Class 7 Project 08/28/10: Just finished thumbnails for the entire short! That really helped me work out some minor kinks... This'll help a lot for the story meeting! 08/23/10: Co-Director Aidan Martin and I have agreed on a story outline we both like! Will be scheduling that polishing short meeting VERY SOON!! 08/17/10: Class is BACK IN SESSION! A few refinements need to be made on the newest pitch, and then an in depth, polishing story meeting (hopefully in the next week or two)

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Concept Art: Hallway of Marmorsaal Mici

The Marmorsaal Mici has an eerie, dilapidated feel to it. This concept is an early draft for a hallway leading into the theater. In this version, the roof opens to a starry sky.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Inspiration Sketch: The Hat

This is just an inspiration sketch I whipped up to convey, more than anything, Orsini's flourishing movements.

Hope you like!


Saturday, August 21, 2010

Another Orsini Concept

This is an older concept I found on my computer tonight. It's pretty far off from where Orsini is now, but it's a sorta fun design I thought I'd share.

I've been working on a teaser poster I hope to have up in the next couple of days.


Friday, August 20, 2010

Orsini: A few quick sketches

These are just a few quick concepts for Orsini, our hero character. Seth Henderson will be doing the final concepts, so these is more "mood sketches" than Orsini's actual look.


Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Orsini's Hiatus

Orsini the Nosferatu has been on vacation while I prepared another secret project. That other project, which is unrelated to Stage Fright, is now complete, and will be posted here after it premiers in a month's time. Woohoo!

Stage Fright will still be a bit slow going as I handle some other unrelated issues (one of the many being more thoroughly preparing my own reel), but this is a project I believe in 100%, and preproduction will continue at whatever tempo the team can manage!

More to come soon!


Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Update! (Finally)

Hey All!
I'm so sorry for the delay in updates. Most of the team are (is?) finishing up at Animation Mentor this term (and other team members have had other awesome developments in their lives!!), so we've been moving a little slowly over the past few months. Once Summer comes around, we should have a more productive schedule.

I did want to give a small hint at the film we'll be making: The film centers around Orsini, a relative of the infamous Count Orlok, who's ambitions are of a different nature to those of his forefather.

I'm super excited about the story [it has lots of twists and turns!], and again, I can't wait to post more updates in the upcoming months!!


Saturday, February 27, 2010

Friday, February 12, 2010

Welcome, AM Fans!

Just wanted to say a quick welcome to our newest followers, and to tell you what we're all about!

c7p is a group of enthusiastic artists putting together a short film. This blog will serve as a way for us to show pre-production and production work for the film during the process of making it.

We have our first official meeting tonight, so look for a lot of updates soon! And THANK YOU for visiting c7p!


Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Personal Project: Law School Rap Video

Hey everyone :)

Thought I'd post a little something up here, finally. This is a quick drawing I did using Photoshop for my boyfriend and his friend, for their "Law School Rap Video". Hahah, don't ask, but this illustration will be at the end of the video I think... Maybe if the video is sweet enough I can post that too once it's edited ;)


Sunday, February 7, 2010

AM Short Story Boards: Winsor

This is the first pass for the animatic of Winsor. It is currently running at 1 minute, and for the sake of the class, needs to drop down to 30 seconds.

Crits always appreciated!!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Embracing Irony

I have good luck when it comes to the big things – I have a beautiful, loving wife; a daughter that is healthy, happy, and the center of my universe; a job that I love. I grew up with loving parents and brothers who were also my best friends.

But when it comes to the small, stupid, simple things, I seem to have very ironically bad luck, particularly when it comes to animation.

When I was about 12, I designed a character called Monocle. He was a sort of satirical spoof on the X-Men character, Cyclops. He wasn’t exactly going to be the focal point of my creative endeavors, but he was certainly a character I thought people would enjoy. I developed a few (super simple) comics involving Monocle. He had a back-story, a team of heroes around him, and, most importantly to this story, a logo I was really proud of: A white circle surrounds a blocky “M” with a human eye in the middle. It had a sort of rune quality that I liked.
I developed this character for about five years. Then, in 2000, advertizing began for Monsters, Inc. The very first trailer featured exactly the same logo I had developed.
I would never have continued on with Monocle anyway. It was disappointing at the time, but life goes on.

2001 was the year I began development on a book that I am still developing, called Animal Control. The two main characters (for a long while, anyway) were named Jack and Dash. In around 2003, I found out that these same names were to be the names of Mr. Incredible’s sons in Pixar’s upcoming “The Incredibles.” Irony strikes again!

While attending Animation Mentor, I was developing a shot incorporating these two little “Star Wars”-esque drones. I had a whole pantomime bit using the gun-flaps of the drones almost like hands. It was coming along better than anything I’d done prior to this shot. Around that same time, I visited a friend at a major film studio, where he showed me a shot he was working on. It incorporated beings very similar to the ones I had made. Since I had signed an NDA, and despite the fact that I had created my drones before seeing the creatures created for this film, I was forced to scrap my idea in favor of something different – not necessarily better. Yet again, irony got the upper hand – and this time on a more professional level.

