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The reason why I chose the life of an animator

November 18, 2008

Well he’s me trying to get all sentimental I guess. Well, why I chose animation? There are lots of explanations to why we do things I reckon, sometimes they can be called dreams, reality’s, motives or even excuses. I’m not sure really where I lye on that aspect of things, but I have a line that I need to draw called life, and I guess I haven’t finished yet, so no excuse there.

Anyways enough chit chat, I began to like animation quite young as most people I know do. Cartoon Network was one of the first animation channels I used to watch. I remember back then it wasn’t as popular as it was now, and I think even shut off to show black and white movies after 10pm or some late hour. The first animation series that I truly got into had to be Dragon Ball Z (ignoring Pokemon) and that was at the age of 9-10. I still think of the times spent running round the playground rein-acting yesterdays episode, mind you, if we had done it properly, the right way would of been to stand there screaming at each other for the 30Min’s, just like the characters on TV did. That wasnt the first animation I used to watch though, it was more like the Looney Toons stuff I was into. Before more animations where aired on Cartoon Network all I used to watch was this. I was quite young at the time.

Then eventually after the many years of CN, I started to watch the anime series Tenchi Muyo. This was the first short series anime that I watched before going into secondary school . I used to spend many late night recording it so I could watch it the next day. Once I got into secondary school one of my friends there got me watching Naruto. Now before you start to throw pointy or heavy objects at me, I was one of the first to start watching the series before it became popular here in the west, before the heavy and might I add, weird fanbase showed up on the scene. I will never understand the true meaning of fanart, the disturbing fanart anyways.

After the many years of anime that followed until I reached sixth form, I found a convention called the London MCM (movie comic media) Expo held in the Excel Centre at the Victoria Dockyards. You might want to check it out because the first few times I went it had a lot of neat and interesting stuff, for example famous actors and also voice actors of the sort. The first time I went I was able to get a poster signed from Richard Epcar, the voice actor that play Batou from Ghost In The Shell. Ive been about 8 times to the london expo in total so far, but after a while though, I was getting annoyed by the sheer size of the people turning up and the amount of merchandisers which is all you could really see. I might like to note that I have also cosplayed at the london expo, if you dont understand what I mean by that then maybe you will if I said masquerade instead.

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After a while I became really into Japanese culture, and worked on it alot with my art at the time. When I was asked to focus on something else though, I just sat and research Van Gogh who was also influenced by Japanese culture too. Another thing within modern day Japanese culture I got myself interested in, is the Otaku sub-culture which if you dont know what means, heres the wiki page (sorry Jim). In the western anime community its used in the sense your quite into anime in the same way in Japan, in Japan though they have a much more in-depth community surrounding Otakus. Some non-otakus even look down on them because they see them as different, wierd and even dirty people. I picked up an interesting piece of research from the Japanese artist Takashi Murakami who focus’s a lot of his artwork on this. Maybe in another post I will go into alot more detail. Heres the link the interview explaining better what I mean and his site.

I guess I have been quite influenced by Japan and Anime over the years but after beginning my year at UCA Maidstone, Ive begun to realise and open much more to what animation really is. Dont get me wrong, I wasnt expecting to go to UCA and make anime because I knew thats not what animation is, its only a small part of it. I think my start here has really inspired me but given me a lot to take in as well. I have to confess I was really douting myself when I was on my way to beginning the academic year but Ive realised this is what I want to do with myself, and I really want to get the skill and know how to become an animator. I cant explain how but I can feel myself starting to become even more passionate about it. Its going to be tough but I actually know what I want to do now, which is a good step in the right direction XP.

Anyways, now thats finished, I guess its time to upload some work, wait…. organise then upload, or will uploading help me organise?

Till next time I guess

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Sand Animation – Touching and an Amazing Piece of work T_T

July 28, 2009

I got sent this email from my Dad over the sumer holiday from the many he’s been sending me of random jokes and stuff, but this one had me stop for a second because this is absolutely amazing. The music is from the Inqusition Synmphoney’s “Nothing Else Matters”, and the techniques used by the artists, including presision and design is really something I’ve never seen used before, especially on tv too. This was taken from “Ukraines got Talent”, a spin from the one you see in Britian obviously. Please watch for yourself!

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Hellsing

January 4, 2009

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Hellsing is one of my favourite japanese anime artworks. The heavey feel and gothic-ness (word?) around it I find very dark and mysterious. I was more drawn into writing about this one because of the dark colours it uses so well. The reds, blacks and white tones are used in a way to express that gothic medium and dark characteristic about it.

The anime itself was created by Kouta Hirano who authored the original manga before being turned into an anime and then into an OVA. There are two very distinct styles when taking into account whether the anime/manga was a anime or manga first before it became either one of its counterparts. You can generally notice the difference between whether something was released as a manga or anime first. I find the cut on a anime is much cleaner if it was released that way first, and you can find a certain amount of sketchy-ness (word again?) if it a anime released from a manga. If you get what I mean, job done, if not shame on you! People take the time to understand Shakespeare so why not me?

