Blogs in "Manimation Blog"

November 2016

Manimation 2016: Report – Showcase 2: Interactive animation in VR – Feeding Titanosaurs

Posted on: Thursday 17 November 2016 4:37pm by Tom Jordan

Speaker: Peter Caddock, Studio Liddell Takeaway: VR is going to be BIG! Detail: Peter Caddock showcased a demo of a VR piece Studio Liddell had been working on for the last month, entitled 'Feeding Titanosaur'. The demonstrator, Simon Smith, also from Studio Liddell, had a VR headset on, and what he could see in the headset was shown on the big screen. Delegates saw Simon’s view as he looked for a dinosaur, a 75,000kg herbivore eating from a tree canopy. As Simon looked around physically, he could see the whole 360º virtual environment. Simon also used his hand controller to pick up a branch and offer it to the dinosaur, which came towards him and loomed large on the screen.…

Manimation 2016 Event Reports Manimation Blog Feeding Titanosaurs interactive Studio Liddell Virtual Reality VR

Continue reading >

Manimation 2016: Report – Presentation 4: Hiive – Connecting creative with briefs, courses, jobs & more

Posted on: Thursday 17 November 2016 4:09pm by Tom Jordan

Speaker: Daniel Kemp, Executive Producer, Hiive Takeaway: Hiive is a new platform for finding and promoting creative talent Detail: Daniel Kemp gave delegates a brief overview of the opportunities Hiive offers for the animation sector. Hiive is a non-profit professional network for creative industries, and is part of Creative Skillset. There are currently 75,000 individuals using the platform, from across the various creative industries, and over 300 companies. The digital platform aims to help promote emerging talent and help freelance creatives pitch for work. Via the platform, Hiive can help companies commission creative projects through facilitating a pitching process, and can also engage its community en masse by running competitions, helping with crowdfunding for projects, and providing insight through research…

Manimation 2016 Event Reports Manimation Blog animation CMC creative platform creatives Hiive jobs Manimation

Continue reading >

Manimation 2016: Report – Panel 4: Money for Nothing? Fund and Flow

Posted on: Thursday 17 November 2016 3:48pm by Tom Jordan

Speakers: Steve Sharman, founder, Blackthorn Innovation (moderator) Erica Darby, Producer, Spider Eye Chris Halliday, Senior Certification Analyst, BFI Tim Patterson, CEO, Larkshead Media Takeaway: Brexit implications for funding are still uncertain, but confidence in your product remains key to securing finance. Detail The main focus of the discussion was the impact Brexit will have on funding for creative industries. Chris Halliday talked about the tax relief scheme for animation companies. His message to delegates was that the BFI are the first port of call for tax breaks for animation. He said tax relief has helped animators in terms of getting a foot in door with broadcasters, and also getting loans against tax relief to get that initial start-up. Knowing that…

Manimation 2016 Event Reports Manimation Blog animation BFI Brexit CMC finance financing funding Manimation production tax relief

Continue reading >

Manimation 2016: Report – Presentation 2: Realtime VR Storytelling – Heading for the Holodeck

Posted on: Thursday 17 November 2016 2:19pm by Tom Jordan

Speaker: Nick Pittom, Fire Panda Takeaway: VR presents challenges to storytelling – but also a virtual world of opportunities to try something different and create your own rules. Detail: Nick gave a whirlwind beginner’s guide to some of the technology used in virtual reality creation, and introduced some of the pros and cons of both Realtime VR and 360 VR platforms. He said there are still limitations to both, including time, man hours, cost, technology restrictions and even motion sickness, but the technology keeps advancing, which is exciting. Nick highlighted things to consider in terms of how storytelling differs in VR. On traditional platforms, the story takes place in a box or on a screen, but in VR the user…

Manimation 2016 Event Reports Manimation Blog animation Children's Media Conference CMC Fire Panda Manimation Virtual Reality VR

Continue reading >

Manimation 2016: Report – Presentation 1: The Red Carpet Treatment

Posted on: Thursday 17 November 2016 1:19pm by Tom Jordan

Speaker: Kath Shackleton, Fettle Animation Takeaway: It’s hard work running a small animation business – but with support from the industry and determined self-promotion success and good things are definitely possible. Detail: Kath Shackleton introduced the audience to her Yorkshire-based studio, Fettle Animation, which she runs with her animator partner Zane Whittingham. The studio specialises in 2D animation, and has won numerous awards for some of its films. Kath showcased a clip of some of Fettle’s projects, and then talked about the challenges that small studios face. These include, inevitably, the tightening of budgets in recent years from client companies. She urged the industry to make sure it supports small companies as much as they can, saying that there are…

