Tag Archives: animation

Visiting the Isle of Spagg

The brothers McLeod, Myles and GregThanks to Brothers McLeod for a great evening previewing their new pilot Isle of Spagg, a full half hour of animation – that’s a lot of blinking Flash frames! We were also treated to a 30 minute presentation from the  Greg and Myles (animator and writer respectively), walking us through the whole process of creation, from concept, holiday, sketching, drinking, through to working with actors and musicians, raising funding, and final production.

The Brothers talked of the three years it took to bring the Isle of Spagg to life. Greg told us that the idea for the film came some 10-11 years ago when they were in Cornwall and saw Monkeys Head Island. He said “I got to wondering whether there was a community on the other side [of the island]” and the idea was born.

Partially funded by the MEDIA Programme of the European Union the project started by the brothers “taking a week out of the office” writing and drawing, and generally trying to make each other laugh as they created the characters and drew up their animation bible for the film. Commenting on the process Greg said that they needed “to love the characters as a 30 minute film meant they would be a round for a very long time!”

Although the brothers felt that the music brought the film to life it was the actors who played the characters who really made the difference. “The original read through was not funny, but as the actors got into it they made us laugh as they brought the characters to life”.

Brothers McLeodGreg and Myles paid tribute to the production team:

Voice Artists: Lu Corfield, David Holt, Louis McLeod, Myles McLeod, Lucy Montgomery and Richard Ridings. Design and Animation Greg McLeod. Lead Animators Tom Evans and Kirsten Thacker. Turnarounds and Animation Robert Brown. Animation Nick Wade, Hamish Baird and Louis Hudson. Character Rigging Lizz Lunney. Sound Paul Johnston and Dave Peacock. Music Mark Dean, The Reel Note Ceili Band and Strumpit. Script Editor Hayley McKenzie. Producer Helen Brunsdon.

They also thanked: Tom Angell, Thomas Crook, Camilla Deakin, Lucy Fawcett, Rebecca Papworth, Andy Wyatt, the animation students at University College Falmouth and their families.

The Brothers are fully socialised, so go befriend them, twitter them, and watch films on YouTube.

Next month we’re taking a summer break, so we’re back at OFVM Film Oxford on Thursday September 15th.

In the meantime, if you have any ideas for a talk, or topic for the night, do get in touch. If you want us to approach someone who’s been an inspiration to you, in design, illustration, animation, the web, anywhere – we can make the approach for you, just let us know.

Brothers McLeod visit – 21 July

Brothers McLeodTop animators Brothers McLeod exclusive screening – next Thursday

BAFA award nominees, The Brothers McLeod, illustrator Greg and writer Myles, will be talking about their latest project, a half hour comedy pilot called The Isle of Spagg. They’ll be telling us how they came up with the idea, how they found the time and money to make it, and what they hope to do with it in the future. The talk will also include an exclusive screening of the finished pilot.
Greg and Myles visited us a year or so back and gave us a great night. Do invite your friends along to this and let’s make it a good evening. If you’re interested in animation and/or Flash, come along.

Day: Thursday 21st July
Time: 7:30 pm.
Where: OFVM Film Oxford, 54 Catherine Street, Oxford, OX4 3AH http://bit.ly/ofvm-loco
How much: Free
For whom: anyone interested in networking with other digital creatives in Oxfordshire

Meat in Space report


Menu for Meat in Space nightA fantastic night last week, thank you to Neil C Smith, Tim Watts, James Davies, Efthymios Chatzigiannis and Dariusz Dziala for their great presentations.

Neil talked us through his praxis framework – don’t forget, if you’re interested in creating interactive or generative artwork, you can download praxis on Google Code and give it a go, it’s all Open Source. Watch an excerpt from Sound Pool.

Tim Watts showed us some of his great experimentation with Flash recreating an existing image but with a beautiful particle effect adding a touch of randomness and personalisation to the original. What’s it for? When you start asking that question, you just know you’re making something interesting.

James Davies, a past raffle winner, walked us through the creation process in Flash, Premiere and AE, behind his wonderful videos for First Fold Records. Check the YouTube channel, and the First Fold website.

Dariusz Dziala and Efthymios Chatzigiannis demoed their VJing and audio collaboration, Synaesthetics. They also showed us how it’s all done, and finally, for those who could hang on, Dariusz, Efthymios and Neil jammed together, a world first, happening in Oxford!

Download the menu from last Thursday’s Meat in Space night.

Keep Thursday 21st July free for another exclusive:

The Brothers McLeod, illustrator Greg and writer Myles, will be talking about their latest project, a half hour comedy pilot called The Isle of Spagg. They’ll be telling us how they came up with the idea, how they found the time and money to make it, and what they hope to do with it in the future. The talk will also include an exclusive screening of the finished pilot.

Animator shows the work of young Oxfordshire film makers

Iona Fabian at Digital Creatives Oxford

Freelance film-maker and animator Iona Fabian last week demonstrated her work with schools and young people to the monthly meeting of the Digital Creatives Oxford group. Iona, who has been freelancing for 13 years, showed the group of media professionals online video animations created by young pupils of her workshops in Oxfordshire schools using Adobe Premiere Elements and Windows Moviemaker. The many examples of short clips of less than a minute were complemented by more complex animations lasting up to 10 minutes.

Iona pointed out that the young animators use many different materials to create their films, from Wallace and Grommet style plasticine to torn coloured paper, small models to crumpled tissue paper. Working methodically in groups of up to 5 around a camera the children have over many hours brought these materials to life, adding a mixture of music, sound effects, scripts and commentaries to give the animations an extra dimension.

“The students learn not only how to be patient and methodical, they develop team working and problem solving skills as well” said Iona. “Animation skills are becoming increasingly popular with parents now asking for workshops in order to keep pace and to be as creative and absorbed as their children”.

Finally during the evening’s talk and demonstration Iona screened a 10 minute animation created at John Watson School. This was the result of a multi-group activity across the school. One team of young people created the animation whilst another team wrote poetry to accompany the film. A group of young musicians in the schools teamed up to put the poetry to music and the school choir recoded the song as the backing sound track for the animation. “A marvellous experience of team working and creativity” said Iona.

Future meetings of the Digital Creatives Oxford group

March 17th After Effects Expressions with film maker Dariusz Dziala

April 21st Oxford professional photographer Gary Ombler

May 19th Commercial photographer, Mark Sommerville

June 16th – “Adventures in Meat Space”

July 21st Famous animators, Brothers McLeod

Meeting this Thursday – February 17th, 7.30pm at OFVM Film Oxford

Iona Fabian

Clay figure for stop motionThis month the Adobe Groups bring you Iona Fabian, a Freelance Film-Maker and Animator. After completing Science A-levels, a year of Architecture and a Fine Art degree she found herself in the world of Corporate and Educational Video. Having worked her way up from graphics assistant to running the whole department she went freelance, and has had a varied career since then, editing, directing, special effects and teaching. With a strong leaning to the Experimental side of film-making, and a specialisation in teaching Stop-Motion Animation to children , she enjoys pushing boundaries, mixing old-school with  digital technology, and nurturing creative thinking.

Come and hear her talk about her work and maybe try out some animation!

When: this Thursday (17th Feb) at 7.30pm

Where: OFVM Film Oxford
54 Catherine Street

Cost: free

As usual, if you have ideas of your own about someone you’d like to hear / see speaking – let us know. Web, photography, illustration and design, coding, marketing, anything goes!