31 Jul 2012

Kernowland in Erthwurld - stop motion animation film pilot

Kernowland in Erthwurld - stop motion animation film pilot to be made by director, Zeke Ares
Jack Trelawny and Zeke Ares (stop motion animation film-maker)
This is exciting news... a film pilot for Kernowland in Erthwurld!
Zeke Ares at work on a film
A short while ago I was invited to attend a meeting in Stoke-on-Trent with Zeke Ares, a graduate of the Staffordshire University Stop Motion Animation and Puppet-making course (more below).
I had recently visited Zeke's son's school, John Baskeyfield Primary, and signed a Kernowland 1 The Crystal Pool book for him. This led to Zeke contacting me with a view to creating a pilot for a stop motion animation film based on my Kernowland in Erthwurld series of books. 'Stop motion animation' is the technique used for making films like Wallace and Gromit.
We had an initial meeting and decided that a stop motion animation film pilot would be the first step to arranging funding for the main film or films. An important consideration was a working title for the film. Since Kernowland is a tiny kingdom in a wider imaginary world called, ERTHWURLD, we decided on that as the title. That would allow the possibility for further films set in Erthwurld at a later date.
Once completed, the ERTHWURLD film pilot will be submitted to various bodies and organisations, such as the National Lottery and film and TV companies, with a view to arranging the funding to move forward with the project. Everyone involved has got fingers - and everything else - crossed that we can get the funding after the pilot is finished.

It's been great fun learning about the film-making process...

After Zeke had read the start of the story to get ideas for the characters, plot, dialogue, and settings, he could start making some rough sketches. He then sent me the sketches and asked me lots of questions so that he could make some more detailed drawings to pass on to the storyboard artist. The pictures below, by artist Joel Townsend, show the storyboard Shots 6, 7, and 8, drawn for Zeke's short Degree Show film, Surge.
The next pictures show some of Zeke's work making the sets and puppets for the Surge stop motion animation film. It takes a long time to design and make everything before filming can start.

Stop Motion Animation and Puppet-making course at Staffordshire University

If you - or someone you know - are interested in an animation film-making career, here is a little bit more information about the Stop Motion Animation and Puppet-making course at Staffordshire University...
It is 'the country's only purely Stop Motion Animation course'. It is 'at the front of the development of new technologies for the Stop Motion industry'. It offers 'a series of specialist lectures, demonstrations and seminars, introducing students to professional stop-frame animation, puppetry, camera, lighting and editing. Built on core animation principles you will develop a series of pilots and shorts for television'.

More about the Staffordshire University Animation Department from the university website...

Our animation department specialises in supporting Animation, 3-D Character Animation, Stop-Motion and Puppet Making and Visual Effects. We are constantly advancing our facilities and equipment to keep us at the fore of the animation and film effects industry. This ensures that our students are competent in practical aspects of production and confident working with new technologies, which will become of increasing importance as they enter the employment sector.

Stop Motion Studios 
These rooms are fully equipped with camera rigs, lighting kits and computers with Stop Motion Pro HD software for frame by frame capturing.
Animation Studio 
The animation studio has a range of facilities to suit Animation students in a range of disciplines. We have:- line testing stations equipped with cameras and lighting, light boxes, PC’s (with Toonboom, Photoshop, After Effects, Motion builder, Mud Box and Word Processing software) and Mac Pro computers (with Maya, Corel Painter, Photoshop CS5, ToonBoom Studio Pro, Harmony, Final Cut Pro, iMovie, iDVD, Combustion, Nuke and Microsoft Office). The area is fully supported by technicians with practical working knowledge of the software and the animation industry.

CGI Workshop
This room is the centre of post-production in the animation department boasting a number of Apple edit suites and relevant animation software. Our Mac Pro. stations support – Nuke, Maya and Motion capture, ToonBoom, Final Cut Studio 6, Photoshop CS5 Suite, Storyboard, Combustion and Corel Paint. The CGI workshop supports post-production teaching hosted by a qualified technician and/or media practitioners and is open access for students preparing their own projects.

Chroma Green Room
With the advancement of CGI and computer animation in recent years the Media Centre has a Motion Capture suit for student use. The Chroma Green room supports the filming of Motion Capture. We have a chroma green infinity wall and professional lighting rig for students to film themselves interacting with animated characters.

I'll post more about the ERTHWURLD film project on the Blog as soon as there is some news to report.

For more on funding for films, see: British Film Institute


See you next time in the Story House.

Happy writing... and reading!


No comments:

Post a Comment