From Zekey Spacey Lizard:
A few weeks ago, a nice fellow interviewed me for a project in one of his animation classes. I thought I would publish my answers here, too.
you get involved with animation?
grade a few friends and I started making flip books. Usually involving stick figures, guns,
defecation and the occasional rocketship.
Years later, in college, I made some animated gifs. That was before Flash came out. After university, I got my hands on Flash 5,
and soon realized I couldn’t live without it.
should point out that I didn’t study animation or art (although I wish I
had). I have a degree in music. So I was doing some teaching and gigging on
the side when I started learning Flash.
I started taking on freelance animation and illustration jobs after
that. That went on for maybe 5 or 7
years. It’s really only been in the last
two years or so that I’ve made a concerted effort to earn a living solely with
animation. I can’t say that I’ve “arrived” yet, but my perseverance
has certainly paid off.
you get your first job in animation and what it was like?
convinced my boss to pay me to make a cartoony website for the school. It won some kind of local website award, and
so he was willing to hire me again to make some animated Ecards and banner ads
have any advice or tips for university graduates on how to get involved and be
successful in the animation industry?
as it sounds: stick with it.
recommend working freelance rather than directly in a company?
always worked freelance. It’s probably
pretty nice to work for a company if you can find one who will hire you.
computer programmes do you use most often?
Photoshop, Cubase, various sound editing
equipment and materials for characters and sets are used most often in your
pencil, and Wacom
tell me roughly how expensive equipment, materials and programmes for graduates
who wish to be freelance animators will cost?
have a light table. I wish I did. But I have a tablet. A graphire 2, and recently I bought a bamboo,
which was less expensive but just as good if not better. I’ve worked on the larger intuos tablets and
I don’t find the larger drawing space to be advantageous. So I’d say go with the bamboo for 50 EUR
something like 200 or 300 bucks, I can’t remember exactly. Some programs come with hardware — I got an
LT version of photoshop which came with my graphire, also music software came
with my midi keyboard.
have any advice for finding work and meeting deadlines?
need a demo reel, and a webpage. Even
one of those free blog pages will suffice to show off your work. Even when you are starting out, never take on
any work that doesn’t compensate you fairly.
If they try to persuade you with promises of “exposure” or the like, politely run for your
that good planning is the key to meeting deadlines. And metaphorically speaking, start with the
the hardest job you have taken and what do you find as animator is generally
the hardest part of any job you undertake?
I’m working on at the time is always the hardest, for some reason.
say the hardest part is good planning.
Sometimes, I’ll have panels in the storyboard which are really vague and
I tell myself, “ah, I’ll deal with it when I get to it in Flash”. It always comes back to bite me in the ass.
you enjoy most about your work and animations you create?
in Flash, most of my animations rely on “cutout” type animating. Occasionally I find an excuse to do some
traditional animating; I get a real kick out of the times when it turns out good.
as it sounds, the most rewarding thing is the rare occasion when my work causes
a genuine emotional response from the viewer.
Rad. Every month, animators compete by completing an eleven second clip using the given sound material.
The 11 Second Club
Recently I tried out 2pad, an online service that plucks all your webmail attachments and catalogs them for you in a somewhat overseeable manner.
Pretty dandy, is my reaction. Although it appears you can’t have multiple addresses for a single login ID — you have to register each one separately. There is also a feature where you can arrange your attachments into albums and have them viewable for a list of invitees. This is one feature that is certainly not for me.
And was it ever about time at that. On two counts: the first being that I’ve needed to get a new wallet since at least a year ago (Julie gave me my last one as a present shortly after we met 3 years ago).
And the second being that I have been dying to try my hand at making something out of fused plastic since I first heard about it about two years ago. Killing two boids in a single shot, I made a wallet out of fuse plastic.
Fusing plastic bags in concept is simple enough: you cut and flatten out about five layers of plastic bags, either the thin produce kind, or trash bags or whatever. You heat them with a hot iron, keeping baking paper between plastic and iron. Crack a window, Space Ghost. More at Etsy.
From my fused plastic I cut a piece a bit larger than A4 and followed the instructions for a paper wallet. With the following changes: in step four, I only cut out the diamond. Also after folding the tabs on the ends I fused them shut with the iron.
I am trying out 2Pad. You give it your email login info and it downloads all the attachments, which you can then browse as an online gallery. How ’bout that.
Hardly a real hack, but life improving nonetheless. I like using Mozilla Thunderbird very much, but it has been getting to me how often I miss the “get mail” button and hit “write” instead. Then you have to close that new window, click “do not save”, and try again. Finally it occured to me that you can move the buttons around. I added a space between those two, and problem solved.
Minimize to tray is a groovy little add-on for Thunderbird for those of us who like to leave the email client running but hate the cluttered taskbar.
The fax machine was patented in
The trick to multiple choice tests is to throw out the ones that are obviously wrong. Ok, check your answer using this article in Wired Magazine.