Enormous Wings' written by Gabriel Garcia Marquez. This is one of many stories from 'Leaf Storm' (winner of the Nobel prize for literature in 1982) Following on from my undergraduate research/project on Fairy Tales, my inital thoughts were to adapt this magical realist short story as I think it woill lend itself well to combining diverse animation styles - I think this genre's juxtaposition of banal tone and 'fantastic' imagery would be interesting to utilise in relation to contrasting use of sound and image. Eventually for my final MA project I aim to have this short adaptation completed. I intend to cover all the character design, storyboard, get the puppets made, see if I can blue screen the puppets with the aim to create the scenes in a 3d animation program (which is not decided yet) or perhaps use After Effects for the small sets..don't know yet. I will be collaborating with 2 friends, Tim Snelson who will help with the adaption of the narrative (I am expecting big things given he's a bloody brainy film studies P.H.D. student) also Simon Sandall is going to help with the compostion of the sound track (plus other musician friends I can rope in) Again, images to follow in subsequent posts. Right, better get into the reading material in preparation for the core-unit on Thursday....where's the bloody dictionary?

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