Thursday, January 31, 2013

FAO CGAA Year 1: Story & Commission 'From Script To Screen' - Your Online Greenlight Review Part 2 08/02/2013

Friday, 8th February is your From Script To Screen Online Greenlight Review Part 2

Your OGR Part 2 is to be presented as a single Scribd presentation on your blog, beginning with your name, date, and project title. Your OGR presentations should be uploaded to your blogs by 9 pm on Friday 8th February  Written feedback will follow as a 'comment' on your OGR post and will take between 1 - 3 days.

From Script To Screen OGR Part 2: What do you need to present?

  1. Your final script (presented in accordance with screenplay conventions).
  2. Your completed storyboards* (not 'presentation' quality at this stage).
  3. Production drawings/concept art (environments/props).
  4. Production drawings/concept art (character)**.
  5. Your definitive influence map (overall production design/visual concept for animated short).
  6. Your definitive influence map(s) for character.
  7. All film reviews so far (La Jetee, Rope, Psycho, The Birds, Jaws)
  8. Your creative partnership archive so far (Please note: if you're not engaging in a creative partnership as requested formally by your brief then please email me at to explain any issues preventing you from doing so).
  9. In addition, your OGR should evidence that you are up-to-date with your ongoing CG Artist's Toolkit project work (life-drawing/Maya tutorials/Meg's animation exercises etc).  Your OGR might include links to the corresponding posts and/or images. Historically, students who use their OGR to manage their weekly tasks in this way manage their workloads more successfully.
 I look forward to seeing some entertaining, image-rich and exciting OGRs on Friday 8th February.  Do not disappoint.  It's time you got busy, ladies and gents... Much busier.

* Remember, I will be looking for clear evidence that you're using and applying the conventions of storyboarding (illustrated camera moves, named shots, 'breaking the frame' etc.).  I want evidence too that you're using your life-drawing expertise, growing knowledge of the principles of animation, and experience of pre-viz camera techniques in the composition and communication of your story. I want to see storyboard panels distinguished by expressive drawing, dynamic poses and clearly choreographed camera. I want to see you 'directing with a pencil' and doing so with panache, imagination and style! No generic, unmotivated set-ups please - make every shot contribute to the telling of your story.

** Designing a character isn't the same as just drawing one. Please refer to all the resources available to you on myUCA and in the library.  I want to see characters for animation - not just drawings of generic people wearing different hats and costumes! 

New Designers 2012 Showreel with CG Highlights

I just bumped into this post on facebook from the New Designers page. There are some shots from the CG Arts and Animation stand. This was the description of it below:

"New Designers Showreel - Best of 2012's show Far from twiddling our thumbs for the past few months we've been hard at work on a few little projects. One of them is a fantastic showreel that brings together the highlights of last year's show in a 3 minute video. It's pretty difficult to encapsulate the energy,quality and breadth of design disciplines typical of New Designers in such a short amount of time, but we think we've done a pretty good job."

Freelancing with People per Hour

''PeoplePerHour helps people start and build their own businesses and live their dream of being independent''

I've been asked to share this post about a  very neat website, called People Per Hour . It is a great platform for creative freelancers because it offers wide range of  projects to take part in! From logo design to 3D visualisations, animations and even filmmaking!  It is  similar to Guru Elance but focuses more on England-based clients . 

All you need to get you going is set up a profile for clients to find you or send direct proposals instead. When a proposal is won, you arrange deposits and invoices before starting your work for the client.

Few other tips from would be to get people endorse your skills as well as making sure you deliver top quality work so there are some 5 stars reviews on your profile! 

I have just finished a project, which you can read more about here. It was  a brilliant experience so far

Wish you luck!

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

CGAA: One a Day: Paperman (Full Film)

It's official! Paperman is out :)

FAO Everyone: This Friday + Graphic Tablets

This Friday and next, Photoshop Phil has a cameo role on Creative Arts For Theatre & Film.  He will be giving the CATF year one students a quick spin around Photoshop and graphic tablets.  What this means is that all graphic tablets will be out of use for CGAA students on both these dates.  The graphic tablets belong to Central Resources, but we look after them because you're pretty much the only students who use them on a daily basis.  If you could ensure that all graphic tablets are returned to the CGAA office by 5pm tomorrow in readiness, that would be appreciated.  Many thanks.

Tutorphil says 'Thank you!'

I just wanted to say a great big thank you to all those year one students who very kindly put the lightboxes etc. back in the CGAA baseroom for me after your animation sessions today.  I was caught up with an applicant with awol parents and when I rushed downstairs to find everything already back in place, I was very touched - and very grateful (especially as I know how fragile some of you were feeling after your 'C02' experience...).  You didn't have to do it - but you did, which makes you wonderful people!  Anyway, thanks again - much appreciated.  You're fab! :)

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

*Missing Glasses*

I misplaced a pair of glasses last week friday, they are brown with gold decorations on the side of the frames.

