Friday, 22 February 2008


Self Negotiated
Pre-booked the puppet animation studio at college - set up on Tuesday, took a few hours to arrange everything, sort the lighting out and with the aid of Sam became familiar with the software for shooting. Tried a couple of little bits of animation and realised the puppet needs better anchoring so it won't shift whilst I manipulate it. Wednesday morning I glued pins to the end of a few legs and then attempted to make the crab 'walk' It is an age since I have tried stop-motion and no surprise that the movements between frames were too big making for a very cumbersome, lightening quick result. Back into the studio Friday with the aim to make a definite improvement on my earlier efforts and to hopefully produce at least 3-4 seconds of walking. You tube has been a handy resource to view crab movement - very complicated with 6 limbs moving simultaneously. Initially before even setting up and making the puppet I had grand plans to animate the crab and another character interacting with each other-but due to the complexity I thought it would be bette to focus initially on making it walk. However, a few frames into attempting this goal, disaster struck and all of a sudden one of the legs felt a bit strange, looser and then just fell off onto the set. Brilliant, just what I need! As rubbish as it is it did remind me of trips to the beach where you occasionally see random singular dried out limbs of crabs laying in the sand. 'Art' imitating life (albeit in a rather 10p way) With circumstances being beyond my control, the Friday shoot was called off at the first hurdle. Thoughts of different forms of animation for my final project are now in my mind. I'm not sure if stop-motion is for me. It does require an enormous amount of patience and incredible care (I forgot the joys of bashing into the cameras tripod or knocking the puppet with your elbow for instance) but saying that it is fun and satisfying once you have a nice result (but not in this case). I have the studio booked for next week, so this weekend I will see if I can salvage the puppet. Sam advised me on different techniques for wiring the puppet, so I'll give that a go.
So, all that's left to do is re-animate, finish the storyboard, make an animatic and the 'Very Old Man With Enormous Wings in 30 Seconds' film. 
Had a look at a couple of good websites (here and here) with hints and tips for building armatures for puppets. Next time I will twist wire together, making for a stronger longer-lasting result (hopefully)

Sound Design
Did some re-recording with Catherine on Thursday and spent the rest of the afternoon choping up my sounds and putting them in the relevant areas of the film. Still alot to do and the presentation deadline is looming up incredibly quickly! I got a bit sidetracked as I was attempting to record some background music for the start of the film with my stylophone plugged into the mixing desk. Didn't sound too pleasant and I doubt I'll use it. I need to borow recording equipment and gather some 'pub' atmospheric sound. Booked in next week so hopefully I can see that to completion.

Web Design
This was going well but have hit some bumps in the road over the last couple of days. After a tutorial with Sean (showing me once again how to apply Mp3s to a site) I then took this knowledge home an proceed to do it all completely wrong! So I then spent 6 hours trying to work it out, then tried to finish off 2 empty pages only to find my meticulous deign and hard work was for nothing as when I tested them in the internet browser the text couldn't be read in the 'discography' section of my site. Quite dis-heartening as it took ages, but of course I now know what NOT to do (hopefully).

So a busy weekend all round!

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