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Song of the Sea

Share your views on the state of the Animation Industry.

Song of the Sea

Postby hcjehg » Mon Jun 02, 2014 8:52 am

Hello All

As you may have noticed the first teaser/trailer for Song of the Sea has come out.
Song of the Sea is the second film from the hand director Tomm Moore who brought us "The secret of Kells", Academy Award finalist 2010.

I also worked on this film and would like to share a bit of technical details about the production.

As you may know the film was entirely animated in TVPaint then colored and composited in the studio of the very talented "Digital Graphics" in Belgium.

There were 4 studios working on the image side of this production:

Cartoon Saloon, Ireland
Nørlum, Denmark
Studio 352, Luxembourg
Digital Graphics, Belgium

They were roughly connected like this:

Image (It is an early draft)

The film had the following milestones:

Pre Layout
Rough animation
Clean Animation
Ink & Paint

It worked like this:

First the Animatic was broken down into Sequences, Scenes and Panels, by using the editing system, basically making a track marking up each of those elements. Edl's exported and HoBSoft automatically build the corresponding production database, including an audio track for each Scene.
After sanity checks we started the system that would automatically:

1) Prepare a TVPaint setup with all relevant layer groups (basically one for each animation related milestone), background panels, and audio as decided in the production database.

And for each of the relevant milestones:

2) Transport the TVPaint setup to the file server of the dedicated Layout Artist (In Cartoon Saloon, Nørlum or 352 as decided by the production manager), and put on the To-Do-List of the relevant artist (Actually it would first be delegated to the relevant local Lead that would do the actual delegation).
3) The artist would do his magick :-), then mark the task ready in HoBSoft (No export, no FTP, no Excel, No e-mail).
The HoBSoft system would then automatically do the following
4) Do quality control on the TVPaint setup, e.g. to check that no resources had been included/referenced from outside the official file tree, that the duration is still in concordance with the current editing/director decision.
5) The TVPaint setup transported to the central studio (Cartoon Saloon)
6) Automatically rendered the layers in the Layer group corresponding to the milestone.
7) Produce media files for editing(FCP) and the production system. Transport the FCP media files to each of the 3 FCP's so they would always have up to date timelines of Animatic, Layout/Posing, Ready(for approval) and Approved.
8) Transport relevant files - depending on milestone - to the file server where the Supervisor/Director would be present, and allow them to do minor changes before sending to director or director approval. Retakes are of course also an option :-) In the process the Supervisor/Director can draw comments on the media files directly in the HoBSoft production interface.
9) Transport the files to the file server of the Lead/Artist for the following milestone (or back to the current one in case of a Retake)

All of this allowing the artists/supervisors/directors to do what we would like them to do the most: Super awesome animation :-)

Of course the workflow/render tools/files all depends on the production at hand. We define each step in automatically drawn diagrams like this:


All the circles with dotted outlines are automatic tasks. Those in green produces some kind of media to be approved. Colored arrows have different meanings, green => proceed when approved, blue, green and red arrows in the loops => do what is needed for approvals, brown/yellow/orange to do with approvals.
Here is a bit more info on that

OK, any questions, fire away, and I'lll try to answer as best I can :-)

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Re: Song of the Sea

Postby hcjehg » Mon Jun 02, 2014 11:11 pm

I forgot to mention:

Check out the directors blog:

Song of the Sea on Imbd french title is Le chant de la mer

Feel free to connect on LinkedIn:

Feel free to follow HoBSoft on LinkedIn:

Feel free to follow Cartoon Saloon on LinkedIn:

From unconfirmed sources I hear Song of the Sea will show in Europe mid December, and quite possibly before in US cinemas. Christmas presents coming early...


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Re: Song of the Sea

Postby hcjehg » Wed Jun 04, 2014 5:10 am

Gosh :shock:

I also forgot to include the link to the actual teaser/trailer. Where is my head...???

Here it is:

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Re: Song of the Sea

Postby Charles » Thu Dec 18, 2014 6:28 pm

Tom Moore's "Song of the Sea" will open in New York on December 19 2014 in New York and Toronto.

It will be screened in LA on January 9 2015.


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