- My idea development in production journal:
2. Practitioner: NICK PARK
My practitioner is Nick Park who created Wallace and Gromit series and has worked in Aardman Animations Ltd, which is also known as Aardman Studio or just Aardman in Bristol. This company was founded in 1972 by Peter Lord and David Sproxton-it uses stop motion, claymation and Plasticine, which is used to create Wallace and Gromit. Link: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aardman_Animations.
NICK PARK’S WORK: When Nick Park was aged thirteen, he created his first animation and his parents gave him a home movie camera which could take single frames. Because at this time, Nick was only interesting in art so he could draw the cartoon. So, his father, who was a photographer, taught him about how animation works . Nick, however, managed to use his early cartoon in animation, and his first animation film was called ‘Fuzzy Felt’. The characters were made from Nick’s mother’s scraps of felt, who was a dressmaker, and then moved them of the board. In addition, Nick also created ‘The Rat And The Beanstalk’ and it is the story of Walter The Rat. It took a day for Nick to create this.
Nick used two characters to create his films, which was inspired from his childhood films for example Laurel & Hardy and Tom & Jerry, and he created a pair Walter The Rat and his pet worm (it’s the victim as this story is about fishing). There are other films that Nick created although no one knows about this: Murph and Bongo which was a caveman and a dinosaur.
Plus, he got nominated for ‘Best British Director’ in 2001 by Empire Awards, UK for Chicken Run (2000) and he shared the nomination with Peter Lord.
3. Complete my Formal Project Proposal (see other blog)
INTERIM DEADLINE: Friday 22nd April 2016
PART TWO: RESEARCH
- Research my PRACTITIONER
- INTRODUCTION: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0661910/bio?ref_=nm_ov_bio_sm
Born in Preston, Lancashire in England on 6th December 1958 and is known as Nicholas Wulstan Parkas it is his birth name. He is the producer and writer for ‘The Curse of the Were-Rabbit’ (2005), ‘Chicken Run’ (2000) and ‘The Wrong Trouser’ (1993)-according to https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nick_Park he is also director, writer and animator for ‘Wallace and Gromit’ and ‘Shaun the Sheep’.
- MEET NICK PARK: http://www.wallaceandgromit.com/nick-park
In his childhood, he loved drawing, including cartoon, as he is a fan of the ‘The Beano’ comic. He used his mother’s camera (home movie) to film and record his film work. Through his childhood, he continued his passion for filming and later he attended the National Film and Television School in Buckingham. In this time of studying, he created Wallace and Gromit characters.
2. CREATING WALLACE AND GROMIT: Nick created Wallace and Gromit for his graduation project and used ‘traditional stop motion techniques’ to create his characters to bring them to life. During his graduation, he created his first Wallace and Gromit film: ‘A Grand Day Out’ and worked with Peter Lord and David Sproxton in Bristol for two summers helping them with their work for BBC TV. Later, Nick’s first work, on animation for Morph, Aardman’s well-known claymation, before he joined full time for a job with Aardman in 1985, where he worked on different projects including Babylon, which is a short funded Channel Four animation and won the multi award video called ‘Sledgehammer’ by artist Peter Gabriel. Then the Aardman team helped Nick to finish his graduation film before the started creating ‘Lip Sync’ a series of five minute film for Channel Four; Nick created one film from this series: ‘Creature Comforts’. When his two films (‘Lip Sync’ and ‘Creature Comforts’) finished in 1989, both films received Oscar nominations for the short animated film category. In addition ‘Creature Comforts’ won the award ‘at the 1990 ceremony’.
NICK PARK’S INSPIRATION: Nick’s inspiration for the Wallace and Gromit film was from his family. In fact, Wallace reminded Nick of his father as he described: “Wallace was incredibly like my dad in many ways…he had ideas and got on with them…”. Plus, for Gromit is named after ‘grommets’ which are the rings or washer used in trade work, Nick heard these words from his brother, who is an electrician. However, Nick created Gromit’s characterisation as ‘intellectual, cultured’ which is a little inspired by the character Snowy from one of Herge’s classic cartoon, called TinTin, which Herge is Nick’s favourite author from his childhood.