If anyone finds them please let me know.

Thank you

FAO Years 2 and 3: Change to the timetable


The following changes to the timetables will take place due to a clash of bookings in DM3.

Year 3 Maya Class

 This will now be held at 2pm on Tuesdays.

Year 2 Adaptation 'Drop in Tutorials' 

These are now unavailable. However time will be allocated at the end of Thursday's Maya class for anyone needing help with there projects.

The timetables have been reissued with these changes on My UCA

Reminder: The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou - January 31st - Lecture Theatre One @ UCA Rochester - 5:00pm till 7:00pm

Just a reminder that this week’s ‘UCA Film Thursday’ screening is Wes Anderson’s The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou. This quirky comedy, partly based on the exploits of Jacques Cousteau and Jean Painleve, should make an enjoyable change of pace from last weeks challenging Raging Bull. Though I hoped that film proved a rewarding experience!  

January 31st - Lecture Theatre One @ UCA Rochester - 5:00pm till 7:00pm

Monday, January 28, 2013

New Student Blogs

Hi all - a couple of new blogs you need to add to your reading lists: introducing Adrian Alemany @  Adrian joins us from Spain for Term 2 of year 2 - so do make him feel at home.  And welcome back to Orisakolade @ - who has relaunched with a brand new blog, so be sure to update. 

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Post With The Most 27/01/2013

Better late than never!  Yes, this brand new edition of the CGAA PWTM is a little late going to press.  This tardiness is due in part to my recent adventure across the pond, which saw me discussing our course with an international assembly of learned sorts at the University of Central Florida, Orlando.  I could also blame the recent snow for the disruption or the triple dip recession or recalcitrant jet lag, but instead let's just get the show on the road...

... starting with a selection of year one work originating from their Term 1 'Secret Lairs' project brief, which saw them challenged to design, model, texture, light and render their very first Maya digital set.   The project began with students selecting two random story components from the infamous CGAA 'blue box of mystery': a character type + derivation (ethnicity, planet of origin etc.).  Our year one students had to first create concept art paintings of their respective characters' HQs, and then translate them into like-for-like CG sets.

Katy Fosdike - The Secret Lair Of The Pagan Colossus

Alex Edmonds - The Secret Lair Of The Martian Alchemist

Sam Niemczyk - The Secret Lair Of The Venusian Queen

George Hind - The Secret Lair Of The Sumatran Superhero

George Nwosisi - The Secret Lair Of The Hyperborean Cannibal

Emily Clarkson - The Secret Lair Of The Arachnid Knight

Lucy Yelding - The Secret Lair Of The Saharan Inventor (concept art)

Akinbiyi Barbarinde - The Secret Lair Of The Kung-Fu Thief (concept art)

Anass Moudakir - The Secret Lair Of The Electrical Secret Agent (concept art)

It wasn't first years alone synthesising bold, cogent visions from unpredictable beginnings. The year 2 Character Design unit began similarly with sessional lecturer, Justin Wyatt challenging students to devise a trio of original characters for a prospective cartoon series inspired by categories of character-types paired by chance.  For example, Tom Farrington was dealt 'Anthropomorphic' and 'Superhero' on the day of the briefing, from which he evolved Experiment IX - a fully fledged concept for an animation and its cast of memorable characters.  Check out Tom's character bible below - and enjoy some other highlights from this year's submission. 

Tom Farrington - Experiment IX

Alice Druzga - Mythic Pirates

Joey Ku - The Rise Of The Aesir Gods

Emma Foster - Interplanetary Lyra (sidekick)

Steve Payne - Snake Eyes (sidekick + prop)

The other big January news is that CGAA year 3 have now submitted both their minor projects and dissertations, which leaves the way nice and clear for the production of their final projects.  Can it really be true we're on that final countdown already?  It won't be long until thoughts of New Designers and graduation come to preoccupy us, but let's take a moment to enjoy the fruits of our year three's labours with this selection of their minor projects. 

Alex Zepherin - The Peacock & The Crane

Molly Bolder - Proportion

Character Turnaround

Domantas Lukosius - Art In The Dockyards 

Dan Rolph - Warbreakers


Bharathi Anthonysamy - Mahiki

Mahiki - Sound design

Andriana Laskari & Dayle Sanders - Kinnaree

Aidan Codd - The Bronze Ballet

Sam Tremain - Five Man (The Island of Dr Moreau)

Christmas must seem like a million years ago now (except the streets around my way are still strewn with forlorn looking trees awaiting their fate), but unseasonable though it maybe, I wanted to compile and share a selection of the festive-themed images produced by CGAA students as part of the CGAA Speed Paint Challenge - a daily exercise in impromptu digital painting that took place over the Christmas holidays.  I was personally very excited by the creativity, energy and enthusiasm with which the CGAA community greeted this challenge; it was a real joy to see new work arriving daily on your blogs.  Unlike Christmas, the CGAA Speed Paint Challenge isn't just a 'once a year thing' - so keep your eyes on the group blog - because who knows when the next challenge will go live...