Next Time

ps: Hope Everyone had a good Christmas/New Year!

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Animations

December 8, 2008

Here are some animations I had to do as part of the animation excerise. I thought I would post them up in one big bunch to make it easier.

Update – Looks like Youtube doesnt like my .mov files and wordpress wont take them, so I’ll have to upload them at a later date. Probably for the best.

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Tutorial – Lip Sync Exercise

December 5, 2008

In this tutorial as the title states, we took part in a lip sync exercise. We where all split up into several groups first and then given a different part of a sound bite in which to lipsinc to. In order to do this we had to cut out several different things such as heads, objects etc from newpapers and magazines. These cutouts would then be put together to make the person that was going to talk. In order to get the person to lip sync correctly we had to draw and cut out several different shaped mouths. These would help form the different sounds used during the speaking process. We where to take all these different mouth and cutouts and shoot them in accordance to the soundbite, so it looked like them talking or effectively lip syncing. Here is the finished product that the whole class produced in the end, you’ll find the ones that our group completed was the one with O J Simpson and the one with the old man towards the end. Enjoy…

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Supporting Studies – Use of Line

December 5, 2008

On this fridays lesson I have to say we focused mainly on line and different attempts to use line in different ways. The first set of pictures made by only drawing in the main shadows that where on a person. This was useful but because I think I was so used to drawing figures whole, I found it quite hard to only look at the shadows then on. This was an iteresting excersise but I think I need more practice using toning a shading. I should put that forward as a useful lesson.

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The next set of drawings where made using different types of line. These where all different types of emotion, so for example, the last dark one is one of anger and so on. This was useful because it can show how you can use expression in that way. By using a different style of drawing you can use it to manipulate the emotions you want to get across.

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This last one was an odd one, we had to practice drawing in three different ways. The first one was by looking at the person we where drawing but never looking at the paper we where drawing onto. The second one was by looking at the person for 20secs and then closing or eyes to draw what we could remember, still not looking at the paper. The last one was a bit easier for me because it required us to draw with our other had, so for me that was my right hand (yes im one of the few that is left handed).

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This was a interesting experimentation though I dont think I’ll be drawing with my eyes closed, creating masterpieces any time soon, unless that could be considered an art form?

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Supporting Studies – Storyboarding – Working Within a Shape of a Frame

December 5, 2008

Here we where asked to create several different shaped frames an then asked to create a storyboard with them.  I really enjoyed this exercise because it had a twist to it which found quite interesting to work with. Also it helped me experiment with the different ways in which you can create effectiveness by using different shaped frames.

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Supporting Studies – Life Drawing Exercise – Emotion

December 5, 2008

Here we where asked to draw a person who was showing a particular mood. We drew several different characteristics of these emotions to help get a better idea on the stance that a person has in that moment. It helped me because it shows what different parts of their body language give of the aura that they are in fact happy, sad etc…

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Supporting Studies – Looking at Angles

December 5, 2008

For this particular supporting studies lesson we where asked to experiment and focus on the use of angles within the actual body figure itself. I found this very useful because I find it quite hard sometimes to get the body proportions and angles to match. Focusing on angles give you a deeper feel for the acutal position and stance of a drawing, its to give a understanding to the dynamic that makes the drawing come together.

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Appleseed

November 21, 2008

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Now I started to come away from the mainstream anime such as Bleach and Naruto for about a year now, and its really opened my eyes to a lot of other anime’s out there, I have watched them before, but Ive begun to appreciate them more than I should of done.

Appleseed is a classic that everyone should watch at least once, especially if you are an animator anyway. Its a film that was written by Haruka Handa and Tsutomu Kamishiro, and directed by Shinji Aramaki. Its the first out of the two movies, the second being called Appleseed EX Machina, and all the characters are based on the manga series characters originally created by Masamune Shirow the all time creator and father to the Ghost in The Shell series.

If you like CG and the anime style then you should definatly consider watching this as its a great film. Again if theres not a copy available in the library then just ask me for my copy to borrow.

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Versus

November 21, 2008

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I’m quite into Asian film so I could go on forever and list some really good movies but, Im just going to pick a few of the ones I really like. I watched Versus for the first time about a year ago and thought it was a great film. Versus was written by Ryuhei Kitamura and released in 2000, its classed as a Japanese action/horror film. The things I really liked about it was because it was different. The story was different, the characters had a wide mixture of personalities and the scene is very unlikely.

I think there is also a wide variety of camera shots and motions used so If your interested in that you should definitely take a look to see what I mean. I don’t want to say too much just to not give it away but, if your into both Asian cinema/martial arts then you should definitely take a look into it. Its kind of hard to get a decent cheap copy today, I had to go up to HMV in London Piccadilly to get mine after ordering it from them and never getting a copy, so if you want to take a look just ask to borrow it from me, though I thing the library has a copy on VHS.

Theres no good quality youtube links to the trailer so heres the one on IMDB http://www.imdb.com/video/screenplay/vi199295257/