NICK PARK’S AWARD/NOMINATION: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0661910/award
Nick got fifty-seven wins and twenty-five notations in total. For example, in 2010, he was nominated in Academy Awards, USA for an Oscar for ‘Best Short Film, Animated’ for the film: ‘A Matter of Loaf and Death,’ which was created in 2008. In 2006, he won ‘Best Feature Film’ for ‘The Curse of the Were Rabbit,’ which was created in 2005, with Steve Box, Peter Lord and David Sproxton at the BAFTA Children’s Award. In addition, he won the Empire Award, UK for ‘Best Director’ for ‘The Curse of the Were Rabbit’ in 2001, with Steve Box. Plus, he got nominated for ‘Best British Director’ in 2001 by Empire Awards, UK for Chicken Run (2001) and he shared the nomination with Peter Lord.
2. Research my COMPETITION
Because my short film is animation and it is linked to Christmas and is about Brussels sprouts being annoyed by other Christmas foods. To create this, I will use clay and include Plasticine which create the eyes. Moreover, I will use character’s eyes to create the emotions and it is also visual for the family. However my aim is to create some comedy and to persuade families whose are Brussels sprout haters to become Brussels sprouts lovers.
My animation is similar to CBBC programme called Ooglies though it used real objects such as food. However, they use ‘google eyes'(find this quote from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OOglies) to create the emotion.
FACT ABOUT OOGLIES:
Ooglies is from CBBC and is produced by BBC Scotland. This programme show is stop-motion animation and it involves ‘short humorous sketches’ with different items relevant to the household and foods. In addition, the reason for using ‘googly eyes’ is because of this show’s title.
Ooglies first aired on 10th August 2009 and shown on CBBC and BBC HD. This show creates two series of thirteen shows fifteen minutes each, plus Ooglies Funsize which arrived in 2015 and program are for five minutes. The genre is comedy.
CAST(S): This was created and written by Nick Hopkin, Tim Dann and Austin Low and also sixteen animators (three of them only created animation for twenty episodes in 2015) include trainee animator (Lewis Firth-Bolton) and lead animator (Wendy Griffiths-twenty episodes, 2015) and animation supervisor (Andy Wyatt).
3. Research my TARGET AUDIENCE:
My target audience is families because they normally like to spend time watching animation films together, especially the comedy like Wallace & Gromit series.
Moreover, because my animation is similar to Nick Park’s work of Wallace & Gromit, which is also made of clay and plasticine, this show is focused on their demographic target audience: young people age five to fifteen while adults age sixteen to thirty-four years old with both gender and general ethnicity and religion. Plus, the psychographics which is focused on family.
4. Research any LEGAL/ETHICAL ISSUES (regulation)
My animation idea is based on a Christmas theme. It will be a short film and is about a brussel sprout who’s being annoyed by other Christmas foods.
I had a chat with James and he said that my animation idea didn’t contain effects for example, flashing lights/images which can cause epileptic seizures or contain any horror or violence. James also said that I should check the Ofcom regulation.
Ofcom regulations (only in the UK): Ofcom is responsible for ensuring that people are being protected from watching any programmes that could be harmful, like violence. Because my animation film doesn’t contain any harmful content, it should be fine to let my audience enjoy watching it. Also my audience are treated fairly as my animation doesn’t affect their privacy. Link: http://www.ofcom.org.uk/about/what-is-ofcom/
5. Research CONCEPTS/IDEAS/TOPICS that link to my ideas
- My animation idea is related to Ooglies and a bit of Wallace and Gromit. Ooglies is similar to my idea because I use my characters as foods (Christmas food) like Ooglies, and use ‘googly eyes’ to express the emotion. Link: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OOglies
- However, I don’t use real foods to animate like Ooglies. I will use clay and some plasticine to create the Christmas foods, like Nick Park when he created Wallace & Gromit. I also use Plasticine to create ‘google eyes’.
- Therefore, my animation is the same genre: comedy as Ooglies and the Wallace & Gromit, and also the same type of animation genre which is stop motion and focus the target audience: family. Link: http://www.theguardian.com/tv-and-radio/2014/mar/03/how-we-made-wallace-and-gromit
6. Research the TECHNICAL REQUIREMENT (conduct text shots, rough edits etc..)
- TECHIQUE(S): After creating characters using clay or other material such as Plasticine, put it on the set before taking a photograph and then slight move the character to prepare for next shot and so on. When finish the film, you can see the film that shows the character(s)’s motion.
