AnimationNation Forum

AnimationNation


Post New Topic  Post A Reply
my profile login | | search | faq | forum home
  next oldest topic   next newest topic
» AnimationNation   » General Discussion   » Why Not Just Mail In The Script?

   
Author Topic: Why Not Just Mail In The Script?
Ravenshoe
IE # 186
Member # 783

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Ravenshoe           Edit/Delete Post 
Thoughts from the Sheridan Industry Screenings:

Assuming that everyone starts from the same place, that being a blank slate: There is no excuse for an incomplete film. Everyone starts at the same time. Everyone knows the deadline. Biting off more than you can chew is, dare I say it? Unprofessional.

I'd rather see a simple beautifully designed, mature 15 second piece than a 10 minute 'opus' slugged with storyboard and script notes.

One individual had so many slugs in their film that I finally said, "Just mail me the script." Sorry kids, there's no excuse. You knew the deadline.

As for the Anime...

Fight scenes play a minor - let me stress MINOR role in kids animation. As a writer on a popular show, let me quote a typical bit of script action:

"In a dazzling display of martial arts prowess, ________ ________ defeats her adversary."

That's it. Fights last about 15 seconds. An animator has to be able to animate MORE than fight scenes.

My 2 cents. Feel free to comment.

IP: Logged
Ravenshoe
IE # 186
Member # 783

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Ravenshoe           Edit/Delete Post 
And another thing, the beautifully animated CG film with lingering images of the female robot's crotch...

Listen kids, I'm no prude.

But, having said that... There's a time and a place for everything - and showing the lingering shot of the female robot's crotch -- to the lady who's interviewing you, may not be the best idea. Use some good taste and discretion when directing your film.

More 2 cents. Keep the change.

IP: Logged
Jasen
IE # 129
Member # 2721

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Jasen   Author's Homepage   Email Jasen         Edit/Delete Post 
Sounds like it could be a great movie,
"Robot Crotch"
starring Jean Claude Van Dame.

--------------------
http://jasenstrong.artstooge.com/
http://jasenstrong.blogspot.com/

IP: Logged
rdms
Member
Member # 692

Icon 1 posted      Profile for rdms   Email rdms         Edit/Delete Post 
Sheridan Industry day was long ... over 80 classical reels and nearly 30 CG reels.

I was remarking to some colleagues how the style of classical animation has changed over the past few years @ Sheridan - going from Disney-esque style to anime. The anime stuff was quite prevelant (especially during the first reel) but not well executed. If you're going to go with that genre then make damn sure the drawings are solid & dynamic. I was glad to see some UPA style films. And that stop-mo piece was fabulous!

Ravenshoe, I agree with you on that piece that had the slugs describing missing scenes - totally unacceptable. I thought to myself why am I not seeing storyboard panels instead? Do they not do leica reels and build upon them? [Gary]

As for the CG stuff, I must admit that I enjoyed the first year reel more than the 2nd year stuff.

Sadly, like every year, most of the films were incomplete. Though I wouldn't call it 'unprofessional' ... just inexperience [Wink] I have no doubt that the teachers warned the students about biting-off-more-than-they-can-chew but some students think they know better [Roll Eyes]

IP: Logged
Mindfulwhim
IE # 207
Member # 3153

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Mindfulwhim   Author's Homepage   Email Mindfulwhim         Edit/Delete Post 
quote:
Biting off more than you can chew is, dare I say it? Unprofessional.
Far from being your dazzling adversary Raven, and at the risk of sounding like I am "choosing you up", This is precisely what these students are in school to learn. College is suposed to be a safe place to try things, test limits, and to fail... miserably.

Perhaps higher education falls far short of it's promise to society, but education is a process, not a result oriented endeavor.

I know many a professional director that absolutely *cringes* at the thought of viewing their students films.

Some students finish, others are in process. Each student learns at their own pace, by their own method, and with their own, unique results (and mistakes).

