Posts by rlnelson

Professor of Art, Design Instructor at Truman State University

Wrapping things up

Today we work on assembling all the animation assignments into a animation “reel” in iMovie and uploading to YouTube. Tomorrow morning (Friday) we will watch everyone’s reel to see everything we have accomplished in three weeks.


Post Production Blues

We are moving into post production on the claymation today. Adding audio, sound FX, voice-overs, transitions, intro screens and credits. This can be a continuation of the team or the students can edit their own version of the claymation animation. Everybody got to the 3 minute mark. Yeah!

Building sets

We worked on sculpting our claymation characters yesterday (Friday). Sorry, I was too busy cutting clay into thin slabs for the students to be able to video the sculpting process.

This morning we work on constructing the sets for the claymation stop motion project. We start shooting on Monday.


Claymation begins

We are moving into the claymation project. Yesterday afternoon we worked on brainstorming story idea, assembling our animation groups, roughing out the story, storyboarding and acting out the story to see if it lasts 3 minutes.

Today and tomorrow we begin character and set development/design and building the claymation puppets and the foamcore sets. We should be ready to animate on Monday. This is a 3 minute animation (at 10 fps, the students have to shoot 1800 frames).

The planning, brainstorming and story development was pretty stressful, but crucial for the animation production to go well.

Let me tell you a story

In conjunction with our cut paper animated story, we watched several YouTube videos about story-telling.  From Bloop Animation were a series of story-telling structure tips used by Pixar. The basic structure that Pixar uses in their stories is…

Once a upon a time there was a _____________ and everyday _____________. One day _____________. Because of that _____________, because of that _____________, until finally _____________.

Fill in the blanks and you have a story to tell with structure.

Another good video from Chris Do has five ways of thinking of story-telling.

  1. Conflict – you have a Character with a want/desire and an obstacle to overcome
  2. Subject reality VS Objective reality and the conflict that causes
  3. Normal reality followed by some sort of explosive event and the resulting new reality
  4. Delay the story resolution. Drag it out for as long as you can
  5. Make DRAMATIC what ever the story is about. Exaggerate, make whatever it is, life or death (whether or not it is)