Gypsy D

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First year over - Reflection

I can’t believe I’ve already come to the end of my first year of uni! It’s completely flown by - the tutors said it would. How right they were! It makes me nervous but feel even more motivated for the second year and everything that has to be packed into it before we leave or decide to take top up years (which so far I plan to do) 

In the first year we were said to experiment and find ourselves, explore new software and get a taste for different types of animation and find our own style. I feel as though I’ve done that, plus found a direction in which I want to take for the second year. I feel strongly that I would like to go down the concept art route of ideas generation and character design and really get stuck in to the core of the project, instead of being ‘the’ actual animator. I’ve always loved illustration, I love creating characters and making them come alive with personalities that can be reflected by expressions and great story-telling. 

So what have I learnt this year? 

A lot! I came to this course having never used any animation software before and not really knowing how much the design process involved, also I’d never used Illustrator before. I now know how to do all of those things, as well as picking up other skills like being able to communicate and work within a team, working towards deadlines, time management and being involved and outspoken in production meetings. Learning new skills has already given me confidence, and I’ve already got some work experience lined up for the summertime. I’m really excited about that!! Things are looking good! 

What will I be doing over the summer?

As well as getting myself a job (like most of us poor students!) I’ll be trying to get more work experience with animation companies, particularly working in the design/concept process if I can. I’ll also be updating my blog, working on my portfolio and also attempting to polish up on my first animation piece until I think it’s portfolio-worthy. 

Wow. A year over! The second year will fly by, I can see it now! But I’m looking forward to working harder, being challenged, getting out there and being even more professional. 

Schoooooool’s outtt….for….SUM-MER! …. Ok. Maybe not ((opens Photoshop))

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A good start to June!

We had an assignment due recently which was set in three parts. One of those parts included researching into an animation company of our choice that was based in Manchester. I’d heard a little bit about Kilogramme – a company founded in 2005 who have grown rapidly, working with the likes of the BBC, CBBC even Disney. After looking around their website and watching their showreel on vimeo (see here ….. ) I watched some of their short films. This one I loved in particular – It’s called Bon Appetite.

I love the aesthetics and narrative behind this and it’s something that I could see myself being involved in. This kind of work and styling always grabs me! 

 Check it out!

 So…During my assignment I sent an email to Kilogramme letting them know I was interested in the kind of work they do, and asked them if they had any work placement/shadow opportunies coming up. Why not! I figured it was worth a shot. I was really happy to receive an email back the very next day from Jon Turner asking to see some of my work! I sent a few sketches, plus the very first piece of animation I put together this year. The email was followed up by constructive criticism and the offer of possible work experience when they have a desk available! So Jon has told me to keep in touch. Very excited! In the meantime I’ve sent him some character design sketches that I drew up, which I thought I’d post here too….



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Inspired on a daily basis!

So much I wanna do and so limited time! 

An assignment due in 3 weeks, a new project on Monday, a book I’m dyiiing to read, a presentation to plan for Thursday…..Argh!! It’s all busy busy, but if I didn’t have it all I think I’d be bored. It’s good to keep the ball rolling. 

And on top of all that, other bits and pieces here n there. Every day I find inspiration in something I see, whether it be in a movie, on tv, in a book or a magazine or online. I save things and organise them according to style and genre so I can delve into them easily if I need inspiration.

Right now I’d really like to buy some inks and watercolours to create artwork like this…

I just love it! I don’t even think you have to be a good painter to create something like this, but just have a good eye for colour. 


I’ve never tried with watercolours before, but here’s something I did with inks back in 2009…


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May update - Unit 4 handed in!

Hey! I’ve not written anything for a few weeks so I think it’s time to update.

Welllll, unit 4 is over, my Infographics project was handed in on Friday. Deadline days are always manic. The classroom volume goes up by a million decibels and everyone is frapping. Frapping…is that a word? Microsoft didn’t underline so I guess so.

Unfortunately I handed my project in before I got a chance to take any pictures of my sketchbook to upload onto the blog. I was planning to put my storyboards on here, but other things took over. What I did manage to get though is a few screen shots…..(at the moment the video is too large to upload. I need to compress it) 


My Infographic was a piece aimed at students that are living away from home possibly for the first time and experiencing uni life and (for most) a bad change in diet. The satisfaction of mum’s home-cooking is no more and students are now out to fill their own shopping baskets. I tried to show how you can fit in 5 a day and that it’s not as expensive as you may think. I did this by using a compare and contrast method, for example - comparing the contents and goodness of a smoothie to the price and negative effects to a pint of beer (like in the third screenshot) 

The animation in total is 1min 30seconds and although I’m happy with it, I do see room for improvement, as always, but if I didn’t feel that way then I’d never be challenged…and that’s how we progress. 

