Friday, 15 December 2017

Reflective Statement and Film Reviews Link

Here is a link to all my film reviews:
(Labelled under "Collaboration Project: Film and Lecture Program)

Collaboration Project - Reflective Statement

Before the project started, I was really excited at the prospect of working in a group. I looked forward to working with other students, thinking of creative ideas together and being able to support and help each other. At the beginning of the project our group was flowing with ideas and it was difficult to settle on one idea quickly.

However once we were able to decide on the character "Fashion Man",  our ideas seemed to come together quite quickly. We assigned roles by identifying  each others strengths and weaknesses. As a result  Noah became the Director, Rachel  the Production Designer and I was the Producer.

As a group we really enjoyed acting out a variety of skits and stories that we formed around Fashion Man.  This helped us to understand the character more. It became evident that we had something that was really quite funny and someone who had enormous potential to appeal to a large and varied audience.

I felt the role of the Producer best suited me as I am naturally organised and like to work to a schedule or plan. I am also able to work to deadlines and like to be finished ahead of any due date.  I also am aware however that I need to give myself the necessary time to understand the task or the skill area as due to the way in which I process information this can be difficult. 

This project has taught me how difficult and complex a project can be when team members are not able keep to the schedule.  I felt that I had an inadequate and unfair amount of time left for me to animate my work because our proposed timescales were not adhered to. The knock on effect of this was that I felt incredibly pressurised and very stressed.  I was frustrated because I knew I needed more time and I felt that disappointed that I wouldn't be able to produce work to the standard I hoped.

My group became increasingly slow as the project progressed and our communication which had not been good throughout,  suffered a lot.  Two weeks before the deadline we were still in the designing process.  Consequently,  designs weren't finished and I didn't feel able to properly fulfill my role as the CG Modeler. I regret this as I was looking forward to modelling in Maya.

Despite my increasing frustrations, sense of panic and stress, at times, I felt able to behave in a professional manner with those around me and remained calm and positive in any discussions that we were able to have.

As the producer, I always tried to motivate my group by communicating with them in person and on Basecamp.

Overall, although our animation didn't come across as clearly as our animatic and things remained incomplete, I know that I did the very best that I could as the Producer of our group. I love the character that we created and was pleased with the idea but I am disappointed we didn't manage to get the full potential of it across.

Working as a collaboration has taught me that not everyone's needs are the same and they will prioritise differently to me.  I know I need more time when using software and to be more confident in my opinions and decisions. I probably should have said this at the outset of the project so that the group were fully aware of the group and individual expectations, weaknesses and strengths.

Monday, 11 December 2017

Michael McIntyre's Big Show - Comedy Review

Figure 1. Poster
Michael McIntyre is a well known stand up, British Comedian. On BBC One he presented his own program called Michael McIntyre's Comedy Roadshow. He also performed in Live at the Apollo and became a judge in 2011, for Britain's Got Talent.

Stand-up originated from the United States and gradually became a popular form of comedy.
"In the United States, where it developed first and reached its greatest popularity, it had its origins in the comic lecturers, such as Mark Twain, who toured the country in the 19th century. It began to emerge as populist entertainment in vaudeville in the early decades of the 20th century."
(Zoglin, 2017)

Figure 2. Mark Twain

"Stand Up Comedians usually write, direct and perform their own material. In some cases, as they become more established, they may also work with another writer, or with a team of writers." (Creative Skillset, 2017)
Michael's material usually revolves around his personal life and the situations he goes through. He tells humorous stories about his family, friends, work colleges or just the general 'every day' people that he comes across.

Figure 3 Michael McIntyre
In his most recent show: 'Michael McIntyre's Big Show' he does more than just stand- up comedy, he is also more interactive with the audience members, strangers and invites celebrities too. Most of the comedy often surrounds the embarrassment and shock of an audience member or celebrity.

For example there is one point in the show called 'send to all' where he takes possession of a celebrit phone, writes out a funny message and sends it to all of their contacts. Later on in the show he checks the celebrity's phone,  to see what the responses are.  They are often humorous in their own right but with Michael McIntyre's  sense of timing he ensures that the lines are delivered to maximum effect.

