Saturday, 22 January 2011

Café Crawl Saturday

Today has been spent drawing and colouring. These are no doubt useful practices for an animator.

First of all, my classmates and close friends, Christina and Richard, and myself had a Café Crawl Drawing Day. To make up for the distinct lack of animation-specific life drawing classes on our course, drawing people sneakily out and about is usually the subsititute, so I suggested a café crawl. We only managed to go to two cafés today (slightly longer drawings than anticipated. On my part anyway) but next time I'm sure we'll manage more. There is a silly number of cafés bunched together around Middle Meadow Walk in Edinburgh so venues are easy enough (there are two Starbucks literally within a minute's walk of each other there). One of my drawings isn't finished yet as the some of the pens I was using ran out halfway through so I shall have to purchase new ones in order to complete it, but there is one that I'm rather pleased with.
Christina, drawn with 6-colour pencil, 22/01/11
I can't decide whether it's sort of cheating to use a pencil with a lead that's split into six different colours, but at the same time it sort of leaves the final result of the drawing up to chance, which I like. Sometimes there's a budding Dadaist within me trying to get out. Either way, methinks Café Crawl Saturday shall have to become a regular thing. It's nice to take a break from film work whilst still doing something productive that will help the production in some way, shape or form.

Now it's back to colouring for my film. I've got two shots cleaned up and scanned which I'm rather excited about, so now it comes to colouring them to see how my desired look will appear onscreen. Here's a frame from Shot 9, a lovely close up of Jay looking a little unconvinced:
In the end, I want the shading to be sort of scruffy looking and a little jittery, whilst the backgrounds will be textured to avoid everything from becoming flat. Unless that's the look you're going for, a flat appearance is a real danger with 2D hand-drawn coloured frames. I'm debating whether the shading needs to be more obvious or not. There's a very fine line, I'm finding, where the shading can be a little subtle one minute and then overpowering the next. This is a problem on the skin in particular.  A few more hours messing around is needed, methinks. It is exciting/a relief to start to see some of the drawings looking complete; it makes me feel like my film will come together like it's formed in my head.

I have also just received a present which made me smile. We all need inspiration, don't we? Well, HMV have been capitalising on this for a few years now with their 'My Inspiration' posters. You know the ones: famous musician/actor/filmmaker is pictured with a quote from something which inspires them. They're dotted all over any HMV store you care to look in. Well, one of my best friends, Creative Writing and Film Studies graduate Hayley Charlesworth (who shall almost always be referred to as Charlesworth) has made one for me and it has made me very inspired:
I'm very tempted to print it out and stick it on my wall/studio space but a part of me wonders whether this would be seen as cheeky seen as I'm not famous yet. Having said that, I can be purchased on the HMV website. When I was in the Hallé Youth Choir, I took part in a recording of Elgar's The Dream of Gerontius (which has since won a Classic FM award for Best Choral Performance - oh yes, I'm very proud of us) and the CD can be bought here. Buy it if you care to. It's very good, but I am rather biased.

And finally, speaking of Journey inspiring me, it is the former lead singer of Journey's birthday today: Steve Perry, aka 'The Voice' (no, not you Russell Watson). I have a book of codeword puzzles that has one for everyday this year and today's contained the word 'journeys'. It's almost like it knows. Anywho, to celebrate I've been listening to Journey and Steve Perry's solo stuff all day (like I need a reason anyway) and to finish, here's a GIF of the man himself from the infamous Separate Ways (Worlds Apart) video:
The best checkered shirt dance you'll ever see.


  1. T'was a good, productive day yesterday! *thumb*

  2. @Christina F.
    Like I say, methinks I'm gonna make Café Crawl Saturday a regular thing. At least it'll get me out of my flat...