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Today’s mission - nail these storyboards!! But in the meantime, I came across a DRAGON BANANA!!


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Quick poster - project related

This is a quick poster I put together on Photoshop as part of my Infographics project. This is to give me more ideas for how I’d like my animated information piece to look on screen. At first I was thinking to aim it at children aged around 10-13, but it seemed really difficult to aim something about healthy eating towards children that don’t really have complete control over what they eat - it’s the parent’s who are primarily responsible for their child’s diet. 

So, aiming it at the parent’s instead was the next idea with the topic of childhood obesity, but now I’m thinking to aim it at students and healthy living.

This kind of poster however doesn’t really say ‘student’ to me, so I’ll be developing this further. I’m thinking simple, vector and graphical right now, changing up the colours and seeing how it goes! 



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New project!

A day off is never really a day off when you’re designing. 

A few days ago we were given our new project - Unit 4 of our first year. Information Graphics. 

In four weeks we have to produce a piece of Information Graphics using Flash (DUN DUN DUNNNN!! Haven’t used it before!) It can be anything from instructions on how something works, to a world issue. I’ve chosen to do my info graphics piece on junk food and the bad effects it can have on children. 

So far what I have in mind is a piece about junk food that’s aimed at children and read by a child. For this I’m going to use my little brother to do the voice over. 

Right now I’m getting together facts and statistics on the percentages of junk food consumption in children and then once I’ve collected enough research and data then I’m going to think about the imagery that I can combine with that to get across the message I want.

Off I go! 

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Alice went mad in Wonderland…

I never know quite what I’m drawing until I finish it. I’d been looking at dolls earlier in the day and then a bit later I picked up a pencil. It started off resembling a Chucky doll…then it got pigtails…and a straight jacket. Imagination took over and then ‘Alice went mad in Wonderland’ =) 

Done in pencil, scanned and coloured on Photoshop. I did a few different versions to change up the colours and lighting. 


For this one (below) I was inspired by the lighting in the Saw movies. I wanted a light with a more bluey tinge to it. The bathroom wall got me thinking of Saw also. Although as far as the Saw’ness goes - a straight jacket isn’t much of a Saw trap and she still has all of her limbs! … Maybe in the next version I may hack an arm off! Niiice!


Filed under Alice In Wonderland

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I was in one of those moods last night where I fancied watching something fun and lighthearted, so I put on Monsters INC. It’s probably one of my favourite Disney Pixar movies. I love how the designers have taken the theme of Monsters and given them a world of their own where everything has been adapted. (Although I think the movie ‘Cars’ is a much better example of this)

I put it on and the title sequence grabbed me straight away. The colours, the style and the way everything synced perfectly with the music. Inspiring!

Filed under Monsters INC

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Still messin’ with the poster

Developing. Trying the ‘less is more’ approach but still trying to keep an Indian feeling. For colours I was thinking henna tones - deep browny reds. Golds and reds are some of my favourite tones together and to me represent India the most.

My boyfriend said it reminded him of a wedding invitation =)


I think what I like about this is the fact that it still has an Indian feeling without stating the obvious through imagery like with the girl (below) … although I’m still happy with that poster.

I did this piece in Photoshop and Illustrator by using a cutout mask of the shape I drew up and scanned in and then put it over the textures I’d prepared. 

Now for the typography… 

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Potential movie poster design

Today I’ve been working on a movie poster for the film I did a title sequence on for my last project. The movie I chose was Slumdog Millionaire. 
For inspiration first I looked at existing posters for the movie and then looked at traditional Bollywood posters. I chose to go more for the traditional Bollywood hand-made/painted style poster because it best conveyed the style of my title sequence…plus I’m not so strong on the graphical side of things…yet.
I used scanned in textures and a drawing I did then put together my poster in Photoshop using lighting effects, overlays and brushes. 
One of the textures I used was a high quality photograph of my bag, which I overlayed with other textures.

Below there are two versions of my potential poster. I went through a lot more, developing them along the way but these were the best two I think. I’m not sure of my final choice yet, but I’ll probably be changing things around more before I make a decision. 


Filed under Indian Slumdog Millionaire Movie poster