A quick round-up of some alumni news now... Late last year I met CGAA graduate, Jon 'Class of 2010' Stewart for a a pint and a catch-up.  In truth, he was pretty tired - and no wonder, as he was spending his long days at Cinimod Studio making endless improvements to an aquarium's worth of photorealistic cg fish!  At last, the results of all that fish-finessing can be seen clearly in this video preview footage of Jon's fish interacting with delighted passers-by... amazing stuff, Jon, great job!

Meanwhile, Jolanta 'Class of 2012' Jasiulionyte has just been interviewed about her work in Lithuania's largest national newspaper, who were especially interested in her recent cg interpretation of The Baltic Pixie...

... and Leo 'Class of 2012' Tsang has just had his graduate film Isle Of Cirrus 'hand-picked' by the people at Behance for showcasing on their Motion Graphics Served sister site.

Oh yes - and just incase you'd got to thinking that all your tutor had engaged with in Orlando was roller-coasters (as if!), take a look at the correspondence below:

"Dear Mr Gomm and Mr Reeves,

I am writing to you both to let you know that I found your presentation at the HETL conference to be inspirational. After much deliberation, I have now started to use blogging with my students at the University of Bedfordshire Business School.  Your presentation inspired me to do this. I will continue to follow your work with interest..."

Job done! :D  But, lest anyone forget, Tony and I were talking about your blogs and your creative community!  And that's this edition's final word!

CGAA Misc: Behind the Scenes of ParaNorman

This particular video  shows genuine approaches within traditional media as well as CG pipeline. Lots of inspiration for generating styles, coming up with unique textures, shape animations and so on!

JJ Abrams To Direct Star Wars 7

For all of those who care... JJ Abrams has just confirmed he is to direct the new Star Wars movie - read more here.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

CGAA Alumni: Leo Tsang Gets Motion Graphics Served!

Motion Graphics Served is a curated showcase from the Behance network, wherein work is selected for inclusion by industry professionals.  Congratulations then, to Leo 'Class of 2012' Tsang, whose graduating work, Isle of Cirrus was featured recently.

CGAA Alumni: Jolanta's Baltic Pixie Makes Headlines!

Some of you have already popped by CGAA 2012 graduate Jolanta Jasiulionyte's blog to congratulate her on her recent interview published in Lithuania's largest newspaper, Lietuvos Rytas.  For those of you who haven't, Jolanta was interviewed recently about her animation and character design work, with especial attention paid to Jolanta's The Baltic Pixie.   Congratulations, JJ - great stuff!

Friday, January 25, 2013

Playblast Podcast

Hey everyone hope you are doing well at Uni.
Today my friend Luke Clough gave me a podcast staring him and his friend Charlie Banks. They are Uni graduates from Bournemouth University and in this podcast they talked about their experience there.
From comparing how different it is from college, what inspired them to do animations, talking about what takes priorities while making an animated film, working together in a team, and much more.
Also as a bonus they talked about some animated shorts and used One More Beer as an example of being very short in time yet really entertaining. They even analysed the film, wondering if it used incomplete character models.

Here's the link to their podcast here

and here is the animated short One More Beer here
One More Beer! from pedro conti on Vimeo.

If you like Playblast Podcast then let then know by sending comments to their page here and maybe give them some subjects that you want them to talk about.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Reminder: Student Surveys Need Your Feedback

This is just a reminder to all year groups in regard to the importance of completing your respective Student surveys.  I know some of you may have completed it but maybe not left a 'done it' post on one of the previous posts.  If you have completed the survey already, but not told me, could you leave a 'done it' here, just so I can stop pestering you!  If you are yet to complete your survey, this is me just giving you another gentle prod.  Remember - your survey login details have been sent to your ucreative accounts, so you'll need to check there first to get started.  Many thanks - and remember, this is your opportunity to help shape how the University does things in the future.

FAO CGAA Yr 3: Good Luck & Congratulations - Your Dissertations Completed!

I just wanted to say best of luck for tomorrow's dissertation hand-in - and congratulations on completing this big challenging chunk of your undergraduate experience.  Ensure you celebrate in style and enjoy your dissertation-free weekend.  It's back to the grindstone on Monday, but until then, relax, repair and recuperate.  You can all be very proud of yourselves - it's a big achievement! Well done! :)

Lift - Marc Isaacs

A friend sent me a link to this short and within minutes I had fallen in love with it. A superb example of how short film can turn the mundanity of human life into an engrossing and moving narrative.

Filmmaker Marc Isaacs sets himself up in a London tower block lift. The residents come to trust him and reveal the things that matter to them creating a humorous and moving portrait of a vertical community.

I know it is a 20 minute short about people in lifts, but please watch it, you will not be dissapointed.

Extremely Rare Color Photography from the early 1900's