Friday, 25 October 2013

Graduation! Postgraduate Diploma in Learning, Teaching and Assessment!

24th October 2013 in Athlone Institute - the second cohort of LIN Dippers graduate! Great to spend the day with Mick Mc Grath, John Ryan, Anne Marie O' Brien, Carmel Kealey, Nuala Harding and Miriam O' Connor. Sinead Bracken and Marion Palmer were missed by all of us! Great also to meet some of the families, who've been supporting us all for the past few years through our long (but hugely rewarding) LIN teaching and learning journey!

As I said to John Ryan as we sat waiting for the ceremony to commence 'we never thought it would end here'! And our teaching and learning journey doesn't end... Next stop 'The Masters'.

Thanks to all and well done to all!

Mick, John, DQ @back, Anne Marie and Carmel at front

The Three Musketeers

Unlikely Scholar!

2013 LIN conference!

A fantastic 2013 LIN conference on Thursday 17th October in the Ashling Hotel in Dublin! Inspirational presentations from Mick Healey (on 'Sustainable Models for Engaging Undergraduates in Research and Inquiry') and from Newcastle University's Colin Bryson and Ruth Furlonger on 'Engaging Students Through Partnership'. Ruth, Newcastle's Student Engagement Officer was, for me, the STAR of the entire conference - a recent grad who drives student engagement through student-driven initiatives! An inspiration to us all! Well done girl!

Other presentations I saw were NCBI's Antoinette Fennell piece on 'Facilitating Design Students engagement with older people and people with disabilities',  IADT's Clyde Doyle's presentation on 'Making Makers' and The Maker Movement and Mary I's Margaret O' Keefe's presentation on student placement in drama education.

Marion Palmer and Nuala Harding did a great exposition on the LIN Flexible Pathway and the LIN Capstone and I, for my sins, did my provocative presentation on IADT Animation's 'links with the animation industry - not a complete bed of roses'.

Thanks to Niamh Rushe, Marion, Nuala and the LIN team for working incredibly hard to setup and run a great day for us all. I emailed them that it was 'like coming home for the day, into the LIN teaching and learning family'. LIN and the LIN conference must persist in some way, shape or form for the future!

DQ does his provocative presentation at 2013 LIN conference

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Halle - Day 2 Session 1 - Mike Riemenschneider


session 1 Mike Riemenschneider (IAMA - DE)

Presentation of the Animation Talent Award

i won't bother you with the funding issues we had..
International Academy - non prof founded in 2004

we produced a lot of student films
started with 9 months and then cut that to 3 months - they had to be v precise

we have individuals, companies
the question was how can we attract people, attract students
how do we stay alive in the market?

can we do it alone? or do we need partners?

tried to find a niche - the idea was to create a festival but there are tonnes of festivals (260 animation festivals) in the world...
how can we find a niche...

maybe do something with music??

not starting with animation, but start with the music...

a web-based short film competition, where you can earn your production budget to turn your ideas into an animation film
warner set some conditions - streaming yes, download no...

design guideline - 
transfer concept into web and digital media
how can we bring everything together?

a few people were totally happy to give us music from their new albums...
but the lawyers were a little more difficult...

alan doherty plays the flute - he's from ireland but he lives in Halle - i met him by chance...

pitch video from students who're proposing their projects...
top 10 projects
pitching mode
then they communicate and find additional budget (through crowdfunding pledges)
building up a crowd and then find money
an ongoing process... (still live)

click to support the projects you like...
having found that you can buy 1000 facebook fans for 360 euros, we decided not to rely on facebook

through google analytics - we could see that we were being watched in 90 countries
LinkedIn a great thing to do..

how it's going right now?
they're in the middle of producing the top 10 videos
they needed to get 100% of the money before 20th October - if they're missing 5%, they get nothing (standard crowdfunding)

E2,500 euros is the main prize from ARTE

ARTE is the most important partner
a link with Adobe - unlimited licence of CrativeCloud for 1 year for 3 projects


we want to establish ourselves as a partner for the animation schools
we were asked if we can licence ATA for India - but I don't know if it's a real offer...

we have projects from
poland etc etc - crowdfunding platform

end of Mike's presentation

were you genuinely surprised by the worldwide interest?
also we're talking to samsung, canon

we will then support the finished films
the rights belong to the people who make the movie
but we can use the films for non-commercial projects

normally we'd be finished production, but that was postponed because of the flooding in Halle!

it will happen again next year - if you all help us, we will succeed!

