Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Storyboarding workshop at City and Guild's

I went back to City and Guild's of London Art School this month to teach the new students. This year, I decided to hold a workshop that was closer to my practice and that would give the students the opportunity to get introduced to a subject that they had not been exposed to before. I had one day and a half with each group of twenty students, and so in that time i decided to teach an intensive storyboarding workshop.
The students had to write a short story to begin with, which they then exchanged with their classmates. After getting introduced to basic film theory and terminology, they had to create a storyboard that endorsed all the subjects we had introduced during the class. I talked to them through the differences of scenes and shots, where to place the camera, the importance of sound, and gave them a short film screening, including graduation films from the 80's until today that cover different animation and most importantly, storytelling techniques.

Animasyros Festival

This year i was invited by the organizers of Animasyros International Animation Festival in Greece to attend the festival as a member of the Jury, as last year i was awarded the Grand Prix at the festival. I was very honoured by the invitation and very happy i could go back to Greece, seeing I don't get to go back so often since my parents moved away. It was a wonderful opportunity to meet some lovely people, watch some wonderful films, and feel some warmth on my skin, after a rainy summer in London...

The festival takes place in the beautiful island of Syros, in the heart of the Cyclades, between 4 days. I arrived late on a Thursday evening, and I had 3 days of films, sun and fresh fish to enjoy with the other great members of the jury, Juergen Haas, Patrick Smith and Eva Stefani. Juergen is a professor in animation at the university of Luzern, in Switzerland, while Patrick teaches at the NYU and in Singapore and Eva teaches Theatre Studies in the University of Athens.

Although our main occupation was watching the films, we had the opportunity to take a dip in the Aegean, and have some nice meals together in the sun. We only wished the festival was slightly longer so we could have enjoyed a few more days of summer...!

Thankfully, we all agreed on which films we wanted to award, and so we gave the prizes to the following filmmakers: The Best Student Film was awarded to Korean film maker Song E Kim, for her film 'Bite of the Tail', produced in the US. We thought that the design of the film was fantastic, but also the use of symbolism and the atmosphere that Song created was wonderful. We also loved '366 Days' by Johannes Schiehsl, produced in Germany, but as we could only award one film, we had to give him the Honourable Mention for Student Film. I personally could have given that film the Grand Prix, as it was so complete, honest and simple. I hope Johannes puts the full film up online soon for us to watch it again as it is a real treat!

The Best International Film was awarded to a film that made us laugh like no other in the festival, due to its wonderfully appropriate context and its simple and effective humour. The film is called 'A Furtive Tear' and is a US production by Carlo Vorgele. Finally, we awarded the Honourable Mention to a French and Canadian production by Frank Dion, 'Edmond was a donkey', which had such a subtle design and rhythm, and was so beautiful and powerful. Finally, we awarded an honourable mention to Eleni Miltsi for her film 'Abeyance'.

Here are some pictures from our lovely time in Syros, with the guys from the Jury and Maria Anestopoulou, the festival organizer.

WWF Cursor Swarm

This summer, Dave Dan and I were contacted as Moth by Aimaq Von Lobenstein agency in Berlin, in order to make a short film for the WWF in Germany. We were instantly very excited at the idea of collaborating with the WWF and created a pitch combining their initial ideas for the film and our personal input and narrative style.
The film is a call to sign a petition against overfishing in European seas. As the WWF states, "For 30 years Europe’s Fisheries Ministers have made poor decisions that have resulted in overfishing, sending our fishing industry into decline. If this continues we will bankrupt our oceans and our fishing economy". The vote against overfishing will take place on the 20th of November.
We were very happy to hear that the film helped raising a lot of awareness and that EU politicians have already contacted the WWF to talk about their proposals. We hope that they will make the right decision next month, but until then, you still have time to watch it and to sign the petition at either the German or the UK website. The German one is decorated with our illustrations too!


WWF Cursor Swarm from Moth on Vimeo.

We worked on the film during August and September, in a lovely studio we rented out just for the purpose of this project. The studio space was kindly given to us by Sparkle Animation, where we got in our dear friends Matthias Hoegg and Mikey Please, to help us out with animation and compositing for two weeks. James Hatley, Daniela Negrin Ochoa and Kristian Andrews also helped us with animation. Most importantly though we had the chance to work with Marian Mentrup, also a good friend of ours that we had never had the chance to collaborate until this project, who did a fantastic job with the music and that we couldn't thank more.  

Motionographer did a little feature on the film, where you can read more about the production and see the full list of credits. 

BBC Science Series Pitch

In July we were contacted as Moth to do a pitch for the new BBC Science Series. We didnt win it, but we did get through the last round! Here are some stills i designed for them and that i wanted to share as i enjoyed making them!