Saturday, October 14, 2006


Yay.... this week was good. I feel like I've made some nice progress, after changing more stuff of course. The biggest change is that I'm no longer using photo collages backgrounds. Instead, all the backgrounds will be miniature sets, whether or not the scene contains stop-motion animation. This is the set for the bakery basement.

So far it's just some walls and a staircase, but I'm very happy with it. It's not goin to look completely really and I'm not going to hide the fact that it's made from cardboard and paper. I think that will add to the overall cheeziness of the movie. I've also recorded the voices of my primary actors!

Javan, Jamie, Lee - you rock!! They did an amazing job and actually made my stupid script entertaining. In addition to providing the voices of their characters, they will also lend their faces. I'll be taking a ton of photos of them so I can make them into digital photo cut-out puppets. That should be happening within the next week. I finally feel like I'm working and making progress, and that feels great. This week will be the week from hell though... too much to do! I really really want to get cracking on the armature(s) because I finally have all my supplies, but that's not priority. Before I tackle any monster animation scenes I'm going to refine the look of the film while animating the opening sequence in the basement. I'm still not positive of what look I'm going for. I thought I knew but then I realized that I was trying for way too naturalistic of a look... and that doesn't make sense for animation, especially photo cut-out animation. It might as well shoot it on video. Live-action actually was part of the film at one point, and I think that idea was still was hanging out in part of my brain. I've finally evicted the last notion that my film needs to feel "real," and now know that I want a more stylized look. It's a making a parody monster B-movie, so it needs to be fun and cheesy.

Monday, October 02, 2006


I probably mentioned in an earlier post that I wanted to make a ball and socket armature. I tried doing this using jewelry barbells and some very cheap armature parts. After a lot of experimenting and head scratching I decided that half-assing a ball and socket armature probably isn't the best idea. I just don't know enough about making one and I don't have easy access to the appropriate machines nor the knowledge to use them. I really really want to machine my own armatures one day, but I don't think right now is the best time to figure that one out. I’ve got a lot on my plate already! Instead, I've decided to go with what I know best - a wire armature. I did some experimenting this weekend and made two half armatures using different methods. The first uses a whole lot of plumber's epoxy and is a little heavy but very sturdy. The biggest downside is that if a wire were to break it would be very difficult to fix. The next one has a head and rib block made from bundles of brass tubing. It's lighter, but I don't think it's as sturdy. After some brainstorming I think I have a pretty good armature design that would have all the qualities I'm looking for, especially the fixable part.

New Title!

"Day of the Dough"

Is that B-movie enough for you? The story is changing again too... slightly. Hopefully it will be "set" this week so I can record my audio and make final storyboards. I hope to begin the cut-out animation by November. I have so much pre-production work to do... it scares me a little seeing my classmates ready to animate. But once I have all my puppets (both real and digital) done animation should go at a steady pace for me. No cleaning up or coloring! I just need to get past this pre-production hump.