- TYPES: There are different types of effect animation and firstly, strata-cut animation, which is an ‘bread-loaf’ alike that made of clay with the packing of different images inside before it is sliced into thin sheets each time as camera takes a shot. When finished, the film reveals the various imagery the clay was slicing. This animation was first as create by Oskar Fischinger, a German animator, in between 1920s and 1930s. However, this technique changed and was improved by David Daniels in mid- 1990s as he created his sixteen short film- Buzz Box.
- PRE PRODUCTION: Before creating film, you need to plan the pre production: you need to create a storyboard which includes special effects audio and also think of angles for shots. Link: http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/create-claymation-stopmotion-video/
A Close Shave (please click it)
In addition, the script helps to show the emotion and feeling of your characters. Similarly add the right music to match the mood of the characters. Link: http://www.instructables.com/id/How-to-Make-an-Awesome-Claymation
Next to create clay characters, you need to make sure they are right size. Small character models are difficult to change their movements while large model easily ‘fall over’. Also, you need to wire to support the characters while you change their movement. Link: http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/create-claymation-stopmotion-video/
While filming, you can also create the right theme of the set, by using a display board and drawing the background, that matches your animation story idea. In addition, you can use lighting to make the filming clearer and easy to watch even if your background is a bit dark. After filming, you need to use editing to clear pictures that shown any errors like your hands. Link: http://education.wichita.edu/claymation/resources.html
7. Research COST/BUDGETS/PRODUCTION ISSUES
PRODUCTION: The Wallace and Gromit movies use the stop motion techniques after the per production of storyboarding, the set and creation of characters are made by using Plasticine then the filming starts with shooting one of the frames at a time before moving the models (characters) a bit, then taking another shot and so on. In addition, some of the Wallace and Gromit series contain the effect to make the action more exciting for the audience, the effect is called a ‘faux motion blur’ which is a fake motion-you need to create lots of frames to create the look of speed as your models are fake like ‘A Close Shave’ (thirty minutes film), which created twenty four separate frames.
However, some series take longer to create like ‘The Curse of the Were- Rabbit’, the feature- length film ( eighty five minutes) which took fifteen months to complete.
‘A Grand Day Out’ is the first series of Wallace & Gromit which runs for twenty three minutes, and was released on 25th December, 1989. Link: wallaceandgromit.wikia.com/wiki/A_Grand_Day_Out
The budget was £11,000- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Grand_Day_Out
‘The Wrong Trousers’ budget: £650,000- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Wrong_Trousers
‘A Close Shave’s budget: £1.3 million- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Close_Shave
The Curse of the Were- Rabbit’a budget is $30 million (£20.56 million). However, their gross total in the UK is $56.8 million (£38.93 million). Link: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wallace_and_Gromit#Box_office_performance
‘A Matter of Loaf and Death’: £100,000- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Matter_of_Loaf_and_Death
b) EVALUATE/INTERPRET THE RESEARCH:
In far of my research I used the internet to research on Nick Park whose my practitioner, O0glies the animation programme on CBBC which is my competition of my idea, my target audience though I used the resource of ‘Audience classification’ leaflet to give me some idea to create my own target audience. There are not many regulation researchs as my animation idea shows the limit of the regulation through the researched I have on the fact about the Ofcom. Plus, there aren’t many research about the concept related to my idea as well. However, I have researched on animation’s technical and on Wallace & Gromit’s budget and their process of the production.
Moreover, I also used SurveyMonkey to ask my family and friends about animation films they are watching. There are some questions that helped to develop my idea for example there are five people who watch animation program once a month which suggests that they possible watch animation at special season time like Christmas. It gave me a decision that my animation would show at Chrsitmas season only. In addition, question five showed that most people, watch animation for one hour- it means my animation needs to be short, and finally, question six shows that most people watch TV. This mean my animation would be shown on TV the most though it could be update to YouTube.
In conclusion: personally, I feel the use of research through SurveyMonkey is useful because it helped me to develop my idea to create the animation for example the survey show fifty percentage of people watch animation in one hour which give me the idea of creating a short film to put it on TV, as it is suitable for the family. So, the SurveyMonkey was useful for me. However, the internet is also useful because I can find the information I need, and it is quick rather than use a book in the library because it is difficult for me to find the right book and there isn’t any information I needed for my research.
INTERIM DEADLINE: Friday 29th April 2016
Before pre production….