Manimation 2016 Event Reports Manimation Blog animation awards BAFTA, BBC Learning Fettle Fettle Animation Manimation small studio studio

Continue reading >

Manimation 2016: Report – Panel 1: Animation UK Update

Posted on: Thursday 17 November 2016 12:35pm by Tom Jordan

Speakers: Oli Hyatt, Blue Zoo Animation Neil Hatton, CEO, UK Screen Association Kate O’Connor, Executive Chair, Animation UK Council David Sproxton, Founder and Executive Chairman, Aardman Helen Brunsdon, Director, Animation UK Takeaway: Animation UK is joining forces with the UK Screen Association to form a new body: the UK Screen Alliance. Detail: There was a major announcement in this session: the partnering of Animation UK with the UK Screen Association, the trade body for visual FX house, post-production facilities and film studios, to form the UK Screen Alliance. The UK Screen Alliance will become a membership organisation consisting of two councils: Animation UK Council and UK Screen Facilities Council, and an executive team. Full details of the announcement are available…

Manimation 2016 Event Reports Manimation Blog Animation UK CMC Manimation UK Screen UK Screen Alliance

Continue reading >

November 2015

Manimation 2015: Manimation ’15 Report – Training and Skills: Gaps, Levies and Commitments

Posted on: Tuesday 24 November 2015 11:01pm by Kath Shackleton

This was a lively panel discussion exploring solutions to recruitment problems, including schools, pre-Higher Education and apprenticeships. Belinda Peach (Peachy Media) introduced the session. This a really exciting time for the animation and VFX industries.  However, recruitment remains a big issue.  47% of companies in our sector are struggling to recruit new talent compared to just 5% in other sectors. Jean Flynn (CHF Entertainment) Explained some of their difficulties at Cosgrove Hall Fitzpatrick in recruiting animation staff for children's TV series production in Manchester. Erica Clarke (Creative Skillset) Described her work across the North, with a wide range of employers and educators and feeding their ideas into Creative Skillset's Northern Skills panel. Paul Bason (MMU) Talked with great excitement about the success…

Manimation 2015 Event Reports Manimation Blog

Continue reading >

Manimation 2015: Manimation ’15 Report – Masterclass: Thunderbirds Are Go!

Posted on: Thursday 19 November 2015 11:33pm by Tom Jordan

Takeaway: The new Thunderbirds aimed to retain the DNA of the original, but combine it with more modern production techniques: CGI characters and handmade sets and vehicles Working with a partner (New Zealand’s Weta) who understood what audiences loved about the original was essential High value was placed on sound, including a talented voice cast and big orchestral score The target audience was multigenerational Detail: Giles Ridge took delegates through the stages involved in remaking the Gerry Anderson puppet classic 'Thunderbirds', including how they dealt with the challenge of keeping the essence of the original while updating certain aspects of the production. Long-term 'Thunderbirds' devotee Giles described the moment ITV asked him to lead the remake as one of great…

Manimation 2015 Event Reports Manimation Blog

Continue reading >

Manimation 2015: Manimation ’15 Report – Wool: The Final Frontier

Posted on: Thursday 19 November 2015 9:54pm by Kath Shackleton

Mole Hill Co-Director ‘Clangers’ (Coolabi/Factory) What a joy to see a remake of an old classic dare I say to be almost better than the original! "Less like designing a show, more like refurbishing a grade 1 listed building" Clearly made with great love and care. When Factory approached Mole Hill about co-directing 'The Clangers' with Chris Titchborne, it was not without a hint of trepidation that they took it on. He loved the show as a child, and went about re-watching all the episodes. Peter Firmin, now aged 85 was very much involved and kept everyone to task, and Oliver Postgate's son Dan came on board, wrote half of the episodes and did a brilliant job. Deciding which aspects of the original should…

