A pilot that I worked on as a Clean-Up Artist has just won two awards from Screen Nova Scotia, taking both Best Aniamted Series, and the DANS Award for Outstanding Achievement in Animation! I'm stoked to have gotten to work on a project that managed to get that level of recognition, and I'm excited to see where the project will go from here. I would love the opportunity to work on it again once I'm back in Canada.
Powered by a surge in views on Grave Mistake, my YouTube channel has crossed the 10,000 subscriber mark! This is an awesome achievement that I honestly never thought I'd get to hit! In celebration, I made a short video, bringing back the character that really did the heavy lifting in getting my channel to this point, using original animation assets and backgrounds from Grave Mistake, dug up from an old hard drive.
Big thanks to everyone who's clicked that subscribe button so far, and hopefully this will just be part of launching onward to bigger and better things when I do eventually make a proper return to professional animation!
Throughout February and March, I've been taking a 5 week course, refreshing my knowledge in how to animate in Toonboom Harmony. I don't feel I ever fully got to grips with it while I was at Cartoon Conrad previously, but this has been a great experience, and has really made me feel a lot more comfortable animating with the software. I'm excited to bring this skill back with me when I get back to Canada and get back into animating proper.
Embeds of the animation work I did are below the Read More, if you wanted to check them out.
These started as little doodles done to amuse myself, but I eventually built up enough of them to put together a whole asdf/Vine compilation style video for them. I'm actually really happy with some of the animation in here too - particularly the first skit and the "get out of your own head" skit.
After years of talking about it and planning, the first Doctor Chaotic short is finally complete! The time I've had out of studio has given me some free time and creative energy to finally pour into completing this short, which has existed as doodles and separate little plans in many various points since back when I was at university. The backgrounds are definitely something I want to improve on next time I do a Doctor Chaotic short, but I'm mostly happy with the character animation, and most importantly I'm happy that this finally exists, after so long stuck as an idea. Hope you enjoy it!
That image is from when I left Bristol in 2016, but the feeling is relevant again. Despite my best efforts, I'm not gonna be able to get permanent residency in time to stay in Canada. I am still trying, and I know I'm applicable to get the PR classification I'm aiming for, but as it stands, I'm going to have to go back to England for the time being. I'm gonna be stepping away from paid animation work (freelancing will complicate my tax situation, and I'd rather keep it simple for now), and work on getting myself back to Canada, where I have an open offer from Cartoon Conrad to return as soon as I'm legal to. It hurts to accept all of this as actually happening, but my visa expires on the 5th March, so I'm out of time to defer dealing with it any longer.
I will be working on personal art and projects in the mean time, but I currently have no plans to accept any substantial studio animation work for the duration of my time away from Canada.
The show I've been working on and that I was working on last summer is now available to watch online! Season one is up on the CBC website now, with season two likely coming later this year! Addison is about a young inventor and her friends setting out to solve the mysteries of their local neighbourhood. It airs on CBC every Saturday at 10am.
Gotta say - it feels pretty great to have my name in the credits of an actual TV show! Hopefully the first of many!
The first season of the first show I worked on at Cartoon Conrad is now available to watch on Netflix! I animated on the second half of the season, and helped with animation revisions on various episodes of the first half, as well as touching up backgrounds occasionally when needed. My name's even in the credits for at least some of the episodes! Feels good to be a part of a real show for the first time.
At this point, I'm currently working on a different show, destined for television on CBC, but it'll be interesting to see if We're Lalaloopsy does well enough to get a second season.
A webtoon I helped animate on at Cartoon Conrad has gone online! I worked on the winter and Christmas specials for the show "Max and Midnight", and they're available to watch on YouTube now. Catch the embeds below:
So I finally got round to updating my CV/resume with my new Canadian contact address, as well as the work I did for Tribal Group. With so much stuff on there now, I figured it was time to bump This is Normal off the list, as it isn't technically animation work. 7 of the 13 items on there were either for a client or a studio, and 4 of the 13 have been since graduating. The storyboarding position at Huminah didn't work out, but I've got "maybe's" from a couple places over animation positions/commissions, so hopefully it won't be long until the next time I get to add more to this!
