Friday, 27 April 2018

Framestore: Live-Action Reference & Animation

Ross Burgess and Oz Gani acting out some dinosaur action
Framestore are a London based animation and VFX company that keeps raising the bar for animal and creature animation.

Paddington 2, was animated at Framestore, and they out-did their own work on Paddington 1 in terms of the quality and believability of the animated performance.

Last week two senior Framestore animators (and the head of talent development) visited my classroom at Escape Studios, to check out our students' work and give us some insights into the Framestore animation workflow.

Thursday, 26 April 2018

Joan Ashworth at London Animation Club 2 May

Joan Ashworth, filmmaker and former head of Animation at Royal College of Art, will show examples from her career in filmmaking and commercials at the London Animation Club on 2nd May.

Joan's work includes BBC Idents, the opening titles for Tim Burton's Batman 1, and her own films, including the multi-award winning How Mermaids Breed, The Web and Mushroom Thief.  She is currently in production of a creative documentary about the artist and campaigner Sylvia Pankhurst and she will show clips and experiments from this work in progress.

Tuesday, 24 April 2018

How to Animate a "Two Shot"

Squirrels by Henry Fenwick - it's all about eye contact
Animating two characters acting is, obviously, more complex than animating one.

One of the most common mistakes made by junior animators when they animate two characters interacting is to forget that the audience can only look at one thing at a time.

The basic rule is when animating two characters is to keep it simple, and try to avoid having too much happening at once.

Monday, 23 April 2018

How to Create a Face Camera in Maya

We recommend always creating a Face Camera when you animate characters in Maya. The reason for this is that you don't want to keep having to zoom in on your character in the viewport to find the facial controls. Constant zooming in and out will slow down your workflow and, worse of all, encourages the animator to neglect the facial expressions altogether. Good facial expressions are crucial to making good animation, because it's how we know what the character is thinking and feeling. And without an emotional underpinning, your audience won't connect to your animation.

Thursday, 19 April 2018

Locksmith Animation Opens in Primrose Hill

Sarah Smith, Elizabeth Murdoch, Julie Lockhart
Good news for the London animation industry; the long awaited Locksmith animation studio, first announced back in 2014,  has opened its new premises in Primrose Hill, housing up to 70 artists.

Locksmith is backed by London VFX house Double Negative, and also supported by entrepreneur Elizabeth Murdoch.

Tuesday, 17 April 2018

Ross Anderson Pulls a Rabbit out of a Hat

Canadian author and animation historian Ross Anderson is putting the finishing touches on his forthcoming book - Pulling a Rabbit Out of a HatThe Story Behind the Making of Who Framed Roger Rabbit?

Ross's book aims to be the definitive story of the ground-breaking film which I, along with with many others, was lucky enough to have worked on back in the late 1980s.

Almost everyone who worked on the film now knows Ross - his many recent visits to London included trips to the pubs where we used to drink after hours, and Ross interviewed many, many people who worked on the film to tell the story as accurately as possible.

Thursday, 12 April 2018

Graduation Day 4 September 2018

Graduation Day 2017
Graduation Day is coming. Our newest MA animation graduates will attend graduation day at Buckinghamshire New University in High Wycombe, on Tuesday 4th September at 2.30pm.

On that day, Bucks will welcome all the online MA graduates to come and celebrate their achievement.

Of course, the event is something of a formality - no-one actually has to turn up, but we hope that many of our online animation students will come and celebrate their achievement - graduating as Masters of Arts on the world's first online MA in Animation.

Wednesday, 4 April 2018

Where are the Games Jobs?

Check out the excellent Gamesmith Dev Map of games development studios (and therefore games jobs) around the world. It's a great starting point for anyone looking to apply for work as an animator in the rapidly expanding games industry.