It'll be up on YouTube tomorrow.
So two and a half weeks after I posted "Grave Mistake" to Newgrounds, I finally uploaded my film for the BBC Listening Project, and it got a warm reception - winning Daily 5th, and being one of two of that day's Top 5 to be featured on the Newgrounds home page. I'm glad it's done as well as it has - humour and parody definitely play better with the audience of Newgrounds than the kind of thought-provoking documentary style thing like my film, so I'm definitely happy to see it get this far.
It'll be up on YouTube tomorrow.
So yesterday I managed to reach the 85% mark on completion of animated shot elements, and finish animating both Death and the Girl, meaning that all three of the main characters have now been completely animated, 5 days ahead of when I was hoping. It's a great milestone to hit, and means I can be confident that the time I'm about to take off won't jeopardise the quality of the rest of the film.
If I get some of the smaller remaining shot elements done in the meantime then I'll be even further ahead of schedule. I had ruled out applying a texture to the film to give it a similar feel to "Under the Weather" because I didn't think I would have the time, but looking at how I'm going, I think I may have to re-evaluate that.
It's finally out! The film I did for BBC Radio 4 is now live on their website! It won't be getting a publicity push from the Beeb until sometime in the new year, but it's live and ready to watch now, so go check it out!
The BBC contact has sent me an intro card and a closing title card to add onto my film for the Listening Project, and I've exported it at the settings they've sent, and it seems at least one of the other groups who were producing something has finally finished, which should mean that the film should go live sometime in the next couple of months - hopefully sooner rather than later. It'll be great to finally show this thing off in all it's glory.
I managed to get my hands on After Effects and have finally finished my work on the BBC Listening Project short! Apparently, I'm the first to do so, so we'll see how this goes with other participants. But all going well, it should be online sometime around October.
Here's a little sneak peak of it:
So I finally completed all the animation involved in the BBC Listening Project short! At this point, I now need to get some photography and some After Effects done to get the final done-on-a-whiteboard idea I'm aiming for across.
I'm planning on getting a photo of a whiteboard outside somewhere - probably in Castle Park, and transposing the animation over the top of it, and using After Effects to zoom in and out of it, as per the start and end of the animatic.
Should be good!
I'm now past the 80% mark with the BBC Listening Project animation, thanks to a particularly busy evening. It's felt pretty damn good watching my production chart light up green as I've been getting through it, and with 164/200 seconds of animation done, I'm gonna be trying to give this one final push to complete it by the end of the month.
Come 1st July, I'm aiming to have the entirety of this chart greened out, and if I'm particularly productive, then also have worked out the After Effects portion of production and be completely finished and ready to send off to my contact at the BBC.
I'm in London on Saturday, so that's one less day to work on this and more reason to get going with it.
As a part of the push to finish this, I've also put on hold my work for Justine's project. My next meeting with her will be on the 15th, so that's plenty of time to have finished this up and be ready to move on.
In the time since the last update, I've received my grades for the final two modules on the second year of my course! I got a 2:1 in Professional Practice and a First in Developing Practice, so good times all-round!
I've also reached the half-way mark in the animation phase of the BBC Listening Project! It's progressing really well and looking really good so far. The transition from animatic to animation's been pretty smooth and I'm certain that the beeb'll be happy with it once I've finished so long as I keep the quality level up.
On top of that, I've now signed up to do a storyboarding exercise/project with Justine Saint-Lo, an MA student at uni, where I will be taking her early beat-boards and turn them into a proper storyboard that can be turned into an animatic to hopefully pitch the project for further production. Exciting stuff and I'm looking forward to getting my teeth into it.
And on a final note, I've started thumbnailing out a possible comic book. It would be a short one-shot comic, likely below 25 pages, but enough that I feel it would be worth getting printed as a zine and putting up for sale. I'm looking at the potential of getting a table at the Bristol Comic and Zine Fair in October, and maybe the Bristol Comic Expo next May, and this would be a good start for material for both of those events. The story revolves around a cutesy love story between a fox and a werewolf, and I reckon would attract a fair amount of interest.
I'm also going to be turning the existing Sprakle animatics into proper animations soon, as well as producing more - but likely when some of these projects are a little more finished and off my plate.
It's gonna be a busy summer!
I'm continuing to make progress on the BBC Listening Project film, but I'm having to put it on hold in order to deal with some more immediate demands of my university course. I need to put together a 20-page module journal and a 10-page research document, as well as a feasible pitch for a 60 second film to be made in the first 6 weeks of next semester.
Hopefully I'll be able to get the uni paperwork done and out of the way and then I'll be free to continue putting my time and effort into the Listening Project.
I've been doing more work on the BBCLP video over the past couple days, and I'm now roughly 1/5 of the way through. I've been starting from the longer and more difficult shots and working down in order (but also doing the opening shot just cos it felt like the right place to start) to help keep motivation and momentum throughout this part of production. I know as work carries on quality tends to slip, so by saving the smaller shots for later, they'll feel like less work so I'll be able to do them just as well as I'm doing the rest of it so far.
I was going to aim for the October deadline, but at this pace, I could easily hit the June 30th deadline instead, so let's see if I can keep the momentum up!
Three shots are now completed, and another is currently in the works, meaning 14 seconds of animation is completed, and another 14 seconds is nearing completion. 2:52 to go!
Here's the opening shot of it as it stands:
This'll be edited and mixed with some live-action footage at a later point in production, but for now, I'm really happy with how this is looking and will continue on to the remaining work.
Here is the first piece of completed animation from the BBC Listening Project! 3 seconds down, 3:17 to go!
I finally managed to get the animatic through to the BBC contact without it being sorted into their Junk box and they approved it without asking for any changes, so now I'm getting ready to move it forwards into production. I've worked out how many shots I have an noted how long each of those shots are, and also ranked them by difficulty. It's a pretty non-creative job, but given the whole load of creativity that basically surrounds every other bit of work I've done, it's almost nice to have a break and focus on numbers and grids, and get really analytical for a little while.
The ranking by difficulty is mostly to help me decide which shots/characters can be given to other people to work on to help speed the work along.
I'm probably going to start working from the larger shots and work down, while giving out the shortest/easiest shots to people who may volunteer to help out. Given the large number of shots, it may well be that I'm working on this into the summer holiday. Hopefully that won't detract too much from trying to get a job or some work experience in that time - the simplicity of the film means that it's feasible to work on in spare time.
I've now finished the animatic for the BBC Listening Project, pending final approval from the BBC's representative. But if that goes well, then I'll be able to get the green light to go into production, and I can get the ball rolling on crewing up and getting more animators involved for the next phase of production. I'll probably also get someone to fulfil the role of producer to manage timetables and schedules so I can focus on making sure the animation and look of the thing works out.
The main issue I forsee in production is the move between live-action and animation - the short begins and ends with a transition between looking at a whiteboard and being zoomed out from that whiteboard to see the wider surroundings. If this costs too much time, then I can probably live without it, but I think it'd be a really nice touch and sort've explain the style of the whole thing.
Still, now that I've got this animatic done, time to get it approved.
I'm now a third of the way through the animatic for the BBC Listening Project, with just 2 mins 8 sec left to do. I'm aiming to really knuckle down in the next week and a half and hopefully knock out the rest of it and get some feedback, and hopefully, the go-ahead to move to the animation phase.
The basic jist of the short is that they're walking through a generic supermarket shelf, with cut-away sequences to illustrate some of the situations that they talk about.
If you want to listen to the clip I'm going to be animating, it's currently here on the BBC website.
If I can build up my buffer for This is Normal more in the next couple of days, I won't have to worry about it next week and that'll give me some time to really focus on this.