This new CV is available for download on the Work page!
So I've finally gotten the animatic sorted! I'm still one line of dialogue down from having all of the final voices down, but other than that, I've got the story, the jokes, the shots and the timing of everything all worked out! It's currently unlisted on my YouTube, but if you don't mind spoilers, it's embedded below the Read More break.
I've been starting to tweak Doctor Chaotic's design, as well as revisiting a character called White Owl, who was created back in 2013 for a minor university assignment. I've had an idea for a short, largely focusing on Doctor Chaotic, that would help set the stage for the further stories involving the two of them that I think have quite significant potential in terms of story and humour.
I decided to rebrand the Facebook page I had set up for "This is Normal" so that it was for my animation and cartoon work as a whole rather than just that one property. To this effect, the new cover image - shown above - features original characters to help get across more of the styles I normally work in, including the girl from Grave Mistake, Sprakle, and Doctor Chaotic - who I am still planning on making something with sometime this year.
Another reason for this is that I am likely to be starting a Patreon campaign soon to help bridge gaps between work. It simply makes sense to have a single base on each social media platform, and having the TiN page already there just made sense to use for Facebook.
So the results came in on the Royal Television Society student awards, and the winner was the environmentally conscious "A Messy State of Affairs" by Arty Hunt. A very topical film, given the Paris climate accords last December, the news that 2015 was the hottest year on record, AND the fact that Bristol was the European Green Capital for 2015.
And on top of that, all three of us nominees were interviewed by a writer from Skwigly, and our films all featured in the article! So if you fancy seeing what everyone had to say and watch the nominated films for yourself, then check that out over here!
I recently took a side commission alongside my work at Sun and Moon, for this training company called Tribal, who do software to help businesses and educators track classes and training, etc. Similar to the Wessex ad, it's in a much more motion-graphics-like style.
Video's embedded below the Read More break.
So, the story of "Grave Mistake" is not quite over yet! Alongside hitting 10k views on YouTube, and getting noted recognition for being featured on the front page of Newgrounds (where it has another 8k views) when they introduced that new trophy, it has been nominated for the RTS Student Awards West of England in the Animation category! It faces stiff competition in the form of Frank Harper's beautifully crafted "Between the Trees", and Arty Hunt's politically charged "A Messy State of Affairs", but I still can't wait to see it up on the screen at the Watershed on February 11.
So the "Bring Your Own Animation" meetup group here in Bristol asked a few months back if anyone in the group was interested in creating some stings for them, and recently I finally got round to making my contribution. It'd been too long since I'd done anything properly with my character Sprakle, so I thought it'd be good to use him for it.
The work I did for Sun and Moon Studios during my latest stint of freelancing there is now available to watch on their Vimeo site, and I've collated them onto a Vimeo album here!
Below the read more break, I've also embedded the short that I personally did the highest proportion of the animation of. On all of them, I did the overwhelming majority of the animation on the main character, Al Gebra, as well as significant portions of the lip syncing on various characters, and animating several of the one-shot characters. I've been told that apparently, of all the animators they had in to work on it, I was the one who did the most animation! So that's a nice little achievement to be proud of!
I wasn't sure I'd get the chance to use the above loop again, but luck came my way, and I'll be spending 6 weeks working full time at Sun and Moon Studios again! I was last there for a week of work experience in January this year, and I'm so glad that I'll get to join everyone there again.
So I'm in contact with a studio at the moment over potential work, but their work is often done in ToonBoom rather than Flash, so I've been spending time recently practising that little by little.
I've used it on my entry for this month's Do It In Ten as well, as part of my practising. I'm still a little behind where I am on Flash, but that will likely change as I get to know and get comfortable with the software.