Student screenings show student work. Personally, I love to see the process and growth of students over time, but then I am an educator for just that reason.

Penny for your thoughts?

IP: Logged
Ravenshoe
IE # 186
Member # 783

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Ravenshoe           Edit/Delete Post 
Mindfulwhim, I understand where you're coming from. I see your point exactly and agree with you from the educational, theoretical standpont.

However, the point of yesterday's screenings was to impress recruiters from various studios. This was in my opinion, a professional exercise - part of a job interview process. The course at Sheridan was set up to provide students with and 'almost' industry experience. From that standpoint - the unfinished films were, in my estimation, unfinished assignments.

When I'm hired to write a script, I'm given a due date. The script will be submitted, to the expected standard by that due date, or I can expect to be 'passed over' next time.

Mindfulwhim, you're right from where you sit. But I see things from a different perspective.


The crotch shot incidentally, was beautifully done.

IP: Logged
Andy Blazdell
IE # 150
Member # 2434

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Andy Blazdell   Author's Homepage   Email Andy Blazdell         Edit/Delete Post 
Ravenshoe, you're being unfair - are you saying you've never been tempted to fully animate a section of a script that you didn't have time to write the words for...?

[Big Grin]

--------------------
Andy
www.celaction.com

IP: Logged
SquarejawHero
IE # 188
Member # 2601

Icon 1 posted      Profile for SquarejawHero   Author's Homepage   Email SquarejawHero         Edit/Delete Post 
quote:
"In a dazzling display of martial arts prowess, ________ ________ defeats her adversary."
You know what? As a Storyboard artist I both love and hate the quick sentence that describes a sequence that could cause me both immense pleasure, or in turn, immense pain.

I can't count how many times a writer has written a paragraph explaining something which has ended up being a nightmare to board, or taken the entire thing over-time. Sometimes it's fun, but it depends on the context and what it describes!

I've also had things written that don't take into account space, time and pretty much XYZ when it comes to setting up a scene. But I guess that's just bad writing.

But I'm completely digressing. [Big Grin] In the context of a student film, don't bite off more than you can chew, I guess.

--------------------
Bowendesign.com

IP: Logged
Graphiteman
IE # 218
Member # 2092

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Graphiteman   Author's Homepage   Email Graphiteman         Edit/Delete Post 
I too have heard from instructors from other intstitutes about the plethora of fight scenes.
A well made fight scene may get one a job in gaming I would think.

That said, I too would rather see a short personal statement.

Nice to know (as in my day) there are some still peeing away time when they have a school-year to complete a film. [Wink]

IP: Logged
Mindfulwhim
IE # 207
Member # 3153

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Mindfulwhim   Author's Homepage   Email Mindfulwhim         Edit/Delete Post 
yes Raven, since animation is a profession, and a degree in animation is a professional one (even an MFA), I agree with you concerning professional standards of "quality" and certainly producers show up to cull the herd for the "best" talent, based upon their needs and standards.

I often wonder though, and this is from an educator's standpoint again, if the student's concept of "I had better create "quality" or else I will not get a job" seems to be a fear-based learning strategy. Fear is a very strong motivator, but as a teacher, I always get better work from students who are iinspired out of love (if you will), than fear.

I know that it's philosophical concept, and one that few in the animation industry have the luxury to ponder, but that's what academics are supposed to do...think, philosophize and ponder (sometimes our navels).

The students come to us with diff levels of achievement. I always grade student achievement based upon how much the individual has learned over the course of time, and I try not to judge their work based upon a comparison with other's work. That usually ends up being counter-productive to the individual student and often they end up feeling as if their work doesn't "measure up" which is a load of hooey.

I think each student should be in competition with her/his self to make the best art that they are able, and not in competition with others.

Apples and oranges (in the larger fruit bowl that is animation as a medium).

IP: Logged
Striker
IE # 210
Member # 470

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Striker   Email Striker         Edit/Delete Post 
Hey Raven, were you the guy in the Disney jacket with Larry??

