Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Today's work...

So i got started on some stills that are needed in the story that come up as flashes if imagery as the narrative goes on...

I have done some unfinished Yearbook photos of the carrot with crazy hairstyles- unfinished because i'm undecided on his name which needs to be in the images... and i also did the image of the casserole that pops up.

Tuesday, 28 February 2012

The extras

Having written the script and the storyboard, i pretty much know which characters i have to design now.. which i have done today- they're very rough though so i will probably definitely change all of them... there's something not quite right about them, but they offer a good chuckle... especially with the script i think it'll work well..

angry beetroot that gets hit on

a mean piece of sweetcorn
 bullied button mushroom
 cool cucumber- accidently looks a bit like Mr. T.
Tammy the Tomato

Sunday, 26 February 2012

Research & Influences

Searching for styles and inspiration regarding vegetables is surprisingly amusing and easy to come by.
And usually, different animations for this subject would have their own unique style.

I've found a couple of well known and lesser known animations that i've found inspiration in. Whether it's in humour content or style.

Now, I absolutely LOATHE the annoying orange. He's very annoying. But i just had to reference it as it's popular for a reason. Undeniably, the style is it's own. It uses a live action background, what looks like some naff google images. But it's the faces that attract people. The eyes are one eye doubled, to give it a really unsettling look, and the mouths looks a bit strange- i don't know if they're upside down.
The only thing i can commend is the originality of the aesthetics.

I found this video a few years ago. It's very amusing as it personifies vegetables, giving them a funny life each. The arms and legs for each character also allow them to further their actions and hold items. The facial expressions are typical to anime- which is something i don't want to go too near to. But the humour aspect and the way they talk about life as if they're living inspires me to apply this to my work.

Not alot to say about this video, other than the style really intrigued me. A live action/ photographic background with animated facial expressions ontop. They also have shadows under their eyes to give them a stuck-on feel. Interesting merge of techniques. I like.

I laugh everytime i watch this. I love the stupid faces they all have. I want my characters to have an endearing moronic touch. It gives an alternative idea or perspective of how vegetables might act when we're not around, say compared to the vegetable suicide video (3 videos above). Instead of being actually very intelligent, this animations suggests that they're actually just as stupid as we think they are. I love that so much.

Saturday, 25 February 2012


Having looked at my work from last week, i can only conclude that they have confirmed about how BORED i am with my project. 


NOT a good start!

The whole thing is it one style and it's all quite vectory and it's boring. And i like to get a bit more practical with my work. At least i'd like a project where i can be more practical.

Yesterday, on my walk back from uni with Joe, i came up with a new idea, a more exciting idea that will definitely engage me for a few months.

It's still on the line of food- mostly vegetables. But i was thinking of doing something along the lines of a comedy interview/documentary of an e.g. arrogant carrot and his superstar lifestyle (he thinks he's awesome because he helps people see in the dark).

I thought i could introduce his friends and characters aswell. 

So it'll just be him ranting on as if in an interview and then as he talks about memories about his life, it'll cut to the scene of various different things he's talking about- and i thought this would allow me to use different animation styles too so i wouldn't get bored e.g. some in digital and some with live action and rotascoping...

It's all going to be quite rude and crude as this carrot is a bit of a dick and thinks he gets all the babes and he'll reminise about his dating and veggie chat-up tactics. e.g. "I want your butt and my nuts squashed together"

I've done a few pages in my sketchbook to jot down ideas and try and show the feel of comedy i'm after...

I've based the carrot's design a lot on the Worms games. The character design for this game, i find is highly impressive. The facial proportions allow for extensive expression and exaggerated emotion. The fact that the worm's shape is similar to the carrot makes it easier to translate the inspiration. I don't plan to copy the design but have a recognisable influence.

I love the cut-out mouth when the worm is sideways- i definitely think that this is something i'll apply to the carrot's design.

butternut blow up doll 

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

Going on a tangent

i drew some faces on my vegetables... why do i feel like this has nothing yet everything to do with my current project??

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Gettin a bit crazy

So tonight i got a bit creative- only because i hate getting stuck into the computer so i thought id do something a little weird...

First i took some pictures of some veggies...

And then i even scanned some...

I was inspired to possibly use these objects to create the characters myself... so i might have a go with these, and the crazy scanned cross-sections were a bit kooky...

Whether i use these future possible characters or not, i may be able to use the vegetables textures for some of the collage material.

Monday, 20 February 2012

Another test

Now i think about it, this test is pretty similar to the last one...

Messin about

So since my last post, i've been playing around on Flash to get an idea of what i want the movement to be like for my animation... So far i've done one test which kind of mimics a stop-motion movement... it was easy to do and mistakes are easily masked by the twitchy and jolty movement...

here's the test- it kinda reminds me of a waitrose advert... with their food collage faces.. remember??
or is that just me making things up?? i'll try and find a picture if i can..

All the collage materials i found for this test were from the internet- they were just free stock textures. In the actual animation, i'd like to keep it to paper textures but since i dont have access to a scanner at the moment, i used the next best thing available to me.

It was all done in the same procedure, except i cut all the shapes out on photoshop, using my graphics tablet at the scissors :P

Is it possible??..

I've been a big fan of PES animations- they use different materials and objects to signify or replace real objects in their work. Although it's all stop-motion and pixelation, i have a feeling that my work with the intended collage style, might end up looking a bit like PES but in a 2-D digital form...


I'm having a bit of trouble figuring out how to move all my characters around when they're in a collaged style... but i might be getting ahead of myself as i'm behind schedule and havent even played around with the possibilities yet! Which i will do today. Promise.

