"Time and Time Again" Production Blog

Chronicling the production of the stop-motion animated short, "Time and Time Again" by Mike Bates. All images, characters, weird machines, etc, Copyright 2003-2007.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Okay. Right. This Blog.

So a year ago around this time I began my "break" into the animation industry. And it's been going really great! Special thanks go to Carl Willat and Leo Martinez! Right now I'm a CG animator at the game company Nihilistic in Novato working on "Conan". Yay animation!

Of course all this real work hasn't left a whole lot of time for Time... and Time Again! But things are getting done, believe it or not. The trailer I think was a nice exercise in post production, getting to edit some footage and make some music. It's made me think of a lot of stuff I can do with the final film as far as mixing, editing, presentation. Good practice.

So now I have some good news and bad news. As I draw closer to completion, there are less things to blog about (as you have seen!) since I've just been making and shooting a bunch of little things that would seem redundant here. Also, I'd like to save some anticipation for the film itself.

Does that mean the end of making-of info? I should hope not! What I'd like to do next is somehow incorporate the making-of stuff in this blog, along with new info, into a detailed credits page where each person who helped out gets the specific attention they deserve about what they did, and where they can be contacted if they wish. Which leads me to my next attention-grabbing paragraph:

Attention All Time And Time Again Crew!!!!!
Hi everybody! It's been a while, hasn't it!! Heh heh. :) Well the film is closer to completion than when we first started! And when it does come out, I'd love to be able to give credit where credit is due. My goal is to avoid a list of tiny unreadable credits at the end of the film, and instead, put a url at the end of the film telling people where to go for the credits. (Including my own!) So, this is a call to get important info about what you did and what you're doing now! Can you send your current contact info (website, email, etc.), the long list of what you did on the film, and even any pictures or anecdotes or whatever else you'd like to see on this new page to reluctantagent AT gmail.com? Thanks a lot everybody! Looking forward to hearing from you!

So here's a little more making-of stuff for y'all:

This is so cool. I don't know when Sculpey started making this, I only found it a couple weeks ago. It's Sculpey Frim! As we all know, in stop-motion keeping things still is a must. I use Proproxy (usually found in the plumbing section) as a base when I want to build something that shouldn't move and will stay together under a lot of stress. The only drawback is it smells, and probably is, pretty toxic. So I usually have to go outside, wear gloves, and get my sculpting done in 5 minutes, the time it takes for it to become rock hard. But it seems Sculpey Firm may change all that. I did a test baking around some aluminum wire, a task other Sculpey products usually crumble under when you move the wire. It worked great! It's like combining the ease of use of Sculpey (being able to sculpt however I like, then bake out in a toaster oven in the garage [in a little foil tent as to avoid direct heat!], so I don't have to be around for the toxic fumes it lets off when hardening) with the functionality of Proproxy. Nice!!

Happy Fabricating!

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Hello Blogreaders!

Okay, so big news today: big "T", little "railer"! That's right, it's trailer time! Check it out!

Okay, you may be wondering, well what does this all mean? New site? New trailer? No new posts for months? What's up with that?

Okay so, yes, there is a new site, and I'm going to keep this production blog off of it for a little while until I figure out where it should go, and how it should go there. You see, in drama, sometimes it is necessary to preserve that illusion of the "forth wall". And if I immediately show all this behind the scenes stuff with the trailer, it can get to be a little much. But if one happens to find it, more power to them! But beware, there are spoilers inside!!!!

Okay, another thing. On the new site it says "stop-motion serial." "Serial what now?", you may be saying. Yes, my goal now is to release this short in little gripping segments, suitable for efficient web enjoyment. So hopefully soon, you'll be able to watch new "episodes" in regular intervals! Ooh, fun!

As far as this blog is concerned, I will endeavor to update it here and there, so if you like the nuts and bolts of making stop-motion, stay-tuned! I'll try to put new and interesting info up when I can.

Oh, and say hello to "Robot"! Never before seen on the web!

Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, October 23, 2006

Now relocated to Dharma Initiative Hatch Number 5: "The Duck" ...

...Pressing the button every 108 minutes.

Well, not just yet. But this is my new place in beautiful San Francisco!

Sunday, June 25, 2006

Stop Motion Vs. CG: The Showdown!

Hi there, everybody! This is Mike checking in, and I have some big news: Apparently, I'm a CG animator! Someone's given me a job animating talking toothbrushes! Wild, no? But never fear, this is not the end of Time and Time Again by any means. Hopefully it will be a nice way to be able to continue the film. So, I'm excited. So far the transition has not been that bad. I think growing up in the Silicon Valley has helped condition me to ease into the world of computer animation. It also didn't hurt that I worked for hours and hours with splines on the Motion-Control rig at De Anza. But of course in the end, the most important thing is the animation and the computer, model or the pencil are just tools to get what you really want out of the story!

Here's a little CG animation to hopefully tide you over!:



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