FMP checklist (please click)
PART THREE: CREATE MY OWN FILM
PRE PRODUCTION (paperworks…)
MY SHOT TEST:
POST PRODUCTION (edits, add YouTube e.g.)
- Oh, Brett Sprout! (black & white):
2. Oh, Brett Sprout! (Age Film):
3. Oh, Brett Sprout! (Camcorder):
4. Oh, Brett Sprout! (Simple Border)
5. Oh, Brett Sprout! (Bad TV):
INTERIM DEADLINE: Friday 3rd June 2016
PART FOUR: Evaluate the Final Product
1. My stated aim is to create claymation and, according to my prospal, to focus on young people with general age of eleven years old. I managed to achieve this aim by doing claymation. Also, I created the film, to be short and visual without sound throughout and I added the subtitles for example ‘Boo!’. In addition, I managed to do some animation test shot to experiment with which is using Play- Doh, is work for real film.
2. My work is a bit different from my chosen practitioner, Nick Park, because his work of Wallace and Gromit are made of Plasticine while my work is made of Play- Doh clay. However, I used stop- motion to make my film’s movement become smoother as Nick Park used for Wallace & Gromit. I used the five different style of effect with black and white which is different from Nick Park’s work as he used colour instead. Therefore we use cartoon effects. In addition, Nick makes his characters models more alive by talking while mine’s uses ‘google-eyes’ to express the emotion which make audience understood about their feelings as it is more visual. Plus, I use christmas vegetable for my characters in my film as Nick uses both human and some animals. In addition, me and Nick use comedy genre in our film.
3. Through this final project, I did change the few things:when I created my first idea of my story which is about a Brussel sprout who was being bullied by other christmas vegetables because most people dislike eating brussel sprouts. However, I decided to change this story a bit: this time it is about a brussel sprout being annoyed by other vegetables as he played a bit of a prank on them. Furthermore, when I am filming I managed to follow the storyboard and script but however, I don’t have time to do the opening scene of a house that is covered by snow and Christmas decorations which I was supposed to create it by using the cardboard so I decided use the title: ‘Oh, Brett Sprout!’ with stop motion for the opening scene. Moreover, I was also supposed to do the birds- eye angle of a ‘Brett’ brussel sprout who was being chased by vegetables but it was difficult to do because the tripod didn’t go high enough and my camera would create lot of blurry and movement if I held it. So I decided to use a mid shot angle to create the chase of ‘Brett’ sprout and vegetables instead. In addition, I manage to create some peas, a Brussel sprout, a carrot and parsnip, some potatoes and gravy but didn’t create more as I don’t have enough clay and it take longtime to create.
4. Because I created five different effects in my film with black and white it could attract people of age over eleven- more like adults rather than children as they like to watch films with colour. However, young children may like to watch my characters’ movement in the film and also be attracted to the title: ‘Oh, Brett Sprout!’ as they would see it as a comedy. In addition, they would like to see my characters’ ‘google-eyes’ with their facial expression.
5.This year, I learnt a lot about filming including how to use pre production, production and post production. However, the main thing I have to improve is the shade of lightning in my film. When I create the first project: ‘Re scene’ for ‘Switched At Birth’ clip and I received the positive feedback from Caroline, she told me that I needed to think about lighting because sometime it is difficult to see my characters sign or show their faces but now I can see my film and improve it because I used Final Cut Pro to improve the lighting which allows the audience to see my characters easily.
6. Yes I am proud of my new skills, which is the lighting, because I watched my final project film and despite there being some flashing from the camera, it became clear and easy to watch, also for my audience.
7. There are some things I need to improve on the editing, I need to choose one effect for my film because at moment I use more than one effect which causes a mix of the ‘colour’ and ‘black and white’ and when I want to take off the black and white, to make it colour, it won’t take off. It is why I use black and white with a effect.
8. In real life, in claymation industry like Aardman where Nick Park worked, I would need the crew- the budget would be over millions of pounds so it would be necessary to divide the crew into their roles for example editor(s), producer(s), people who are responsible with lighting etc and it would depend on their work hourly rate. In addition to the budget are also for the props for claymation for example clay or Plasticine include film equipment: camera. Moreover, if I am director, my wage would be higher than other members of the crew.
FINAL DEADLINE: FRIDAY 10TH JUNE 2016