Figure 4. Danny Dyer
Another game they play is 'Unexpected Star of Show.' A person will be nominated by a family member without them knowing,  to sing on the show. As part of the act, Michael usually arranges a meeting with the person but creates a different persona so that the person nominated doesn't know its him. He might be disguised as a waiter in a restaurant or the Chief Karate Instructor at a Training centre.

Michael entertains the audience  in disguise whilst the person concerned is completely unaware of the scam. The next time they see Michael it is after the walls of a makeshift room have fallen down to reveal him and the theatre full of people. Michael reveals his true identity.

The person is usually in great shock when they see Micheal McIntyre and a huge audience in front of them. He then sends them off to train with a vocal coach before they perform later on in the show.

Figure 5. Sanja Michael McIntyre

Also another game that is very funny is the 'Midnight Gameshow.' McIntyre enters someones home (with permission of a family member) during the middle of the night and wakes them up by bursting into their bedroom with the camera crew too. He then starts to quiz the person, which results in them winning prizes. The person is often left startled and confused whilst the other family member is in fits of laughter.

Figure 6. Lee and Michael McIntyre

"Michael McIntyre’s Big Show, back on BBC1 for a third series, saw the Marmite stand-up continue his transformation into an all-round host/entertainer in the Bruce Forsyth mould." (Robson, 2017)

Not everyone will like Michael McIntyre's style of comedy. Comedy is rather like "marmite." I believe this is because comedy something that is personal to the viewer. How funny something is, can depend on our age, life experiences and culture. In my view, I think Michael McIntyre is excellent at creating stories that we can relate to. He is not crude in his approach but warm, positive and family friendly.  It is funny to laugh at other people's misfortune and Michael McIntyre manages to combine this type of humour and laughter whilst maintaining the respect and integrity of his stooges.

Illustration List
Figure 1.
(Accessed 11.12.17)

Figure 2.
(Accessed 11.12.17)

Figure 3.
(Accessed 11.12.17)

Figure 4.
(Accessed 11.12.17)

Figure 5.
(Accessed 11.12.17)

Figure 6.
(Accessed 11.12.17)

Creative Skillset (2017) Stand Up Comedian
(Accessed 11.12.17)

Robson J (2017) Michael McIntyre's Big Show: A pleasantly silly Saturday night winner
(Accessed 11.12.17)

Zoglin R (2017) Stand Up Comedy
(Accessed 11.12.17)

Playblast of my progress so far

Here is a rough playblast of my progress so far. I had to use my sisters Vimeo account to upload this video because I've run out of storage on my own account.

Wednesday, 6 December 2017

Part 10 - The Eyes

Part 10 - The Eyes

Life Drawing - Lesson 10

5 - 10 min Poses (Black Pen)

10 minute Pose (Pencil)

5 minute Pose (Pencil)

20 minute Pose (Chalk and Pen)

10 minute Pose (Chalk and Pen)

Monday, 4 December 2017

Beauty and the Beast (2017) - Adaptations

Figure 1. Beauty and the Beast (1991) and (2017)

Beauty and the Beast was originally a fairy tale that has been passed down through the ages: "Most fairy tales began as folklore, passed on from generation to generation, until they were eventually written down by collectors such as Giambattista Basile, Charles Perrault or the Brothers Grimm.  Unusually, Beauty and the Beast does not appear in the anthologies of any of these authors (although the Grimms do have a reasonably similar version in The Singing Springing Lark)." (Pook Press, n.d)

French author Madame Gabrielle - Suzanne de Villeneuve, later published the story in La Jeune AmĂ©ricaine, et Les Contes Marins in 1740 known as "La Belle et La BĂȘte."  Villeneuve story was influenced by female intellectuals such as Charles Parault and Madame d'Aulnoy.

Figure 2. Madame De Villeneuve's Original Beauty an the Beast

The book was re - published in 1975 by  Jeanne-Marie Leprince de Beaumont and shortened the story down, naming it Magasin des Enfants (1756). Many people today would be more familiar with Beumont's narrative and structure. "Although similar in the overall plot, Beaumont changed many aspects of Villeneuve’s original, making it more suitable for younger readers."  (Pook Press, n.d) 
There have been countless versions and re- makes of the Fairytale since then. 