I hear you about viewing incomplete films, but I have to say that the film shouldn't be the be all end all when it comes to recruiting new talent. For me, all it took was to see two or three really well animated scenes from each film, coloured or not, to know if that person had the talent. Heck, I could just sit and watch a reel of soundless pencil tests and still come out of there with a good list of people to hire!
Also, I have to say how absolutley impressed I was with the level of drawing talent some of these kids had. During the porfolio viewings I was constantly floored with the level of draftsmanship I was seeing. I want to partly attribute that to the newer staff members such as Terry Lenko (Disney layout guy), Charlie Bonafacio (Disney Animator, although not really a new staff member) etc. finally teaching people how to think when they draw and not just handing out assignments, but I think they're just 'observing' more and interpreting what they see exceptionally well.

At the end of the day we came out with a good batch of 'pocket' portfolios and a healthy list of people to interview.

Sorry I didn't get to meet up with you Raven, but I wasn't quite sure who you were, and I was being dragged from place to place by the people I was with. Maybe next time!

--------------------
Minds are like parachutes - they only function when open.
- Thomas Dewar

IP: Logged
papercut
Member
Member # 161

Icon 1 posted      Profile for papercut   Email papercut         Edit/Delete Post 
I'm going to play devil's advocate.

A completed film demonstrates a student has the ability to create an independent film, but commercial animation is an industry of specialization.

Not all great animators, are great layout artists, and great storyboard artists may be terrible animators. And I don't know anyone enrolled in an animation school, who plans to work in the ink and paint department.

It would seem to me, if a person wants to work as a storyboard artist, their animatic should flow like hot butter, and be crystal clear, before they start worrying about animation. And if their desire is to be an animator, they better focus on flawless timing in both action and character driven scenes.

There is only so much time in a school year, students need to focus on their strengths, and include just enough of the other areas to support their chosen specialization.

The old saying "Jack of all trades, master of none" comes to mind.

IP: Logged
Dan P.
IE # 248
Member # 893

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Dan P.   Email Dan P.         Edit/Delete Post 
I've gotta agree with SquareJaw about the writing in animation. Raven pretty much summed up the problem with his arguement. The writer describes a whole sequence in one small paragraph and the board artist has to make it all up.

That's not acceptable guys! YOU get paid to write the action, WE get paid to draw it. I don't expect every little bit of business to be described but I expect writers to give me a strong idea of what is going on. Even if it's a fight scene!

I had to get that off my chest. [Big Grin]

IP: Logged
bunny burgerman
IE # 138
Member # 2793

Icon 1 posted      Profile for bunny burgerman   Author's Homepage   Email bunny burgerman         Edit/Delete Post 
Of course the problem with a lot (not all) of writers is they have no idea how things will work in animation and they just write things that look good on the page and can't be done well at all visually. Sometimes I prefer a general outline of the action and then the board artist and director can figure out the best way to visualize it...just another point of view.

--------------------
www.pyatyletka.com
pyatyletka.blogspot.com

IP: Logged
papercut
Member
Member # 161

Icon 7 posted      Profile for papercut   Email papercut         Edit/Delete Post 
Oh! So there's no confusion ... even the devil's advocate agrees, there's no way in *ell a film should be slugged with script notes.
IP: Logged
Ravenshoe
IE # 186
Member # 783

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Ravenshoe           Edit/Delete Post 
Whoa, I step out for a few hours and you guys go nuts...

Andy - the answer is no. I live and die by story structure. Jim McCauley called what you describe, "a happening" - no story, things just happen. I'm not interested in that.

Squarejaw & Dan P. - about your dislike of "open" script descriptions. I see your point, but the fight is incidental to the story we're telling. I've got a limited number of pages to tell my story. I can't describe every punch and kick. Anyhow, once the dialogue is recorded the naturalpause and slugging dictate how long the fight will be so a blow-by-blow account is a waste of time.