Brainstorming in Halle!

GREAT brainstorming session to finish Day 1 of the ETNA conference in Halle! Topics included 'Student Project Management' and 'funding models'. Strong possibility that we'll establish a rotating presidency for ETNA - to impel our collaborations forward! A pan-European postgraduate animation flexible pathway beckons!

Tuesday, 1 October 2013

Halle - ETNA conference

Morning One of the ETNA (European Training Network for Animation Schools) annual conference. Good presentations by Richelle Wilder (script development for animation) and Keith Hopwood (music and sound effects for animation).

011013 halle

Richelle Wilder

animation has the widest demographic
animation isn't limited by cultural or social boundaries...

katzenburg 'the idea is king. if a movie begins with a great, original idea, chances are it will work...'

great ideas are rare...

the strongest ideas can be encapsulated into a logline, or 'hook'...

chicken run 'great escape with  chickens'
flushed away 'african queen with rats'
shrek ' greatest fairy tale never told'

when i ran the development department at aardman...
it was a creative forum for generating ideas...

sometimes the original idea FAILS when you try to expand it...

Scorcese said 'there's no such thing as simple. Simple is hard.'

pitch: plot, characters, world, tone...

now we're talking about leprechauns...
but Katzenburg didn't like it 'and all our leprechaun ideas left with him...'

hitchcock 'all you need is a great script, a great script, a great script...'

the technical differences between writing for live action and animation are negligible...

writer needs to be hugely imaginative...
all the projects I've worked on have featured multiple writers... a lead writer certainly, but multiple writers...

we follow the three act structure...

it's important the bg designs and char designs are shared with the writer, to make sure he's on the same creative track...

andrew stanton... the first draft is nothing more than a starting point, so be as wrong and as fast as you can...

rewriting can be twenty paces back and five paces forward...
rewriting is about 'getting the story right'

rewrite is about making creative ideas the best they can be...
often multiple stakeholders involved in rewrite - all opinion is valuable...

however, multiple voices (if they're not managed properly) can destroy the script
in indie productions, this role is rarely managed...
managed, not dictated... Dictatorial no...

ideas often get put in the script to please the money people, to greenlight funding...

DEVELOPMENT HELL - the rewrite black hole...
caused by the writing process being poorly managed...
Many scripts get put into development hell, very few scripts get out

dev hell becomes an illogical dance, with lots of crap and random ideas being built into the script...

remember the project's potential, remember the hook...

billy wilder - an audience is never wrong. an individual member of it may be an imbecile, but a thousand imbeciles sitting in a darkened room - that is critical genius...


show don't tell

anim scripts are approx 80 pages in length, live ation are usually 100 to 120 pages...

character world themes and audience demographic

screenwriting is an art
screenwriting is also a craft

lasseter 'the art challenges the technology and the technology inspires the art...'

act 1 who is the main char what is the story about what is the conflict? (this is the inciting incident) first 10 pages, first 10 minutes
the suspension of disbelief must happen in act 1, the audience must buy in

want versus need is the character arc
the char want needs to be established early

drama is conflict...

act 2 longest in length
develops the action (A plot)
develops the main char
develops sub plots

it's essential to have more than 1 storyline

A plot is the action storyline
B plot is the emotional storyline
then subplots

there must be multiple plots, or the story will be completely linear

there can be multiple multiple subplots, adding texture and charm to the storyline

moving between acts is done by turning points - twists

act 3 is the climax
the central premise of the plot is resolved...
shrek gets his swamp back, but with an unexpected twist (fiona)

tv script format...
single drama
mini series (multiple eps)
returning series (many eps)

script development TV:

development workshop
outline - fleshed out without dialogue
scene by scene - again fleshed out without dialogue
drafts x 2 - dialogue in, story structure, basic structure is movie structure with beginning, middle and end (this is usually where finance is greenlit)
polish - final draft, often done by the script editor - script editor ensures continuity across the series

development by committee is a staple of modern TV script development
co producer
series producer

each of the stakeholders will want an active input in the series development (includes financiers, co prod partners and broadcasters), all coordinated by the script editor

all opinion is valuable, but all opinion is. 
an effective script producer or script editor offers the writer creative support and managerial guidance.

katzenburg: every single thing you see onscreen came out of somebody's creativity. It doesn't exist. Nature didn't deliver it to us. Everything had to be dreamed.