Category Archive: Animation

Donka Danka

February 20, 2015

One of my favourite activities with Alexander is talking nonsense language at each other, he’s always found it hilarious when I come out with a stream of utter bibble and he’s getting pretty adept at it himself. He regularly wanders the house singing songs of his own devising.

I’ve been learning motion graphics – through Lynda.com, mostly the really good course by Crish so I put together an animation using some of Alexander’s most used gibberish in a kinetic typography style.

Packaging History of Guns CDs for reviewers

May 11, 2008

A monotonous task captured for posterity?

Soooo…. an explanation: I had to package up 200 History of Guns CDs and send them out to reviewers. An exceptionally dull task, actually an exceptionally frustrating task as I kept running out of stuff (ink/envelopes/etc). For the most part this task takes the form of making great piles of stuff, doing something to each item in that pile then moving them onto the next pile (add address sticker -> move to next pile -> add airmail sticker -> move to next pile, etc etc). In the interests of making a boring job ever so slightly less boring, I stuck my camera on a tripod and took shots at random intervals. I then fed the pictures into Edit Studio, the result looked quite pleasant so I did a set of 3 credit sequences (Intro, middle, end) using the same technique, stitched it all together in Edit Studio and uploaded it to the web.

This was completely unplanned, no retakes, no colour correction, no lighting, just hacked up as I went along.

I used a Nikon D40X for all the shots. It worked well for the credits but not massively well for the actual time lapse as if you don’t use the remote mode for a couple of minutes it switches back to normal mode and you need to then use the shutter release on the body, which of course causes a little camera shake/position change. I assume I can adjust this but didn’t plan in advance.

The credits were done using printed A4 sheets taped to a cardboard box on the patio with me scribbling over the text with a marker in chunks, I gave myself unpleasantly sore elbows from lying on the concrete (lack of planning). I like the credits, I’d assumed the sunny day would have given more light than it did (lack of planning) but it’s all legible.

All editing was done in Edit Studio which I still adore, I still have not found the cash/motivation to pay Adobe for a video editing suite, although I have done a few bits of paid video editing lately, Edit Studio has managed nicely thankyouverymuch.

As this is the internet and anyone can comment (and probably will), I feel I must add that this was NOT a professional piece at all, it was a bit of fun to take the edge off a thankless task. There are many parts of it (all of it?) that could be done better/in a different manner but this was more about the process than the result.

It was never intended as an advert for History Of Guns or for public consumption but I’m fairly happy with the result (as far as unplanned noodling goes). I added the HOG bits as they seemed appropriate (and otherwise I’d have little to say on the credits). I’m a little disappointed I didn’t include the entire HOG press push, I’d already posted about 100 copies and had packaged about 60 copies before I started taking shots.

More soon, I appear to have a backlog of recent creative STUFF I’ve failed to upload. I keep feeling the desire to write articles about random subjects but trying to reign it in and focus on notes on my own creative works. May actually update the WP template at some point as well.

Killer B-Movie Back Projection

March 3, 2008

Got a random call from Kneill of Killer B-Movie asking if I knew how to make an old horror film style hypnotic spiral that changed colour over time. Apparently I do.

This is only a sample of the full DVD which is an hour long and cycles through a variety of colours, a complete colour change every five minutes. I had been tempted to do something a bit more extravagant with it but Kneill really wanted something simple and uncluttered. It’s intended as a backdrop for their gigs so hopefully the audience will be looking at the band more than the animation. This is the first gig projection I’ve been involved with in years, I’m going to go along to the gig and see how it works out (Killer B-Movie, March 21st, The White Horse, High Wycombe), come along it will be fun.

The spiral was drawn in Adobe Illustrator, imported into Flash, animated as a simple rotation, exported to an AVI, imported to EditStudio, old film effect added and tweaked, Vignette added, colour change on a keyframe every 5 minutes. Exported to AVI burnt to DVD. I quite like the final product (given it took all of an hour), it reminds me a bit of the steampunk graphic style used in Bioshock (although nowhere near as good). Kneill was happy with it, he was still playing it on the big screen on the wall of his tattoo shop when I left, I like that he had a customer sitting in the chair watching the spiral.

I’m still tempted to get hold of the Adobe video editing suite, but the cost is just too much right now, EditStudio does fine for the two video edits I tend to do a year, given a bit of spare time and money I’d like a chance to get good at it.

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I am Bob. This is my blog. It is an outlet and a substitute for real life. It contains my art, photography, illustration and thoughts on mental health (I deal with anxiety on a pretty much constant basis).

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