My Passion is Animation!
I love stop-motion animation as it is a fantastic universal tool that everyone of every age has the ability to engage and enjoy. With just just a handful of lego and a £3 webcamera, futuristic and far out concepts can be created and explored quickly in fun, creative and engaging ways. Since 2010, I have been teaching children aged between 7 and 18 how to make animations within a variety of genres and styles. In this time I have seen some absolutely brilliant young visionary film makers, who I am sure will one day be shaping the way British film is made and seen.
My Own Animations
Although I teach a great deal of animation, I still try and find time to make some of my own. However, most of the animations I make, I make for myself. As a result I try make films and animations that appeal to me.
Sometimes this produces amazing stuff, other times it produces rubbish but at least I can say they’re all mine.
Check out a handful below:
I made this for Film Northants 2012. After loosing in the finals in the two previous years with short fun films, I decided to go all out with a dark Animation Noir. Made using an experimental technique of 3d rotoscoping, I produced this short animation in a little over 5 weeks.
Disparu won two awards at Film Northants 2012, winning the Judges Choice Award and the Anniversary Award. It also went onto being shortlsited for the Firstlight Awards in London Liecester Square in 2013.
Wanted (Lego Space Battle)
Who doesn’t love lego?! I made this short lego animation whilst recovering from an appendicitis at home. As I wasn’t able to move around much, Lego became a great tool to keep the brain active in a fun and engaging way.
This animation is fairly old now but one I’m still proud of. Made whilst on the Great Primate Handshake in Kenya 2009, I was given a brief to appeal to 7 – 70 year olds, so I decided to produce a rotoscope animation, retelling the story of Poco, a chimp caught in the illegal pet trade. Made in 4 – 5 days in essentially a bush clearing on a Macbook, I ended up turning my brain to mush and eyes to butter, but without a shadow of a doubt still one of my proudest films.
Below I’ve listed a few examples of children’s work plus a quick explanation as to how they were made and what equipment they used. If you’d like more information as to in how any of these films were made, please feel free to let me know:
House of Death
This short stop-motion animation was made by a group from the Steelbacks Animation Club in just over three days. Using I Can Animate, a webcamera and handful of desk lamps, they were able to create a very effective scary film for the Halloween showcase. The film involved a number of quite detailed sets, which the boys used effectively with the lighting and cameras they had. The short film was such a success, it even went on to being shortlisted at the Film Northants finals in 2013.
Lego Star Wars
This amazing Lego animation was one of three films made by one student over two years. Although he spent a lot of time on other projects (notably the Daventry First Light Project), his Lego Star Wars fan film become a labour of love, which he used as a funky time filler between school and his other film projects. Made using only lego and few bits of plasticine, the film developed naturally over time, becoming a personal piece that the student was able to reflect upon positively, seeing in the films he made how far his ability had progressed.
For more films, check out my YouTube Channels: