This time we take a slightly different look at animation, moving away from plastic minifigures to look at an animator with a self appointed PHD in Plasticine!
1. How long have you been animating?
I made my first stop motion film about 8 years ago and haven’t really stopped animating since then.
2. How did you start making stop frame animation?
I’d made a character (a little snail) out of plasticine for fun and thought that it would be cool to animate it. I set up at my kitchen table, shot a little clip using an old digital camera and edited the stills together in Windows Movie Maker.
3. What medium do you prefer to work in and why?
It has to be plasticine. While it’s not the most durable material, it’s fun to work with and there’s so much that you can do with it. You can be really intricate and artistic with it or a bit more messy and expressive and still achieve something that looks great.
4. What is your setup like? Which camera and software do you use to make your movies?
At the minute, I use a Canon 450D camera with Dragonframe stop motion software. For lighting, I use F&V LED lights and edit my films in Adobe Premiere Pro.
5. On average, how many hours does it take to create your films?
It varies from project to project. Currently, I make a one minute film every week for a Youtube channel using two characters over a plain white background, which takes around two and a half days. I’ve recently signed off on a music video, however that took around six months to complete and involves a full set, backdrop, props and several characters. The music video is only two minutes in length, but a lot more went into the production process.
6. Do you have a favourite character to animate, and what makes them so special?
I’ve animated a clay version of Cookie Monster a few times which is always fun, but in terms of my own work, my go to character is always a bear. I feel like if I had to choose a mascot, it’d be a bear because they’re adorable and full of personality.
7. What can we look forward to in the near future from you?
Tough question! I’ve made a couple of adverts and a music video which have been really fun, so I’d love to do more work like that. I also love making my own short films and I’ve had an idea in mind for a little while now, but I know it’ll take a very long time to complete, so it’s all about finding the time to set aside for it. In short, more films.
8. Where can people go for more information or to view your animations?
I’m also on Instagram (@dr_Designasaur), Twitter and Facebook (as Designasaur) if you want to say hello!
9. What one piece of advice do you have for people wanting to start in stop-frame animation?
Just start. You don’t need much to get going – just a camera and an object/character/drawing that you want to animate. There are loads of apps or free programmes that you can download now to edit your film together and share it online. You can even do it on your phone. Your first film probably isn’t going to be your masterpiece, but keep going and you’ll improve with every project.