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Post With The Most 29/02/2016

Welcome to the latest edition of the Computer Animation Arts 'Post With The Most'. Part progress report, part celebration, the PWTM is a window into our creative community and month-by-month insight into what's keeping us busy.

First up, a selection of work from the year one project entitled From Script To Screen, which challenged first years to derive an idea for an animated short from three randomly selected components (character/environment/prop) and then prepare their idea for the screen.  There is magic to this project, the way in which seemingly incongruous constellations of people, things and places suddenly align to form autonomous stories; the way students' initial disappointment at their randomised selections turns into pleasure as their story ingredients emulsify into complete and compelling stories.

The Seers character sheet #1

The Seers character sheet #2

Wendy Winter character sketch

The Patissier turnaround

Laoshu storyboard panels #1

Laoshu storyboard panels #2

Laoshu storyboard panels #3

Laoshu storyboard panels #4

The Window Cleaner storyboard #1

The Window Cleaner storyboard #1

Temple developmental thumbnails #1

Temple developmental thumbnails #2

Pet Shop Owner developmental thumbnails

The taxidermist's son developmental thumbnails

The Year 2 Adaptation unit is subdivided into two separate briefs, the first of which is an infographic project.  Students were given just twenty-four hours to come up with and pitch their ideas for their respective infographics - and then four weeks to produce it!

Charlie Serafini - The A to Z of Customer Service

Dan Reason - A Beginner's Guide To Failure

Julien Van Wallendael - Signs You Are Watching A Film By...

Jack White - 10 Steps To Becoming Less Of A Burden On Society

The second half of the Adaptation unit sees our year 2 students choosing an existing source to transcribe into a CG outcome.  Choices range from short stories, poems and ballets - even genres of pop music and types of killer disease are being personified as characters!

The Astrologer / Character development

The Astrologer / Pencil test

The Astrologer / modelling the Astrologer

Jack White

The Sound Collector / The Sound Collector character development #1

The Sound Collector / The Sound Collector character development #2

Le Dormeur du Val / Concept development

Le Dormeur du Val / Character development #1

Le Dormeur du Val / Character development #2

Le Dormeur du Val / Character development #3

Personifying genres of music / Pop developmental sketches

Personifying genres of music / Metal developmental sketches

Le festin de l'araignee / The Butterfly concept painting

Le festin de l'araignee / The Mantis concept painting

Meanwhile, Year 3 continue work on their ambitious year long projects: original stories and complex models abound, with all the long hours, red-eyes and aching wrists so necessitated.  It was Thomas Edison who said that genius was one percent inspiration, ninety-nine percent perspiration.  Edison could just have easily been talking about life on Computer Animation Arts! Enjoy this smattering of updates from our year threes and their respective labours of love.

The Day Dreamer / concept painting #1

The Day Dreamer / concept painting #2

The Day Dreamer / concept painting #3

The Day Dreamer / concept painting #4

Rob-O-Matic advertisment

Elements Academy / Hydrogen model

Elements Academy / Iron rigging demonstration

Captain Wonder / New York test render

Captain Wonder / Captain Wonder model

Car production art

The Son's bedroom concept painting

The Mother expression sheet

Ant Faulkner

Skye / Testing Skye's rig / expressions #1

Skye / Testing Skye's rig / expressions #2

Skye / Testing Skye's rig / expressions #3

Skye's rig demonstration video

Ruby Newland

The Taxonomy Of Laughs / The 'Cheeky Laugh' model

The Taxonomy Of Laughs / Texturing 'The Snorter' model #1

The Taxonomy Of Laughs / Texturing 'The Snorter' model #2

The Taxonomy Of Laughs / 'The Snorter' model

What Would Meredith Do?/ Test render #1

What Would Meredith Do?/ Test render #2

What Would Meredith Do? / Test render #3

Espial / Test render #1

Espial / Test render #2

Espial / Test render #3

Espial / Test render #4

Sukhvinder Ghai

The Phantom Tollbooth teaser storyboard panel #1

The Phantom Tollbooth teaser storyboard panel #2

The Phantom Tollbooth teaser storyboard panel #3

The Phantom Tollbooth teaser storyboard panel #4

Heidi Grover

Legends Of Grimm / The Beast model (wip)

