Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Mea Culpa and a different start.


Having trashed the earlier project, and being extremely disappointed with my failure to succeed, I want to try and pin point some of the main failures, especially those where I know I should have succeeded. I enter this project with a different mind frame, as the future has brightened up a bit, clearing up the many clouds in my mind that impede a logical and organized work ethic. Last project was highly cut up for me, with the Christmas break not acting as I had intended. Rather than acting as an occasion to do more work, it acted as a break and a strong diverter to my ambitions. Thankfully this project will be done in one streak, which should allow me to concentrate fully on the given task. Though I am listening to Je ne regrette rien from Edith Piaf, it is not what I am thinking and only the success of the next project interests me today.

I would say that a lack of motivation, added to a lack of organization, was the main reason for the debacle of Unit 3. I have resolved myself to using time tables and lists more often during this unit and the following. A clear repartition of the different tasks assigned to me, with a useful chronology of importance should help me avoid the lack of focus sadly characteristic of my work method.

My computer on the way to being fixed should lighten up the load of work I had to do during one day at university, and will enable me to focus after work and on week ends on the academic work, an aspect I had relegated to a less than important secondary role. Though it stays secondary in opposition to my art, it will now receive the same amount of effort.


Now on to the current project, for which I am, I must say, highly motivated. The brief while being very intense seems to me to allow a bit more freedom of choice as to where the story must go. My given story tools are:

Prop: Fire Extinguisher

Set: Joke Shop

Character: Trapeze Artist

A very interesting mix and ideas have been cogitating in my head for about a week now. I will write and play around with my ideas for this week and the next, with hopefully a clear idea of the main characters and their actions should be clear for the next weeks.  The story will still be worked on until the end, but I wish to focus on perfecting it. As was said before, characters direct the story, and I wish to give my characters a profound set of characteristic. The time given, 1 minute, is short, but if at least the public is aware in the Art Of publication of their traits, the story becomes that much more comprehensible. Yet playing around with the character’s stories will bring up some brain storming which can only help the story and their respective behaviour. Bill Johnson on his text on Character and Story says that “dynamic characters promise to take a story's audience on a journey. The key issue to understand is that it is because characters in stories act out to resolution and fulfilment issues of human need that they engage the attention of an audience”  My main concern regarding the depth of my characters is related to my idea for my first story.

I wish to create a short and quick story involving some children playing around with material from the joke shop. Yet I see it as an animated short rather than a resume for a grander tale. Though the characters will have depth and personality, I still am in the process of finding a way of depicting that on screen. Their emotions will represent their personality. What will be lacking, at least as I see it now, is a strong sense of a back story. There is as of now no clear reason why they do what they do apart from simply childish mischief, the cause, and everything that results, the effect. Yet I am supposing this will be enough for a short animation.


I will need a list to define my main objectives and I will update this list every week as my priorities evolve and work realized.

In order of priority:

·        Story Conception

o       Establishing the main series of events and their consequences.
o       Establishing the setting, the time of day, the weather.
o       Write down the full story as a resume of the animation.
o       Write down the story as if for an animator.
o       Finish storyboard.

·        Character Design
o       Characters create story.
o       Define main characters.
o       Define their roles and attitudes.
o       Identify physical representation of their psychological attributes.
o       Do the necessary research on different characters.
o       Define background and aptitudes.
o       Emphasize on the inter-relationship and interaction of the characters.
o       Character’s goals.
o       Decide on colour range.
o       Origins and looks.
o       Design Characters.

·        Set Design
o       Decide on location.
o       Reflect on influence of set on characters.
o       Evaluate the amount of symmetry between set and characters.
o       Decide on colour range, reflecting characters.
o       Research different architectural styles.
o       Settle on influence.
o       Identify the epoch the film will be based on.

·        Soundtrack
o       What soundtrack to use.
o       Decide on mood and atmosphere of the animation.
o       Reflect on which sounds to use.
o       Identify the necessary sounds to the excessive ones.

·        Academic Writing
o       Put considerably more effort in writing the film reviews.
o       Start research on essay early enough.
o       No procrastination.


As I said earlier, this is list is neither final nor exhaustive. It is here to help me stay true to me objectives, while trying to be as profound as possible. My next post will include some story parts I have written down over the past week. They are quick notes, written on a train, in a café, on my bed, sometimes on my desk, etc.