March 31, 2014

Illustration Friday: Sizzle

Another Illustration Friday.  Someday I'll do...not a pin-up.  Tried a more sketchy- forties approach.

Daily Crapbook: Logo Sketch

Sketch for a logo I'm working for a fabulous friend.

Daily Crapbook: StuntLady Sketches

Working out something for my sister's new business card.  She's a StuntLady!

March 30, 2014

Daily Crapbook: You Smell Pretty

Monkey Rag Free Art Friday for the Atlanta Film Festival

Its been a long time since I dropped any free art, so in anticipation of the screening of "Monkey Rag" in the Animation Block of the Atlanta Film Festival on Tues April 1st 5:00pm at Seven Stages, I'm going to be spending the next couple of days dropping Mitzis and Spankos around town.  Look for clues on Twitter by following me @jothezette or searching #FAFATL.

March 29, 2014

Favorite Cartoons Growing Up #4: Noozles

Its been a minute since I thought about my favorite cartoons list, so I thought I'd jump back into it today.  "Noozles" was a Nick Jr. show I remember because I loved the premise.  A Japanese import set in Australia, the main character Sandy had a stuffed koala which wasn't just a toy but actually a living being from another dimension populated entirely by koalas.  Sandy could visit anytime she but only disguised as a koala because humans were hunted as game or something.  Oh, and the pink koala could fly and had a magic bag and hated Sandy for some reason.  And Sandy's father was an archeologist who was lost in space... Seems pretty dense for a baby show on Nick Jr. now that I think about it.   Oh, I also remember she had a lightswitch next to her bed which I thought was darned convenient as a five-year-old. An odd premise, but I loved the extra-dimensional escapism and the idea your stuffed animals were real.

March 28, 2014

More Monkey Rag Screenings!

There are a glut of screenings coming up.  If any of these are near you, please check it out!  Also, the Atlanta Film Festival is this week, and I'll be taking the walk down the street to attend the screenings.  Come on by and say hi!

Toronto Animation Arts Festival [Toronto, Canada ] June 14-16, 2014
Norwich Film Festival [ Norwich, England ] May 6-13, 2014
Chicago International Movies and Music Festival  [Chicago, Illinois, USA ] May 1-4, 2014
Myrtle Beach Film Festival [Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, USA ] April 26, 2014
West Chester Film Festival [ West Chester, Pennslyvania, USA ] April 25-27, 2014
On Location: Memphis Int'l Music and Arts Fest [ Memphis, Tennessee ] April 24-27, 2014
Animation Hall Of Fame Savannah Int'l Animation Festival [ Savannah, Georgia, USA ] April 24, 2014
Int'l Festival of Animated Film [ Stuttgart, Germany ] April 22-27, 2014
SENE Film, Music and Arts Festival [ Providence, Rhode Island, USA ] April 26, 2014
Boston Int'l Film Festival [ Boston, Massachusetts, USA ] April 20, 2014
Animation Torrent [ Park Ridge, Illinois, USA ] April 17, 2014
Tiburon Int'l Film Festival [ Tiburon, California, USA ] April 10-18, 2014
Rochester Int'l Film Festival [ Rochester, New York ] April 10-12, 2014
Charleston Int'l Film Fest [ Charleston, South Carolina, USA ] April 9-13, 2014
RINCON Film Festival [ Rincon, Puerto Rico ] April 7-14, 2014
Kansas City Film Festival [ Kansas City, Missouri, USA ] April 5-13, 2014
WORLDFEST Houston Int'l Independent Film Festival [ Houston, Texas, USA ] April 4-13, 2014
Big Easy Int' l Film & Music Festival [ New Orleans, Louisiana, USA ] April 4-6, 2014
Crossroads Film Festival [ Jackson, Mississippi, USA ] April 3-6, 2014
Atlanta Film Festival [ Atlanta, Georgia, USA ] March 28-April 6, 2014

Illustration Friday: Red

Gonna start trying to do illustration Friday.  I guess I got this one in under the gun.

March 27, 2014

Daily Crapbook: Demons Come At Night

Trying to make new shapes by painting instead of drawing.

March 26, 2014

Daily Crapbook: Pink Boots

For this week's GirlsDrawinGirls.

March 24, 2014

Daily Crapbook: Usherette

Usherette for this week's GirlsDrawinGirls.

March 23, 2014

"Anatomy of an Animatic" OR "How I Stopped Worrying and Learned To Love The Pitch"

A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to participate in a pitch for a career-making campaign for a huge client.  It came like a bolt from the blue, and even though I had two other jobs going on at the time, I knew I had to give the pitch a shot.  Although the pitch wasn't picked up, it was a very educational experience, and I at least wanted to share a little of my work.