Figure 3. Beaumont's Beauty and the Beast (1756)

The story much later was noticed by Disney and inspired their animated classic of Beauty and the Beast (1991). "As a testament to this story’s ability to inspire and entertain generations of readers, the tale of Beauty and the Beast continues to influence popular culture internationally, lending plot elements, allusions and tropes to a wide variety of artistic mediums.  It has inspired some of the best fairy tale adaptations in film, from Jean Cocteau’s 1946 masterpiece to Disney’s Beauty and the Beast (1991), a nominee and winner for ‘Best Motion Picture’ by several Hollywood organisations." (Pook Press, n.d)

26 years later Disney made a live action version of the animated film. They cast the famous Harry Potter actress Emma Watson as Belle and Dan Stevens from Downton Abbey as the Beast. 
Although the live action film is very similar to the original animation there were some differences that were evident in the visual effects and story line. There was greater focus on the characters back story and the viewer learnt more about about Belle's and the Beast's past lives.

In the animated film we have no information as to why Belle's mother is absent but in the new version, we learn of her death. "The reveal occurs when the Beast shows Belle a magical book that lets them travel to anywhere in the world, and she wishes to see her childhood home in Paris with fresh eyes. The two then discover a beak-shaped plague mask, and Belle later reassures Maurice about the truth he was never able to discuss." (Lee, 2017)

At the very start of the story we learn about how the selfish and spoiled Prince became a beast, after  he had been cursed by an enchantress disguised as an old lady. This is identical to what happens in the animated film. However he is not only cursed for refusing  the old lady have shelter.

"It’s not just about refusing an old woman shelter in a storm, which is what happens and triggers the curse, but there’s a lot of behavior leading up to that — there’s something not quite right in his heart, and it needs to be put right," Stevens told THR. "Something Bill, Emma and I wanted to put out is this sense of entitlement and privilege of this spoiled prince who was raised wrong, really, and left to grow into a monster, a hideous man child. It makes for a more interesting journey." (Dan Stevens, who played the Beast) 

In both films Maurice is captured and imprisoned by the Beast. However, in the live action version he isn't caught inside the castle but outside the castle instead, picking a rose for his daughter Belle. Interestingly this is similar to the very original fairytale by Villeneuve and Beaumont. "The change in motivation for Maurice's imprisonment is a switch back to the original fairy tale, written by Gabrielle-Suzanne Barbot de Villeneuve and later slightly changed and released again by Jeanne-Marie Leprince de Beaumont. Plus, intruding is one thing, but trespassing and theft are another." (Lee, 2017)

Figure 4. Film Still

The film also includes a new character named Madame Garderobe: "Maestro Cadenza, a musician who is transformed into a large and ornate harpsichord on the first floor. He is married to Wardrobe — now named Madame Garderobe (pictured above) — who is housed in Belle's room on the second floor." (Lee, 2017) As well as additional characters there were also additional songs added to the film such as "Days in the Sun", "How Does a Moment Last Forever?" and "Evermore."

To include all the films original characters they needed to use visual effects such as Computer Animation and CGI for  the Beast's appearance. 

Dan Stevens needed to wear a full body suite and bouncy shoes for the hooves, whilst playing the Beast. 

"Rather he was encased in an oversized body suit that resembles Wolf from Gladiators if he dressed up as Dwayne Johnson for Halloween. On top of that, Stevens had to walk around on bouncy shoes which were then swapped out for his talon-y hooves in post-production." (White, 2017)

Figure 5. Dan Stevens as the Beast 

The producer realised that there would be some limitations when making a live action version of the film."The most difficult part was both honoring the original animated film and also giving it its own identity, but there's also a lot you can get away with in animation that you can't get away with in live-action." (Producer David Hoberman)

Despite this challenge, the film did incredibly well, making 1.264 billion USD at the Box Office. The film kept to the animations authenticity whilst adding more detail and depth to its visual effects and story. 