Anyway, looking at these videos has given me inspiration to a new idea of how to move objects. I'm aware that the jumpy quality to the animations is a given when doing stop-motion due to the fact that the objects are live and being moved by hand. However, i still find it quite endearing and it has that hand-made-iness quality that i'm so fond of.

Maybe i can purposely try to inject this quality into my animations... this may not agree very well with Flash since it's so well-known for having that smooth "Flashy" feel... I may rebel against the the look and make my own now... Hmm...

Saturday, 11 February 2012


So while i've been procrastinating (cue sheepish face), i was on stumbleupon, and managed to stumble across this blog called Cooking Comically.

The whole idea behind this blog seemed really similar to my idea, but in the sense of being humorous, fun and a visual way of cooking. It's a really creative idea and it's similar to what i'm aiming for, but this one is in 2-D and well, not animated:

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Work Schedule

This is a few weeks overdue- should have done this at the beginning.
Better late than never though right?
But even better to be on time.
That is the reason for this work schedule.

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Style Searching...

So recently i've been stuck in a rut as i usually am at the beginning of every project- overwhelmed by the free choice of what to do.

But not today! Well... Not this late afternoon anyway, since i've only just been able to drag my miserable self out of bed to accept the fact that i really need to get stuck in.

So anyway, i thought a good place to start looking for a style may actually be in food illustration, as looking for a style through animations isn't extremely helpful for me. I found a couple of people whom i like the work of and am going to break down the reason why i like them, and see if i can take a bit from each to create my own niche. Clever eh? :P

Mark Ruffle- I thought these images he created are pretty much the basis of what you think of when I describe the project i'm doing. A follow-along recipe. You'll immediately think of hands and watching them in action, creating something. I love that you can tell what is being done in every picture, it seems to move by itself. However, in my work, i don't want hands to be in the animation if i can help it. As it clutters up the small frame i'm already going to work with. The simplicity of the pictures really appeals to me, but the vector look has been done quite a bit- including in my last work. So i'd probably try to avoid this.

Tado- They did work for Gola, such as bag designs, so this kind of style is really fashionable at the moment- not that i'm going for fashionable. But i'm in love with the bright complimentary colours, and it all looks really cute and happy. The only thing i think is drawing me in, is the fact it reminds me quite a lot of my own work, my doodles and the fact i shove a cute face on everything in sight. Again, something i'll try to avoid. I'm still not currently sure if i'm going to put faces on any the stuff i'm using in my animation. Maybe i should push the boat out a bit? Or keep true to my identity?.. Hmm..

Kristyna Litten- This also reminds me a bit of my work, the doodley style and the slightly wonky lines, with a hidden sense of order and calculation. It's still very different from mine though, it looks more quaint yet realistic, and has a nod towards children's books illustrations. Although something is attracting me, i'm not sure an animation in this style would be hugely eye-catching, with the soothing soft colour palette and the sketchy crayon lines..

Melvyn Evans- I love simple basic shapes, especially when they're wonky and not quite right, especially when they have that endearing off-perspective quality. I think that's something i may consider bringing to my work. I'm rubbish at perspective anyway so maybe that's just the ticket! Make it looks like i'm meant to be rubbish at drawing :P... Either way, this image is so pleasing to look at, without black outlines, the objects in the picture compliment each other. It's just so lovely :)

Stuart Holmes- Although i mentioned with the previous image how i loved the elimination of black lines, this current picture displays the reason when and why i love them also. It reminds me of a diagram, like those kooky animated demonstrations you'd get on a plane before you take-off, or the first few pages of the instruction manual of your printer. I love how precise it looks, and yeah, i'll say it again. That diagram feel. This is also a style i'll be looking at. I think an animation that moves away from my usual style and into diagrammy recipe How-To would be really effective. It would become less of a cutesy "Bake With Meeee!" and more of a DIY "Let's make a butch bookshelf".

Luella Wright- I like and dislike this image. Again, it's the fact it has no black lines, yes melikey. But it reminds me of the mini flash games i used to play when i was 9 on It's been done. But i can't help but stare at those sandwiches. They're like the previous image style, with more freedom... So like the work of Stuart Holmes & Melvyn Evans integrated. This is what it'd look like if their pictures mated. And i quite like it! The simple shapes even offer a sense of dimension which is enhanced by the simple block shading. Brilliant.

Hannah Carty- This is beautiful. This is actually the only thing i could find that was remotely close to my original style idea of collage. The experimentation work from my SS1 module gave me inspiration to continue the collage style i didn't have time for in this project. It's so clever! Carty has used what looks like a print from a carpet?! as the base of the cinnamon swirl, and cut outs from a hole punch and organically cut out pieces from magazines, possibly with a wood texture, and little white paper sprinkles. It really gives an alternative feel to the image, completely separate from any of the others i've shown on this post. A real hand-made, loved quality. Hopefully with inspiration from looking at all this different styles, I'll find my own niche.

Sunday, 5 February 2012

Statement of Intent

A more formal proposition of what my project intends to be:

I intend to produce an interactive follow-along recipe using 2-D digital animation. The format will be suitable so that it may later possibly develop to be a smart phone app. In this project, I will only produce one interactive animated recipe, in which the users can press buttons to go to the next/previous page. It will be a visual recipe, where the measurements are mostly by eye.

I will first be creating my designs using collaged materials, and eventually import these into Adobe Flash and use the different textures to animate with. It will offer an alternative and interesting aesthetic and hopefully be in it's own niche. Actionscript would then be programmed in for the interactive parts.

The formal submission date is 24th May.
I intend to have my project ready for hand-in a week before (17th May), so that any final details or last thoughts can be considered and the work can still be easily amended in time.