The job was to be a series of cartoons and illustrations based on anecdotes about day-to-day life, told from the first-person perspective of various people.  The cartoons were meant to evoke a sort of down-to-earthiness with a warm sense of humor.  I've been wanting to make cartoons to people's storytelling for a while, so I was excited about this project.  The caveat was that there would be about a week's turn-around for every one-minute spot, plus supplemental goodies like animated gifs and illustrations.  For the pitch, the client supplied a script and asked for style frames and possibly boards.  My team decided to go all in and actually produce the animation, to simultaneously test the pipeline for ourselves and prove to the client that we could work within the tight time budget.  So that weekend, I worked out character designs.  There was already a time crunch, and compounded with my other jobs, I didn't have time for much exploration.  I pretty much went with my first ideas, just trying to get something appealing and warm and relatively simple.  


During this time, my team, the great folks at Dagnabit! (John Ryan, Lucas Ryan, and Robert Pope) created thumbnails and boards coming up with different takes on the material.  I then went into StoryBoardPro and made final boards to try and tie everything together, attempting to keep the animation simple but still leaving room to have fun.

  At this point, (I can't remember if it was Saturday or Sunday) I created some rough VO and slapped some swingin' Esquivel over it, fleshed out the keys a little bit and created this animatic.  It was difficult to get the timing exactly how I wanted in StoryboardPro, so its a little sloggy in places and I don't think it communicates my intentions as well as it should have.  I think in future I'll go back to Flipbook for more precision.  

Once I delivered the assets to Dagnabit!, they took the reigns of the animation and spent the next few days creating this charming piece, imbuing it with the warmth and care that comes from hand-drawn animation. 

Even though we didn't end up getting the job, I'm glad I had the chance to work with Dagnabit! and create something so fun so quickly, even if it took a while to recover from the work load.  I learned a lot of about how to approach pitches of this kind, and now I feel armed to attack the next one that comes along.

Daily Crapbook: Keep It Together

March 20, 2014

March 19, 2014

Daily Crapbook: Harem Spy

Playing with some brushes.  I have so many terrific new ones from Kyle Webster!

Daily Crapbook: Pen Sketches

I'll call her...Bessie Mae Mucho.  Did I just steal a joke out of Carmen SanDiego?

Daily Crapbook: YTDMN

Yes, yes, I know.  I'm tired- leave me alone!

March 18, 2014

Daily Crapbook: Circus Strongwoman

Circus-themed girlie for this week's GirlsDrawinGirls.

March 17, 2014

Daily Crapbook: Happy Belated Pi Day

I'm behind on everything.  Trying not to care.  Have some pi!

March 14, 2014

Daily Crapbook: Mermaid & Dolphin

Sometimes I get antsy when I have a long stretch of not drawing anything decent- so stayed up past my bedtime to draw this mermaid for last week's GirlsDrawinGirls.

March 12, 2014

Daily Crapbook: PPPHLALLPTH

No time to draw but sketch anyway so sleepy blah blah blah...

March 08, 2014

Everything About The Lego Movie Is Awesome!!!

Could I boast for a moment?  Its no big thing to claim that "Lego Movie" is ultra-super-mega-uber-hotdog-awesome, but I'd like to lay down that I knew it was going to so be from the get-go.  While skeptical friends rolled their eyes at the previews, I'd grab them by the collar and slam them against the wall and opine thusly: "You don't understand!  You all don't understand!  Its going to be awesome!" Because Phil Lord and Chris Miller, more than anyone else I can think of, have just about the keenest wit and understanding of what makes animation fun these days.  Their MTV cult classic "Clone High" is just about the funniest television I've ever seen, so dense with jokes it takes multiple viewings just to catch everything.  That Lord and Miller were able to retain that weird, lateral humor into family friendly-fare like "Lego Movie" and both of the Cloudy movies is hugely commendable.  But what I love does not end with the writing- and thats why I love these properties so much.  The animation is fun.  I mean with the deep sense of gravitas- it is so important to me for animation to be FUN.  Fun in the way I thought it was fun when I was a kid.  And fun animation is a theme with these guys.  "Clone High" is very limited animation, but so expertly timed and posed and I could, and often do, watch it on a loop.  And that precision and economy of movement was still apparent in the bigger-budget fare of "Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs, while being augmented by the wild, floppy, Muppety bursts of motion that distinguishes Cloudy from everything else out there.  You know those animators were encouraged to experiment, push extremes, create their own physics, and generally have a blast with those digital puppets.  "Lego Movie" is the same, and the broad, sharp acting works in concert with its weird, yet very thoughtful story that caught me off-guard.   I applaud Phil Lord and Chris Miller and everybody on the crew for understanding that fun animation is as important as funny jokes and a engaging story.  "Lego Movie" has everything right.  Everything about it is awesome.