Legends Of Grimm / The Bear Prince model (wip)

The Bog Goblin / Sally updated textures

The Bog Goblin / Kitchen render layer composites

Last month's PWTM profiled the MASK project - a collaboration between recent CAA graduates and young artists in Kenya.  Next month's PWTM will showcase the resulting exhibition that begins on March 14th. Until then take look at what CAA grads Emily Clarkson, Samantha Niemczyk, Vikki Kerslake, Steven Payne, Nat Urwin and Ethan Shilling have been up to since we last checked in.  You can follow their progress at the official CAA/MASK collaboration blog.

Steven Payne & Fahima Munene 

Lamu inhabitants test render

Ethan Shilling & Louis Tamlyn

Emily Cronin & Churchill Ongere

Sam Niemczyk & Edwin Wainaina

Not content with one collaboration, CAA has just embarked on another bold, interdisciplinary adventure!  An Orchestra Network for Europe – ONE - is a distinctive network of classical symphony orchestras initiated by Orchestre de Picardie in 2003. Since 2005, it has received support from the European Union under the Culture Programme for 4 cultural projects. Its successive periods of activity have been called ONE, ONE - a new dimension, ONE step further and from June 2011 to 2015 ONE goes places. In 2010, under the title ONE is more, it prepared an application under the Creative Europe programme of the EU. For this bid, the University for the Creative Arts joined the partnership.

UCA was invited to participate in ONE following the success of a previous European-funded project - ACT (A Common Territory) - which saw staff, students and alumni from UCA's Computer Animation Arts, Creative Arts For Theatre Film, Television Productionand Graphic Design: Visual Communication collaborate with orchestras, performers and performances in France and in the UK. Following the success of our La création du monde animation project, ONE has asked the creative community of CAA to create an animation to accompany live concert performances of Benjamin Britten's Young Person's Guide To The Orchestra.

Britten's composition takes its listener on a tour of the instruments comprising an orchestra.  It's early days in terms of developing our response to Britten's piece, but we do know we want to treat the orchestra like a 'Kingdom of Sound', its instrument groupings as cities, and the instruments themselves as districts or zones within those cities. We want the animation to be filmic and immersive, conveying a real sense of distance traveled and spaces explored.

To kick start the art direction for this ambitious project, we're asking the CAA community to generate digital speed paints in response to YPGTTO's fifteen variations.  The students were briefed, and the first speed paint challenges launched here on the CAA Group blog.  I've included here a small sample of the visions already conjured by the imaginations of our students and alumni - more will surely follow!

Cat Barber 

Dee Crisbacher

Sam Cannon

Eva Pinnington

Dee Crisbacher

Julien Van Wallendael

Vlad Yankov

The Final Word...

“The difference between try and triumph is just a little umph!” Marvin Phillips


  1. Hey, Mark Davies here from Nexus Productions, and friend of UCA. There's some quality work in this edition of PWTM! My three standouts are--Dan Reason's Guide to Failure, which had a great personality and sense of humour to it. Any more boil than this and your viewer might start to get annoyed, plus I suspect you enjoy the work of Don Hertzfeld, but you walked a fine line well and I enjoyed watching it. Next was Julien Van Wallendael's Film piece-- such clear and iconic design here-- each image communicated your 'clues' perfectly. And finally Ant Faulkner's rigging reel shows off a really well made facial rig-- companies recruiting junior rigging talent won't need to see much more than this, so I hope you like rigging! Be sure to show off your topology as well, as it will be more clear what your thinking was when modelling the head.

    Well done to everyone!

    1. Mark! :) Thanks so much for dropping by, and for the kind words too. You've just made some students very happy!

    2. Hey Mark, I'm really glad that you liked it! I'll take on board on what you said about the topology too and get my that updated for my technical showreel in the future. Thankyou :)


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