Mindfulwhim, consider this: if your student doesn't get a job on graduating, who are they going to blame? You the teacher or themselves? Human nature will give you the answer.

There were some uncompleted films that gave enough insight into the student's work that you could really visualize where they were going, and their abilities. Some, but not all.

Striker - No, that was Rostrum (I think). I was the guy (glasses) with the glasses, black shirt with thin multicolor stripes and the way cool motorcycle jacket. I sat beside Larry during the screenings.

For the record, I'm much better looking than Rostrum. Next time, dude.

Papercut, very true. I'd have loved to see an animatic that flowed like butter. I've done pilot episodes that way - when it works well it really works.

quote:
Oh! So there's no confusion ... even the devil's advocate agrees, there's no way in *ell a film should be slugged with script notes.
Amen to that!
IP: Logged
rostrum
Member
Member # 256

Icon 1 posted      Profile for rostrum   Email rostrum         Edit/Delete Post 
for the record i am better looking than ravenshoe and I only sat beside him briefly when I was explaining story structure to him...

I sat further down the lane...

the three most common themes in the student films were: Death, Shoes, and Frogs....

for the life of me aren't cartoons suppose to be funny? I think it was an hour before anyone laughed.

IP: Logged
Ravenshoe
IE # 186
Member # 783

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Ravenshoe           Edit/Delete Post 
For the record, rostrum has more hair. Much more hair, but I chalk that up to a genetic condition.
IP: Logged
Striker
IE # 210
Member # 470

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Striker   Email Striker         Edit/Delete Post 
Yeah, there was alot of dark subject matter in the films this year wasn't there?

By the way, the best looking guy out of all of you yesterday had to be Larry. The slicked back hair and long black leather jacket was definately the bomb!!!! [tipsy]

--------------------
Minds are like parachutes - they only function when open.
- Thomas Dewar

IP: Logged
rostrum
Member
Member # 256

Icon 1 posted      Profile for rostrum   Email rostrum         Edit/Delete Post 
the dark themes were more than likely from playing too many video games and NOT WATCHING ENOUGH CARTOONS!
IP: Logged
Mindfulwhim
IE # 207
Member # 3153

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Mindfulwhim   Author's Homepage   Email Mindfulwhim         Edit/Delete Post 
At UCLA, we had to have our films completely finished (and on FILM) before we were allowed to screen them at the end of the year for the community.

Is that the solution?

IP: Logged
Ravenshoe
IE # 186
Member # 783

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Ravenshoe           Edit/Delete Post 
I'd say that would do it. If it ain't finished, the assignment ain't done.
IP: Logged
SquarejawHero
IE # 188
Member # 2601

Icon 1 posted      Profile for SquarejawHero   Author's Homepage   Email SquarejawHero         Edit/Delete Post 
quote:
Squarejaw & Dan P. - about your dislike of "open" script descriptions. I see your point, but the fight is incidental to the story we're telling. I've got a limited number of pages to tell my story. I can't describe every punch and kick. Anyhow, once the dialogue is recorded the naturalpause and slugging dictate how long the fight will be so a blow-by-blow account is a waste of time.

Hey, I'm not accusing you of doing it [Wink] , but it does happen more often than not unfortunately. Don't forget on some shows dial is done after the boarding too! Not the best way to handle it, heck but I don't like to complain as it gives me some freedom [Big Grin] .

Slugging on most of the shows I've worked on takes place after they've got the board. Things get edited out, but it's nice to have a little indication of the length of time and general action the writer has in mind.

They say it's better to do too much than too lttle... but we've often got extraordinarily tight deadlines to work on, and being given something complicated just like that can really throw things out.

I recently had a great script but with an action scene, described in less than a couple of sentences, which was incredibly pivotal. Let's just say it got solved in the end. [Big Grin] But it was tough making it fit.

As I said, it totally depends on the context, how the description is used and the show that you're working on.

