I don’t normally write here about my work, but things are so exciting that I want to record and share what’s going on.

This year, being the centenary of the outbreak of the Great War is getting everyone in the museum world  thinking about how to commemorate the events. So it’s not just Michael Gove’s little tizzy about ‘Blackadder Goes Forth’. There’s going to be a lot more discussion of the subject everywhere.

St Neots Museum is planning an exhibition and associated activities, including building a mock-up trench, making simple periscopes like the ones used by soldiers in the trenches, and some more stop motion animation. This time, however, instead of holding specific workshops for animation, which result in a lot of separate, very short animations, we’re going to leave a set, laptop and camera in place, so that visitors can add a sequence to an ever-expanding film.  Bruce, one of the museum volunteers, has built three sets which can be swapped out at any time. One is a seascape, complete with waves and deep Atlantic rollers, incorporating slots for ships and submarines to glide along and capacity for plumes of water caused by torpedo explosions. Another scene comprises an intricate trench complex with anti-tank defences, removable slabs for craters caused by bomb explosions to appear and simple paper tanks for children to colour, cut out and and assemble then animate.  The third set is for aerial warfare with cut-out biplanes ready for dog fights.  My next task is to draw up a storyboard to suggest ideas for sequences.

We spent last Friday testing the sets, which was a useful experience because Bruce could make some minor modifications over the weekend. We’ll shoot another series of tests tomorrow. Some people think I get paid to play, but I call it Research and Development. And yes, I enjoy it, but there’s nothing wrong with that!


Monday, January 13th, 2014 animation No Comments