Thursday, 17 November 2011

First Shoot in Colour

Recently I completed my first shoot for my music video using colours. All the animation was done using the 'I Can Animate' App for the iPod touch, which I used to make a short clip of animation for amusement and I was very surprised with how well the quality came out. The App does have an option to render each clip in 720p as I have been doing for this project.

The above clip of animation was probably the most successful from the clips I was able to film. However, for all my other clips, it quickly became apparent on playing them back in a larger and better quality, that a reshoot is now necessary due to poor lighting.

For the above clip: Here I tried to change the lighting on set for when the rain clouds come in, but when reshooting I will do this in post instead.

The above clip is the first of the clips I shot. The lighting to the left of the screen is poor because my shadow got in the way.

In the case of the last clip, the lighting was good to begin with but changed half way through so it is a matter of keeping the lighting constant. Here I have been using one lamp to control the lighting but for the reshoot, I intend on shooting with two lamps resulting in light coming from both directions.

I also think I'll need to check each individual frame more closely before taking a frame, position myself well as an animator so my shadow is not in the way, and review each shot on the computer instantly once the footage is ready. The problem with the lighting has only come about now that I have been able to review each shot in more detail. I intend on keeping the 720p quality the same but the lighting will clearly have to be reconsidered.

Friday, 11 November 2011

The Distribution Company

I have looked at various record labels which could potentially distribute the planned Digipak release of my music video, and I have now chosen Parlophone to handle the distribution of the video in the UK.

File:Parlophone logo.svg

Parlophone is a British company set up in 1923 branched off from the 1896 German company Parlophon. I chose this to handle the distribution of my music video because it is a major UK distributor of music videos (MVs) and songs in the jazz, pop and rock genres, as well as novelty and voice recordings. It distributes indie music, so this would be the category for the indie folk song of my MV. Parlophone was responsible for the UK release of Radiohead's 'Paranoid Android', which also had an animated MV similar to the style of video I am aiming to achieve. The company is also notable for working with names such as Adam Faith, Kylie Minogue, Pet Shop Boys, Bernard Cribbins, Peter Sellers, The Chemical Brothers, Coldplay, Jim Dale and being a major starting point for The Beatles.

The parent company of Parlophone is the London-based EMI, which joins Universal Music Group, Warner Music Group and Sony Music Entertainment to form the 'Big Four' major record labels in the world.

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Choosing the Final Look of my Music Video

Following on from my latest post, I asked around my class and close friends and family for the most popular form of animation which I would use for my music video. I decided to ask to find out what people would most like to see, giving people the following choices:
  • Cutout animation using black and white paper cutouts - the cutouts would be easy as I would just be copying out the designs from my storyboards again, and the black and white would add to the main character's feeling of isolation, a key theme in the song. This method would be effective and take up a decent amount of time.
  • Cutout animation in colour - this was a recent idea which came about after seeing the film opening to 'Juno' which was forwarded to me. It would match my vision very well because there are areas of block colour which tie in well with my art style, and the colours would add more interest and be better to look at as an animation. The movements are also very similar to how my final product would probably look, so this method would look the most effective but probably be the most time consuming.
  • Traditional 2D computer animation - using images created in Gimp or Photoshop. This would be the easiest method to work with, given that I would create all my images on the computer including each individual frame of animation, so if any errors are made these would be easy to correct, whereas with other methods the whole shot would need to be filmed again.
After asking my class, family and friends, it was decided to go for the second option as had been planned all along. I would agree this is a good decision because it would be best for my music video - computer animation and stop-motion are formats I am experienced with, so whilst cutout animations would follow similar principles, it is something I have not done before and therefore a challenge to look forward to. It also gives the video itself a unique feel and much more independent and artistic tones, whilst suiting the song very well.

Thursday, 3 November 2011

Storyboards - #2

I recently did this design using very basic MS Paint to visualise how the music video could look if done using colour or part-colour. As well as this, I have been looking at the possibility of animating the music video digitally, using cutout animation on the computer as per the entire (except for its pilot) South Park series.

Shooting my music video in this way would reduce the problem of lighting, which is something I have had to control with traditional paper cutout animation because the shots I have done were filmed at different times during the day. It may also speed up the production process because I have had experience on this kind of animation before and I am familiar with the process.

However, I am enthusiastic about the idea of trying a new challenge using traditional drawings, so I am strongly leaning towards using paper cutout animation for the final production.

Initial Audience Feedback - #1

I have recently received audience feedback for the early development stages of my music video, using other members of my media studies class, close friends and family as critics. Every time the first comment has been the recognition of the "Tim Burtonesque" style which I have chosen to adapt, which thankfully is what I have been aiming for, as made clear with the shapes and formations of the buildings. After seeing the film opening to 'Juno' I have decided to adapt similar colour schemes to the drawings, which are currently black and white but are being amended as I have mentioned here.

Feedback has been positive and sparked interest from classmates, family and friends for being unique as an animated production. My classmates have even wanted to help through sending me potentially similar material to what I want my final production to be like:

I hope to obtain further feedback once more material is ready to show, but at present this shows that the music video I want to make is going in the right direction.

First Shoot and the Use of Colour

During half term I decided to film some shots directly from the storyboards I had created previously. At first it was hoped I would be able to use these in my final production, using a black and white look to show the lonliness the central character is feeling.

However, it was decided this week to shoot these shots again, after watching the opening title sequence to the film 'Juno'.

This helped me to find out how I could incorporate colour into my production. I intend on reshooting over the upcoming weekend to compare the two different looks and make a decision from there, although I feel colour will add greater interest to the music video. It would also tie in better with the song and its lyrics, and comparing this with the look of the titles for 'Juno', I think the feel of the song and the look of the music video will be perfectly combined.