When I was applying for uni in 2003, I dreamt of one day working for Pixar, drawing cute characters and animating works of awesomeness. I was in awe of how their amazing graphics came to life.
Almost ten years later, I didn’t end up pursing my animation dream, but my that’s OK! My awe for the talented individuals that make animation into reality will never fade. I went to uni with a bunch of super talented people who had concepts and drawings to be envied. It was inspiring, and it was so cool to watch how they developed their ideas from paper to screen. It made me appreciate all the intricate details and hours devoted to animation.
When I applied for uni it was by interview and portfolio. And in my film reel I had one semi-animated film, which was my favourite. It was called Cyclic and it was shots of things in motion (more accurately, repetitive spirals). I mostly had live footage but I had one scene where I did stop motion. My bestie worked at a restaurant and had access to a box full of wine corks. I spent half a day moving the little corks to form a spiral and do a little jig. They did a jig mainly because I accidentally knocked some of them in the process. I loved this film and I swear it was the reason I got into the school.
The other week, hubby and I made a happy birthday stop motion video message for his mum. I cut out a bunch of letters from a magazine and even found two little cute stick people that were meant to be us. We set up my iPhone on a tripod over the couch, played Flight of the Conchords and started filming. We got the message all laid out and we wanted to make them dance. But the thing is, Flight of Conchords is way too funny so about halfway through the dancing shot we both laughed and the letters scattered! Instead of starting again, hubby suggested we just make the letters “explode” and so we did. Ah good fun.
I’m not sure when my appreciation for all things stop motion began, but I love stumbling across animations. I will always be in awe at just how much time and effort is put in. From the lighting, set design to watching the little characters dance, I can’t help but go “wow!”
Here are two different examples of my favourite stop motion shorts at the moment. The first (above) is from Wendy’s Lookbook. Yes it’s about shoes, but it’s pretty darling. And naturally the other (below) is the latest Taylor Swift video. It was the inspiration for the birthday message (the concept of stop animation, not the title). Imagine all the work that was put in!