Recently, I’ve been developing a short film called Winsor. In the story, Winsor is a super villain who breaks into the headquarters of his arch-nemesis to steal his trademark jet-pack. I have been very happy with where the story has gone:
  • It started as a superhero getting suited up in a Gundam-style suit and crashing into his closed “garage” door.
  • It then changed to be specifically about the suiting-up bit. He was going to have trouble getting his helmet on.
  • The next iteration was the same story, except the helmet changed to be a malfunctioning jet-pack.
  • A friend pointed out that a super-villain was funnier than a superhero. So Winsor turned to evil. The pitch I sent to my mentor said this: “Winsor, a self-proclaimed evil genius, plans to destroy the headquarters of his arch nemesis by planting a bomb in the building. After flying in through an open skylight and planting the bomb, he accidentally traps himself inside with the bomb..”
  • My mentor addressed that he wasn’t “accomplishing” anything – he had no real goal except “get the jetpack on.” Giving him a “mission” might be more compelling. So he was now stealing the jetpack.
Through all of these iterations, I grew to love my story more and more.

I was recently pointed to another Animation Mentor student’s short film. In his short, a man sneaks into a top secret lab and steals a jetpack.

What are the odds?

My initial response was “I need to change his plight… stealing a jetpack has been done.” But the truth is, I really like my idea. At its heart, Winsor is not about stealing a jetpack. It’s about a super-villain wanting to vandalize and humiliate his arch-nemesis. It’s about trying your hardest at something, doing a pretty good job, and still getting shut down in the end – something I think all artists can relate to on one level or another.

I will not be changing Winsor’s story. I did not take the idea from anywhere else, yet through a process of story refinement, it’s ended up being similar to something someone else has done. My job now is to tell it in a new way, and to the best of my ability. Heck, James Cameron’s “Pocahontas in Space” proves that a good story is worth re-telling.

I now realize that these ironic happenings have been stepping stones. In the case of Monocle, it caused me to throw out something that was just taking up my time. In the case of the Incredibles character names, it caused me to rethink my characters and their necessity to the story. In the case of the drones, it caused me to develop a type of drone I’d never seen before.

In the case of Winsor, it has caused me to kick my brain up a notch to make something people will want to see. Even if they’ve seen it before, they haven’t seen it the way I’ll tell it.

I’m learning to embrace the irony.


Tuesday, February 2, 2010

AM Dialogue Planning: I still want you

It's week 5 of term 5 for me and we're starting on our dialogue piece. I've started planning out my shot focusing on the staging, layout and some major story telling poses. I wanted to convey this confident "bouncer" type character by having him be real stiff and rigid in the beginning and then at the end become frantic and weak in contrast. Hope it reads =)


AM Short Blocking: Opportunity Locked

This is where I am with the blocking at week 4.
A friend gave me a nice suggestion to make the ending work a little better.
When the trunk closes at the end the mom should get jolted forward which makes her fingers knock the keys from the little boys hand and the land on the floor, so she has absolutely no chance of getting out. It's a stronger ending and would be 2 or 3 extra shots without affecting what I've already animated.


AM Short Concept: Opportunity Locked

Initially the character I was thinking of for the Mother was very much "Mrs Incredible".
Then I found this image (below) on from an awesome artist whose work I love.

I can't find my sketches I did with the stewardess as inspiration.
But here are some early modeling stages.

To start with I liked the no nose idea and I was going to keep her eyes small and black.
I experimented with bigger eyes but I thought it looked to much like Bishop which is what I was trying to shy away from.

In the end I found a compromise I'm reasonably happy with (and I just plain ran out of time)


AM Short Story Boards: Opportunity Locked

This is the final story board for 'Opportunity Locked'.
A couple of beats have been cut out to keep it interesting and the camera angles and composition is taken very much from the live action reference.


AM Short reference: Opportunity Locked

This is my final pitch for my AM short, I shot it live action very quickly on a compact camera.
The story is based on a real life event when my wife let my my son hold the car keys when she was buckling him in to the car... whoops.
I found shooting it live action really helped get my camera angles and edits timed out well.


Monday, February 1, 2010

Concept Sketch: Winsor (Villain Version)

Here's the latest concept for Winsor. It's a huge leap from the original, but it fits much better with the story, I think. Critiques always appreciated!!!


Saturday, January 30, 2010

Concept Pitch: Winsor

Here's the "final" pitch for the short I'll be doing, called Winsor. Feedback is always welcome and greatly appreciated!


Friday, January 1, 2010

Concept Sketch: Winsor

This is the first concept for a new pitch, called Winsor. The story is about a superhero who is his own biggest fan. The gag is very similar to the one I have planned for "Fear No Obstacle," but I think due to Winsor's cockiness, it'll be funnier here.

Look for more on Winsor soon!