--------------------
Bowendesign.com

IP: Logged
Map
IEcm
Member # 9

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Map   Author's Homepage   Email Map         Edit/Delete Post 
I went to Sheridan Open House today..and I like what I saw...it was a reel of finish films. About 15 to 20. Out of these films about 6 did stand out for me...I wish I did see the rest of the films. But I did go to the Leica reel screening back in Dec. So I barely remember seeing 80 leica reels then. I did talk to a few of the animation teachers today. I told them I like what I did see today and back in December. I really believe that the teachers of this last 3rd year classic animation did a great job in trying to get the students to produce great work..I wish them all the best of LUCK out in the scary world of animation! [Smile] [Confused]

I have to agree with RDMS about the claymation film..thats a germ for me.
I'm not trying to defend the anime influenced films you saw on Thursday..But you have to remember these students were mostly born in the early 80's. Today I asked a few students what year they were born in..1984. So I think most of them have grown up watching anime in the 90's. Just go look at the anime section in any HMV store...and you know why.
I guess some of you have forgotten what it was like being an animation student and trying to produce a short film and trying to get a job in this industry?

IP: Logged
SquarejawHero
IE # 188
Member # 2601

Icon 1 posted      Profile for SquarejawHero   Author's Homepage   Email SquarejawHero         Edit/Delete Post 
That's a good point. I was born in '77 and much of my influence comes from the toons of my youth - mainly Canadian/Japanese co-pros like Ulysees 31, Cities of Gold, the Moomins (both fuzzy felt and animé), Chuck Jones, strip toons like Garfield and later on in my teens stuff like Akira, Bubblegum Crisis and Totoro. I'd imagine just as the toons of your youth, whatever age you are, at least some influence in style is going to come from what you saw as a kid - be it Secret Squirrel, Fleischer Toons, whatever...

--------------------
Bowendesign.com

IP: Logged
Map
IEcm
Member # 9

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Map   Author's Homepage   Email Map         Edit/Delete Post 
Thanks Squarejawhero. [Smile]
I was born in 62 and I grew up on The Flintstones, The Jetsons, Yogi Bear and many other cartoons from the 60's and early 70's. Plus on Sundays I loved watching The Wonderful World of Disney. I couldnt wait to see what classic animated shorts were going to be on each Sunday night. [Smile]

IP: Logged
Squash Banana
Member
Member # 2700

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Squash Banana   Email Squash Banana         Edit/Delete Post 
I dunno: I was born in '84 as well, and my main influences were the big Disney productions of the 90s. I never got into anime until college, and now only some of it. In that respect, I think I'm an exception, because most of my peers are anime-obsessed.

With regards to completed quality animation, I'd like to invite you all to take a look at my friend Jo's nearly-finished project: it's a little over two minutes long, is extremely well-animated, and is executed in a light tone and WB-drawing style that one rarely sees from students (at least of what I've seen). I hope she won't mind the plug, but trust me when I tell you it's worth your attention. She's working her butt off and moving at a good clip, so I think she'll be finished by graduation (right now it's in completed pencil-test form).

http://www.cupojo.net/animation/JuxtaPencilWeb.mov

And check out her demo reel while you're there: it's got some really funny stuff on it, especially "Silesia."

IP: Logged
Evan Esparza
IE # 214
Member # 3171

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Evan Esparza   Email Evan Esparza         Edit/Delete Post 
quote:
You know what? As a Storyboard artist I both love and hate the quick sentence that describes a sequence that could cause me both immense pleasure, or in turn, immense pain.

I can't count how many times a writer has written a paragraph explaining something which has ended up being a nightmare to board, or taken the entire thing over-time. Sometimes it's fun, but it depends on the context and what it describes!

LMAO!! As a writer, I feel your pain and try to curtail some of my more 'flamboyent' sentences. It does remind me of Futurama, when in an episode Bender and Fry take the Planet Express ship for a joy ride across the globe (China, San Fran, NY, Italy) in a matter of about 30 seconds. During the commentary CG director Scott Vanzo said how his mouth droped to the floor when he saw the sentence or two of this scene in the script. Only to be rebuffed by episode writer Mark Ervin that "it was remarkably quite easy to write!"

