Professional Development – Business Card

The finalised designs for the front and back of my business card. The front is my logo without the font elements communicating something of my personality. the back holds the information matter and I decided to go for a very strong graphic approach as a contrast to the illustrative dominance of the front. This is an attempt to convey something of the breadth of my experience. I also felt strongly about including the drawing utensils of pen and pencils in some way to give a nod to the fact that I still use these tools as part of my process on a daily basis.

Animation Production Diary – What’s the collective noun for a group of ghosts?

The ghosts, as I call them, first appear in scene seven to correspond with the line; ‘…when she thought about the teenager she had been’. They represent an attempt to express a younger possible self, the adult looking back at herself with compassion, and as such a gateway to possible contentment. One of the ghosts will join the Melancholic Wife in the darkness in scene eleven as a symbol of the connection to this gateway out of the blackness so it felt important to keep them feeling light and unburdened by the weight of gravity. They needed to be instilled with a sense of carefree joy to contest the heavy, laden aspect of the dark thoughts.

 
My first ghost pencil test with subsequent digital inks.

A second spinning ghost, the pencil test for this was drawn as thumbnails in an A5 notebook as seen below with the next ghost.
 
An example of the pencil thumbnails for the ghosts along with an inked test of a ghost rising with a slight turn then settling.
All of these ghosts were combined for scene seven with the timings shifted slightly on the same actions to differentiate, the ghost rising animation was re-used the most because of it’s various, differing actions and longer length.
The finished scene with layers of ghosts added in. I changed the opacity on a downward scale from the front to the back of the scene.

Animation Production Diary – Short but nevertheless important

There are a few scenes dotted through the animatic that could be described as very short and scenes five and six would fall under that category, comprising a total of three seconds all together. Scene five is a simple step into the ‘ghost room’ and scene six follows it up with a short glance up from our protagonist as she spots the ghosts.

While short they are important, scene six bridges the story from the frantic run that preceded it to the more serene atmosphere of the ‘ghost room’. I felt it important to have her step even once, rather than just have a more easily completed hold, to represent the dissipation of energy from the mad dash.

One small step for the Melancholic Wife…

The glance upwards then has to communicate an emotional shift, I wanted to portray a graceful arc to her movement and emphasise the flow of her hair to preface the floating light tone of the dancing ghosts who are about to appear on screen. I learned the importance here of not underestimating any scene no matter the length and its potential to keep a story continuum on track.

This scene is also the first and only real close-up of the character so I really wanted to communicate her poise and character as much as possible.

Professional Development Logos

The final version of my designed logo, trying to communicate on both a strong graphic front with the block colour pen and an illustrative front with the line-work portrait. The integration of pen and portrait came from research into Saul Bass design and his imaginative and clear use of graphic elements interacting with one another in unusual ways.

Sound Holds the Distance Travelled – Storyboards

Sound Holds the Distance Travelled is the title of the short animated film I’m creating in collaboration with writer and artist Sadhbh Lawlor as part of my BA (Hons) Animation studies at Colaiste Dhulaigh. It is a three minute film based on Episode Five of the Melancholic Wife and her Perpetrating Husband comic series that we co-created.

Here is a link to the animatic for the film and the storyboards are displayed below.

 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Sequence One

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Sequence Two

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Sequence Three

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Sequence Four

 

The production process blog can be found here.

Animation Production Diary – They need to look like lady hands

The action in scene ten involves a close up of the Melancholic Wife reaching up to try and bring a ghost with her as she is being pulled down. The ghost represents a positive memory of her teenage self, an instance not weighted down by the same troubles as her adult self, and the effort to carry it with her into the darkness is an attempt to accept this positive aspect fully into herself. As such I feel the movement needs to be gentle, soft and kind. She is not grabbing the ghost, she moves to embrace it and ask for her help.

For reference I took a video of my own hands but of course they need to look like a woman’s hands so the theme of this scene was softness all round.

Hands
Ghost
Both together

Animation Production Diary – The wind in her hair

Scene twenty two of the film,  the calm after the pyrotechnic storm was another scene I choose to tackle early. The Melancholic Wife’s torso is stationary for the most part so it represented an opportunity to focus on animating a wave, a fundamental animation principle, in her hair. The flow of the movement is also a first exploration of animation timing for the film. I was able to achieve a balanced flow in the animatic and it is my hope and intention to carry this over as much as possible into the animated movement.