Remember us? Yeah, we know, we have been VERY M.I.A. We started this blog & website while I was on winter hiatus. Reality has thus commenced again for both of us, while our passion projects continue to consume our "outside lives." So please excuse the radio silence, I normally am extremely talkative!
Mentioning passion projects, I have decided to give you a brief look into one of mine today (Maris will follow suit soon as well!). About a month ago I turned 25. To me the number kind of hits hard, solidifying my apparent denial of adulthood. To try and unpack my anxiety, I decided to seep deeper into mulling over it by making a stop-motion animation.
Link to which is below:
I have received lovely feedback about this piece and most comments are followed with "How long did that take you?" For this specific animation, it was a month of prep and actual animation. While I love the satisfaction of animating objects - spending an hour hunched over, moving pieces bit-by-bit for a 10 second scene, I found my passion lies in making the actual THINGS that come to life.
And so for this post (and many that will follow) I wanted to briefly show you just how much prep goes into these little pieces. I have saved what I have could from this video (at times pieces get destroyed through the process through hot glue or some other adhesive or paint, etc. or frankly I forget where I stored them because I am a hoarder). So below I have compiled a "sampling" of what I made for this animation in a trendy collage.
It's kind of like a fun I-Spy picture, right? As you can tell, stop motion animation not only calls for small objects, but multiple versions of one small object.
For example, I made different size "flames" for the birthday cake, replacing them one by one so the flame would grow bigger and then smaller. These were attached to toothpicks for the match. I had made small holes the width of the toothpick before I baked the clay "25" in the oven so I could easily replace the candles when animating by dropping them into the numbers instead of gluing or stabbing.
For the ones a little bit more interested in the process, here's an in-depth description of one of my favorite scenes: the remote control segment.
For that I took a picture of my hand holding an object similar in size to a remote control (in this case, an iPhone). I took several pictures of my hand as it presses down on the "rewind" button and comes back up. I printed these out, traced the outline using a light box (Thanks Graphics Department!) and copied the images multiple times.
I then individually colored and cut the hands. Originally I was just going to color in new nail colors, but found when I photo-copied the hands with colored in skin color, the copies looked sickly.
There are 5 sets of hands for each nail color. What I have learned from past experiences is to mark the sequence of any cut-paper replacement stop motion with numbers on the back. (Picture the horror of cutting out what seem like a billion pieces and accidentally dropping them all - also the variations are so slight that it sometimes is hard to tell which one follows the last).
For the physical animation process, I replaced the hands individually and took a picture, creating the pushing down effect. Viola!
Now I have only mentioned replacement animation from the two examples above. But trust me, I doubt you want a play-by-play of the claymation process. It would sound something like this "I took a photo, moved the hand one tiny movement to the right, took another photo, moved the hand again one tiny movement..." and so forth. But below I have attached some other prep photos I have done to show you the process (roll mouse over the photos for extra info!) Enjoy! And if you have any questions, feel free to ask.