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Class 6 redux

Posted on March 31, 2008 
Filed Under Animation Mentor | 1 Comment

Here we are. Back to AM for a new Class 6. It’s pretty cool, I am back to AM with some of my first classmates, superstar animator Salem Arfaoui, Michael Herold but the coolest thing ever is that I am gonna be mentored by Kevin Koch! I was stalking his blog for a while and now he is gonna deliver his knowledge every week through webcam! How cool is that? Kevin has worked at Dreamworks for few years from back in the 2d days till 2006.

I am gonna learn a lot this term again!

Class 6 “It’s a wrap!”

Posted on March 26, 2008 
Filed Under Animation Mentor | 1 Comment

For our last Q&A, Jason was in a hotel room where he would spend few nights while attending a workshop at Dreamworks Glendale, hosted by James Baxter! Nice. Unfortunately it was our last Q*A so we will never know what James Baxter spoke about :-(

Here is a mugshot of Jason, surrounded by my fellow classmates. Hopefully we will all meet again at the Graduation Ceremony in San Francisco this summer and you will probably see the names of at least 2 of them in the credits of forecoming features!!!


Leaving home

Posted on March 21, 2008 
Filed Under Miscellaneous | 2 Comments

Here is a funny clip a friend found on Youtube. I remember an AM student using it for his class 4 assignment and I am a bit disapointed as the acting was very similar. This is why I would recommend people to get audio clips where the acting can be interpreted in different ways

Train Train

Posted on March 19, 2008 
Filed Under Animation | 9 Comments

some of the regulars on the french animation forum I regularly visit, have release a short extract from their new short “Train, Train”. I really like it! All the shots with the car have been animated in After Effect… Insane ;-)
Train train, un short by Gilles Cuvelier, Samuel Guénolé, Gabriel Jacquel and Claire Trollé.

I am also posting a link to Mister Coq, which wasn’t selected for Annecy this year :-(



“Daphne’s new broom”

Posted on March 18, 2008 
Filed Under Animation | 3 Comments

At Animation Mentor I was lucky to have some great mentors but also to to be in the same class as few animators extraordinaire. Here are two I would like to mention today, Ales Mav and Maciek Gliwa

Ales Mav was featured few times I think on the Animation Mentor showreel and he is also the director of CG Talk front page short “Daphne’s new broom”


He obviously animated the entire short but also took care of the rigging, modeling, lighting and rendering. The facial could have benefited of a little bit more work but for a 2 minutes 30 short done by one guy in half a year, I think this is just amazing.

Now Maciek Gliwa was equally featured on the animation mentor showreel at least once or twice for his famous baseball pitch but I wanted to feature him because he is a very nice guy despite being very tall ;-) and because he should be joining a prestigious feature animation studio in California sometime this year. Don’t forget to check this animatic he did a while ago for a football kick.


Horton behind the scenes

Posted on March 17, 2008 
Filed Under Animation | 10 Comments

 I previously posted few links to differents showreels of animators who worked on it but Blue Sky wasn’t too happy about them I guess as they have all been brought down. 

I saw the movie yesterday. It is really fun and the animation is really much to my liking. Really really entertaining.
The only problem I have is that I saw too many behind the scenes and trailers than I had seen pretty much all the funny animation beforehand.

Here are few links for you:

Kenny’s pictures [working link]
Nick Bruno’s Horton showreel [reel taken off]
Jeff Gabor animation stages from video ref to final animation  [reel taken off]

Learning composition with Hortons Hears a Who

Posted on March 9, 2008 
Filed Under Animation | Leave a Comment

virg.jpgA colleague from work (animator extraordinaire Jon ;-) ) showed me this webiste a while ago but I had lost the url until today. Brazilian animator Virgilio Vasconcelos has a great blog and one of the posts he wrote was an image composition walkthrough using the Hortons Hears a Who trailer.

There is nothing really new here but it is always good to see how much work goes into crafting those movies. Which reminds me that I wanted to do the same with a scene from Elia Kazan (1951) “A streetcar named Desire”.

Ed Hook did an acting walkthrough of the Steeeeeelllaaaaa scene during his workshop last month showing the change of status, psychological gesture, imaginary centers using Marlon Brando and Kim Hunger but I also noticed how beautifully Elia Kazan played with the shadows. Without the sound or even the acting, just by paying attention to the shadows or the graphic pattern, you would quickly understand the story.

Horton Hears a Who. behind the scenes

Posted on March 8, 2008 
Filed Under Animation | 1 Comment

I didn’t know the work of Dr Seuss before the movie but I am starting to like it very much. Some of the shots are really really funny! If the videos weren’t streamed I would watch some of the shots or sequences in loop. The one with Horton and the feather has a great cartoon timing. The one with the mayor at the dentist with his flappy arm…… there are soooo many great shots that I wonder how they managed to cram so much fun in same movie.
Here is a selection of Blue Sky new feature’s behind the scenes.

Horton comes to life:


the tech talk is very interesting too.

my toys

Posted on March 8, 2008 
Filed Under Miscellaneous | Leave a Comment

a lot of people at work have toys on their desks here is a pictures of mine! Carla has probably the best ones but I don’t have a picture yet. Mine are all sorts of toys collected over the years. They all keep me inspired for different reasons.

The Pixar pot is a freebie from the Annecy festival last year, there is an african sculpture at the back which comes …. from Africa ;-) The muppet show and Aardman characters are coming from Forbidden Planet in London, Shadow is a designer toy from Nathan Jurevinius’s “Scary girl”, it comes from Playground in Soho, the Zombie robot is from a comics shop in Annecy, the Smurfs are a new addition I just bought in a comic shop in Bayonne. I just got Wario from a collegue at work who has an online shop (I can’t remember the url…) and there are few more toys which I bought from Forbidden Planet just for the proportions, or because the anatomy is well defined or the way they have sculputed the hair or the creases on the clothing.


Short film class 6, 3 weeks left

Posted on March 6, 2008 
Filed Under Animation Mentor | 1 Comment

After few weeks working like a mad man. Class6 is finally coming to an end. Unfortunately I won’t be able to finish my short on time and will have to redo class 6 but it was a blast again and for this class I was privileged to have animator extraordinaire Jason Schleifer as a mentor..

For those who don’t know, Jason is an animation superstar who started his animation career at Weta and after few years at Dreamworks working on everything that was thrown at him ;-) he is currently a supervising animator on the sequel of my favourite Dreamworks show: “Madagascar 2” (Prince of Egypt and Eldorado are my second favourite).

He was really inspiring and having him for mentor for my short was a god send. He really helped me out in defining my character’s personality and without him I am not sure if my short would have been as strong. Obviously I am paying the consequences as well and some of the shots that were meant to last 4 seconds ended up well over 20 seconds ;-) anyway this will make my short even better and I don’t regret it at all! Instead of a 30seconds short I will end up around 2 minutes which is … perfect for festivals ;-)

caricature by the great Mark Behm


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