Animated Museum Gif

Small animated gifs dominate the internet on social network feeds, so it was no surprise that cultural institutions like Museums had the opportunity to create their own fun content and hashtag it with #MusGif on April 12th 2017.

Not only is it fun to do, but it gets you looking closer at a Museum collection and artworks. With this in mind I entered into the spirit and visited Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery seeing a variety of art and sculptures and also taking photo snaps from their, ‘Night in the museum’ and ‘I Want I Want’ exhibitions. Having taken a collection of photos I settled on using four artworks, or sculptures, namely, Jacob Epstein’s Fallen Angel and Rock Drill, Fiona Rae’s Dark Star painting and Henry Moore’s Warrior sculpture.

It’s amazing to think that Epstein’s original sculpture was created in 1913 as it wouldn’t look out of place in a modern day Star Wars film. My inspiration was the internet ‘Dab’ move craze, so again after getting reference video from my daughter, I then created a six second animation which became the alien dab attack gif. Enjoy!

Alien Sculpture Dab Attack!

Shakespeare Sketches

First of all Happy World Theatre Day! So with this in mind I’ve set up a new twitter account @shakespearepics. You can see some of the latest tweets on the right hand side.  I’m also in the process of setting up a new website for Shakespeare Sketches, because after the interest in my six second history mini animations using old library archive pictures I’m thinking of creating an animated book full of Shakespeare quotes from his famous plays. This may yet turn into a funded project if I can persuade the various interested parties. Watch this space!

David Bowie Concept Adobe Animate CC Authored Game

With this being the first anniversary of David Bowie’s death it’s an opportunity to reflect, but also to try something new and creative in the spirit of Bowie. With this in mind I turned to Adobe Animate CC. I was a great fan and advocate of Flash back in the day, but of course Steve Jobs signalled the death knoll for Flash a few years ago and subsequently the industry gave it the thumbs down, although it’s still used extensively for animated content etc.

However, not a company to rest on its laurels Adobe rebranded Flash last year as Animate CC. It’s got improved features for animators, plus it’s now even easier to collaborate with other Adobe products, such as Photoshop, Illustrator and After Effects. Importantly you can now take all your Flash created assets and convert them into interactive HTML5 canvas ready content. I also like the fact that in quite an assortment of mobile graphic design apps you can create your content and export it as SVG vectors, which means Animate CC can import it straight in.

When you convert assets from Animate CC to HTML 5 formats your content converts without any additional work, but you will need to recode any Actionscript 3 programming code to Javascript, however, this turns out not to be too arduous, so I’ve created a working Bowie concept game for modern browsers by way of tribute to the rock legend! I may even blog about how I created it.

Animated Animations – Made With Animate

So February 2016 saw the launch of the rebranded version of Adobe’s Flash CC software, appropriately now named. ‘Adobe Animate CC.’ As part of the launch Adobe streamed a week of tutorials, demos, games design etc on Twitch using this new version of the software. They also invited Twitter users to create animations using the software and post them with the hashtag, ‘#MadeWithAnimate.’

Naturally I entered into the spirit of the challenge and created a few short animations, one of which was an extension of a Daleks at War story idea I’d had a while back. I used the idea of the Flash logo infiltrating the Dalek city, gradually wiping out growing Daleks, seen slowly spawning from growth tanks dotted around the city. When this Flash logo was eventually exterminated I thought it’d be a nice twist to see the dead Flash logo regenerating into the new Animate logo and chase the Dalek in an angry, just woken up fashion, while still destroying any spare Daleks lurking in pulsating growth chambers.

I created the opening Doctor Who like introduction, in the style of the 12th Doctor’s timepiece using After Effects CC to recreate a dramatic effect with the spiral clock spinning and weaving from side to side, whilst the cartoony Dalek animation was created mainly using Adobe’s new rebranded Animate CC software. However, I created the Dalek and Flash/animate logo 3d sprites externally as individual pngs using Cheetah3D for the Mac to get all the 3D viewpoints and positions, then imported them into Animate CC, using the ‘Trace Bitmap’ function to turn them into vector drawings, so that they could be scaled and keyframes more easily.

The Dalek city animation is meant to look bright and bold, rather than use traditional dark, intense, monochromatic colour schemes, usually used and seen in Doctor Who to make Daleks look more robotic and menacing. I wanted this city scene to be almost like a kindergarten, because the idea is to have a guardian Dalek trying to stop its children from being destroyed. Enjoy!

One Proud Owner of The Tardis

The Tardis
Nick is his own Doctor Who Tardis

So usually when you have a big birthday and people ask what you got, the stock answer is more often than not, chocolate, socks and booze. However, on this occasion I can smugly reply, ‘well actually I’m now the proud owner of a Tardis,’ one that can stay in my garden and become a part of its natural development.

I mean how cool is that, how stupendously exhilarating was it to walk round to my garden and be greeted with my very own Tardis!! One to tick off on life’s bucket list.

Mr Spock’s Final Mission

So we learnt that Mr Spock, or rather Leonard Nimoy, the actor who played him in the original Star Trek TV series and in films has sadly passed away. Doctor Who has made many references throughout its long history to Star Trek. The Tenth Doctor, as played by David Tennant even flashed the classic Spock vulcan salute in, ‘Fear Her.’

In my own way I’ve paid a tribute to him with a short little stop-motion animation dream sequence featuring the Spock and Uhura Mr Potato Head characters. Live Long and Prosper, oh and err… enjoy!