Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Specialising and Learning Animation Test

I've re-branded a new logo to be presented to promote all my work, this should help people recognise a pattern of work that is relatively new and can promote my evolving Animation skills which will ever changing and with each new material i will critique and be taking any comments to improve the performance or principles of the animation.

Adapting to my craft  - The Ball Bounce Test (full)

Focusing on the principles of the ball bounce, i learned by going back to the beginning with that in mind i still have to learn, there are mistakes where the heaviest ball comes in on a bounce the air time is for too long, on the last second to the left of the action a hair appears, i know for next time.
Using Dragon i was able to draw out the arc giving a much more natural and belivable bounce. Dragon also has has a few updates which were more useful than before giving more freedom while animating to look through frames.

Learning resources


Since Bristol Encounter Animation Festival this year i've really been looking back on the advice people have given, Working at my craft by going back to the start and learning from the principles and the ball, Once i am more confident with the principles then put them into practice with a puppet and focus on the performance not forgetting the principles.

Friday, 6 September 2013

Freelance - 'A Teddy With An Opinion On #WhatMattersMost '

Huggable Commercial animation was the outcome of my new stop-frame animation showing 'Joe-Lew' the teddy Bear advertising the Newest logo for John Lewis for the new Digital Campaign to promote John Lewis Insurance calling on budding filmmakers to submit their own six-second stop-motion films on Vine, inspired by the brand's current TV campaign, which uses stop-motion.

Find Below the HD version of the Vine, making of below video.

'A Teddy With An Opinion On #WhatMattersMost ' from Gareth Hirst on Vimeo.

Youtube version below -

Show And Tell.


Heres the initial concept for the character 'Joe-Lew' after many sketches this easily became my favourite and ticking all the boxes, appealing to a family audience, instantly looked forward to making the puppet and reflects well for the Brand.

Of course Here is more into the character with the design and look mainly wanting to get the palette for the body complete before moving on to the Expression sheets.

The Expression sheet above was done quickly on photoshop but i really like the roughness of each of them that kind of brings them more alive with personality and character.

Making the 'Yellow-Belly-Teddy' puppet

At first i went for using foil for the body one reason being that it would be light but found that instantly there was various problem and getting the right look would be difficult.

So next i worked with Cushion foam to create the effect that i wanted, while the centre piece has the armature inside the outside was lined out ready for getting rid of the excess foam to allow the look to take form.

To make a Teddy head i...

The idea was ready but was only in my head so various designs were made then the last one to use as a reference for when creating the head was as above and shows exactly how i went about creating each layer of the head. I believe the only thing that got changed was how i tackled the mouth and instead of using replacement mouths the teeth stayed in place using yellow plastercine to mould the mouth in-between expressions which worked smoothly.

Heres the wire frame thats inside the characters head, cut fingers were worth the result to have a strong frame to build around with the rest of the face layers. There were three different thicknesses of wire uses to hold everything together.

Here i am so busy couldn't miss every photo, painting behind the eyes, nose and the mouth with a new model brush which made the job easier.

 First Snap of the cuddly ol' chap fully foamed and ready for final adjustments, without mouth.

First undercoat using spray paint before painting the separate area, not forgetting to cover the areas not wanting painting.

First coat of the colour he's going to become, found that using thin coats and building it up didn't work so thinker coats of colour without leaving gaps was needed.

Fully coated including Yellow Belly! Only thing i didn't expect was for the paint to take so long to dry.

All Logo icons used as props for the animation fully made and cut. Lined out with the rightful colours and ready to be used.

Dope sheet (X-Sheet) for the 6 seconds planned out and cut up into sections ready to animate, with character sheets and storyboards to follow, planning the animation comes more important than doing it.


Part way through a shot before the next logo was put in place and the character changes position, this animation including pre-production was done in record time as it was for a client everything had to be on point with that i created a new character to use as a marketing tool which was the 'Yellow Belly Teddy' and through learning throughout i'd do any project within reason to a better standard every time to a deadline.

Hope this was a good insight into my most recent animation and if you've enjoyed let me know there might be more into my way.

Thanks for reading - Gareth Hirst B.A Hons

"Enjoy What you do" GHAnimation

Thursday, 27 June 2013

Gareth Hirst Stop-Frame Character Animation Showreel 2013

My Speciality Stop-Frame Character Animation Showreel 2013 ©


Here is my 2013 Stop-frame showreel, all animation and models done my myself. The showreel has music from Carl Davis and B.B King which is also illustrated in the showreel. The animations that are used are my student film 'Street Act' improved ball sequence tests to show principles and my 11second club lip sync animation to show my ability to use expression and lip-sync but also the correct use of the x-sheet.

                    Gareth Hirst Stop-Frame Character Animation Showreel 2013 from Gareth Hirst on Vimeo.

After many tests and entries to various competitions i've decided a new showreel which shows my skills which i've dedicated all my time to and to become at industry standard. Over the next coming weeks there will be more blog updates and through ongoing pursuits will be fully up to date and have a new profile.

Lip-Sync Skills taking focus for the June 11 Second Club 'Oh Charlie' Animation

from left-James and mouthless Charlie
11 Second Club what a brilliant idea, two weeks before entry i wanted to create a lip-sync piece for my showreel with other things and thought what better than to get direct feedback from the animation community and find where my skills are in that area of Character animation my chosen speciality in Stop-Frame Animation.

First Step crack out some plastercine and create come expressive characters which are good for conveying emotion thats parallel with what the character is saying. What i should be saying is that due to time i wasn't able to create the whole figure but honestly i enjoyed the task of only using the faces for everything the restriction helped bring out a better performance i believe.

Poor chap tired from getting animated (James)
First thing before animating was creating the characters i was confident in and with that believable blinks, yes blinks are important after another test i did i realised i'd benifit from having a much better set of eye lids using two sets and one full closed as above.

What a stare.
Also seeing the full difference between expression, annoyed stare and suprised.


As always i am using my DragonFrame on my MacBook Pro, after many times using DragonFrame i believe my knowledge is extending everytime i use it getting the full benifit out of a brilliant tool. Using the Dope sheet ( X-Sheet ) for everything from phonetics to expression.

Really like this photo.
Another expressive shot which i believe was the last taken.
Only a couple of days till voting starts on 11Second Club for June, technically 4 days but i am not counting. For an exclusive watch of 'Oh Charlie' find my one slice over 10 seconds of animation which i am proud of which has been added to my 2012 Showreel which will be shown in my next blogpost.

Please let the animation fully load or it won't sync correctly with sound track.

Thank-you for viewing my Lipsync-Skills taking focus for the June 11 second club 'Oh Charlie' Animation

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