Just a little feel-good, cutesy story for a LAAAAAAAZY Sunday.

Evan

IP: Logged
SquarejawHero
IE # 188
Member # 2601

Icon 1 posted      Profile for SquarejawHero   Author's Homepage   Email SquarejawHero         Edit/Delete Post 
I'd had loved to had taken that on! [Big Grin] If only anything which requires visual invention to that level is great to do.

And "lazy Sunday", eh? I've been working... [funny]

--------------------
Bowendesign.com

IP: Logged
timidbull
Member
Member # 2371

Icon 1 posted      Profile for timidbull   Email timidbull         Edit/Delete Post 
I was born in 84, and I can't stand anime for the most part, only recently have I started to open up to a very select group of anime (primarily and right now only, Miyazaki's films). Map, I was one of the students you asked. In my opinion, a large number of the films were excellent, especially most of the final finished ones. So here's a question to you all, what stood out for you all who attended the screening? Be it animation, layout, subject matter, whatever?
Also, is there a reason that you guys are suggesting that the films shouldn't have such "dark" subject matter? I mean, I know for a fact that it's not a result (for most people) of playing video games. Some just felt that the story they wanted to tell involved such a theme. One that really stood out for me in such a context was the photo album one. Also, as long as the student(s) animation/layout/boarding etc. skills are shown, and they are capable of telling a story, does much else matter? (please don't take it the wrong way, I'm actually humbly asking the question, as a student, it would really benefit me to know these things).

So, any advice to those who are reading and planning on doing a film? Be as harsh towards my comments as you please, I'd appreciate some criticism as well though.

Thank you and I hope I have not offended anyone.
[Smile]

IP: Logged
Andy Blazdell
IE # 150
Member # 2434

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Andy Blazdell   Author's Homepage   Email Andy Blazdell         Edit/Delete Post 
quote:
Andy - the answer is no. I live and die by story structure. Jim McCauley called what you describe, "a happening" - no story, things just happen. I'm not interested in that.
Ravenshoe, I was just making an obscure surreal joke, I wasn't commenting on your writing methods.

I even put a big smiley after it!

Hope you haven't taken offense...

--------------------
Andy
www.celaction.com

IP: Logged
Ravenshoe
IE # 186
Member # 783

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Ravenshoe           Edit/Delete Post 
Hi Andy, Nope. I took no offense. I simply answered your note. Don't sweat it. [bow]
IP: Logged
Map
IEcm
Member # 9

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Map   Author's Homepage   Email Map         Edit/Delete Post 
I know I did ask your age Timidbull...I only wanted to give the age range of students there. I asked you and a few others.
I'm glad to see a student like yourself asking these questions to some of the industry people that did show up there last week. [Smile]

IP: Logged
LightwaveDave
Member
Member # 225

Icon 1 posted      Profile for LightwaveDave   Email LightwaveDave         Edit/Delete Post 
About this crotch...was it segmented chrome, with a snapping attachment that went CLANG! CLANG! KA-VOOOOM! SNAP SNAP SNAP!

Or was it like, just a lingering shot that went on too long?

IP: Logged
Ravenshoe
IE # 186
Member # 783

Icon 1 posted      Profile for Ravenshoe           Edit/Delete Post 
The latter. Long, lingering shots. Many of them. Beautifully lit and rendered, I might add.

One is an accident or oversight. 3 or more is a directorial choice.

IP: Logged


 
Post New Topic  Post A Reply Close Topic   Feature Topic   Move Topic   Delete Topic next oldest topic   next newest topic
 - Printer-friendly view of this topic
Hop To:

Contact Us | Animation Nation

Animation Nation © 1999-2012

Powered by Infopop Corporation
UBB.classicTM 6.5.0