Illustration List
Figure 1.
(Accessed 4.12.17)

Figure 2.
(Accessed 4.12.17)

Figure 3.
(Accessed 4.12.17)

Figure 4.
(Accessed 4.12.17)

Figure 5.
(Accessed 4.12.17)

Beauty and the Beast (1991) [DVD]

Beauty and the Beast (2017) [DVD]

Lee A (2017) 'Beauty and the Beast': 9 Differences Between the Live-Action and Animated Movies — and Why They Matter
(Accessed 4.12.17)

White A (2017) Dan Stevens wears hilariously enormous body suit in pre-CGI Beauty and the Beast footage 
(Accessed 4.12.17)

Pook Press (n.d) The History of Beauty and The Beast
(Accessed 4.12.17)

Monday, 27 November 2017

Thumbnail Storyboard - Progress so far

I need to figure out the ending to my story, I want it to be surprising and unexpected.

Frames 1 - 6
Frame 7

Saturday, 25 November 2017

Serial Killer with Piers Morgan (2017)

Piers Morgan interviews a convicted killer, Mark Riebe who has admitted to killing 12  women.
"Mark Riebe, 56, is currently serving life in a Florida prison for the 1988 murder of pregnant mother Donna Callahan - but just one year into his sentence he began to share gruesome details of multiple other unsolved murders."  (Corner, 2017)

Figure 1 - Documentary Advertisement

At the start of the documentary Piers only states the facts about the cases made against Mark Riebe and doesn't seem to have any motives about finding out the truth. He just simply tells the story. Piers even says to one of the inspectors, named Dennis Haley "What would you like me to ask him?" Dennis Haley has committed his life to investigating the murders.

When Morgan begins the interview, he remains very calm and somewhat friendly towards Mark Riebe. However he is persistent with his questions and gradually more persuasive. This unfortunately results in Mark Riebe being uncomfortable and wanting to stop the conversation. Piers quickly sees the situation is becoming more intense making Mark less responsive to his questions. Piers even says to mark that he'll "show more respect"  but we know he's going back to his "friendly state" to get more answers.

Figure 2 - Documentary Film Still

After Piers states in the documentary that "it was just months into his sentence when he started to make a series of extraordinary confessions." his mode of address becomes more personal and direct as he hears of the gruesome details of his murders. For example he say's "I don't wanna be unfair on you Mark, but at the same time I do want to understand the mentality of a man, who would tell a grieving father whose lost his daughter that he killed her..."

Piers gradually shows his real personality as his patience is tested.
"The outspoken Good Morning Britain host wasted no time in challenging Riebe. Sitting close together, he confronts Riebe with photographs of his victims." (Barns, 2017)
The interview becomes more heated when Mark feels he's being interrogated and manipulated into giving answers:
Riebe responds by tearing off his microphone and storming out of the interview, telling Piers: 'Well you're wrong. This is over. We're done. I answered your questions.'
Piers continues to taunt him as he walks away: 'Why are you running away? Why don't you sit here like man and answer these questions? 
'I know I'm not a 110lb woman you can kill. You did kill them didn't you? You killed them all.' 
(Corner, 2017)

Figure 3 - Documentary Film Still

The program started as a documentary with Piers Morgan where he simply stated the facts on the murder case.  Mark Riebe, remained calm and un - emotional towards him, until the questions became a bit too personal and interrogation like.    Piers's  motive throughout the documentary was to gain the truth and a confession from Mark.  Piers, using different styles and techniques elicited different reactions from Riebe.  These techniques started with an apparent fake friendship but became more goading, confrontational and manipulative in its style.

Natalie Corner (2017) 'Sit here like a man and answer these questions': Piers Morgan Taunts convicted who said he had murdered a DOZEN other women - before recanting his confession
(Accessed 25.11.17)

Sarah Barns (2017) WALKING AWAY Murderer Riebe who confessed to killing 13 women storms out of Piers Morgan interview He admits that he is struggling to "get much of the truth out of Mark." 
(Accessed 25.11.17)

Illustration List:
Figure 1.
(Accessed 25.11.17)

Figure 3.
(Accessed 25.11.17)

Figure 2.
(Accessed 25.11.17)

Final Design - Cowgirl Bug

Cowgirl Bug - Final Design