Manimation 2015 Event Reports Manimation Blog

Continue reading >

Manimation 2015: Manimation ’15 Report – Free Money? Fund and Flow

Posted on: Thursday 19 November 2015 9:48pm by Kath Shackleton

Rosemary Klein  (Compact Media Group) Introduced the session and asked "Is there any such thing as free money?" Christopher Halliday  (BFI) The BFI want to make sure you get money for your animation production from the UK tax system  - yes really!  They are doing all that they can to help you to claim what you are entitled to and can help all productions big and small. You can get up to 25% of your budget back from 80% of your production budget. Lots of information about how to qualify (and they really have made it as easy as humanly possible to apply) Everything is online at www.bfi.co.uk/certification There are specialist accountants who can help with more complicated applications. Mark Rowland (Compact Media Group)…

Manimation 2015 Event Reports Manimation Blog

Continue reading >

Manimation 2015: Manimation ’15 Report – LEGO Jurassic World

Posted on: Thursday 19 November 2015 5:50pm by Tom Jordan

Speakers: Ian Liddell (Studio Liddell); David Brown (Traveller’s Tales) Producer: Simon Smith (thumbfood) Collaborating on a gaming blockbuster: how two local studios (TT Games and Studio Liddell) animated one of the year’s biggest video games. Takeaway: Collaborating can bring extra layers to a production and help the creative process Choosing partners who have a similar vision and ethos is really important Good organisation and setting up a workable process before the project starts is the key. Detail: Ian Liddell, director of Manchester-based Studio Liddell, began the talk by highlighting what he felt were the essentials of a strong collaborative partnership between two companies: You need an organised production manager (in this case, Mrs Liddell!). All the mundane, day-to-day details need…

Manimation 2015 Event Reports Manimation Blog

Continue reading >

Manimation 2015: Manimation ’15 Report – Cubic Motion: Facial Capture

Posted on: Thursday 19 November 2015 5:43pm by Tom Jordan

Speaker: David Barton (Cubic Motion) Takeaway: Cubic Motion, based in Manchester, worked with Cloud Imperium Games and 3lateral to create the Admiral Bishop character, played by Gary Oldman, for the forthcoming Star Citizen/Squadron 42 game. Detail: David Barton, producer for Cubic Motion, guided delegates through the intricate, laborious and highly technical process of turning an actor’s performance into an animated game character. Cubic Motion are one of a number of north-west based outfits currently involved in production on a game called 'Star Citizen', which is due for release in 2016 and features actors including Gillian Anderson, Mark Hamill, Mark Strong, and Gary Oldman. Cubic’s area of expertise is facial animation, and Barton used video and game footage to explain some…

Manimation 2015 Event Reports Manimation Blog

Continue reading >

Manimation 2015: Manimation ’15 Report – Made in Manchester

Posted on: Thursday 19 November 2015 3:37pm by Tom Jordan

Speaker: Jonathan Ashworth (Mighty Giant) Takeaway: Motion North, the collective gathering for designers, animators, filmmakers and vfx artists presented the ‘Manimation Showreel’ – the very best of Manchester animation and motion design. Motion North: The Best Bits from Mighty Giant on Vimeo. Detail: Jonny Ashworth introduced Motion North, a collective which started six years ago as an extension of a conversation in a pub, and now puts together regular showcase reels of the diverse range of quality animation from Manchester and the wider northern region. The ever-expanding group meets every couple of months, and often has guest speakers from key companies based in London and beyond. The talks have a dual purpose: one is to provide motivation and inspiration to…

Manimation 2015 Event Reports Manimation Blog

Continue reading >

Manimation 2015: Manimation ’15 Report – A Dictionary of Content Finance

Posted on: Thursday 19 November 2015 3:26pm by Kath Shackleton

Speaker: Neil Court (9Story Media) Neil is a media entrepreneur with 28 year's experience - a serial investor setting up companies and buying into others. He is Executive Chairman of Canadian company 9 Story Media Group, which recently acquired Brown Bag Films. Neil also co-founded Nelvana Enterprises in 1987 and co-founded Decode Entertainment in 1997. He's been through highs and lows with great success, but with a failure 6 years ago which left him feeling that the children's media market wasn't for him. He took time out, started a few non-kids businesses but then met Brown Bag in Dublin and joined their board. Around the same time he also got involved in Nine Story, an excellent 2D animation company in Canada, which…

Manimation 2015 Event Reports Manimation Blog

Continue reading >

Manimation 2015: Manimation ’15 Report – Research: Play, Apps, Habits and Stats

Posted on: Thursday 19 November 2015 3:16pm by Tom Jordan

Speaker: Jackie Marsh (University of Sheffield) Producer: Helen Brunsdon (Producer/Consultant) Takeaway: Up-to-date academic research on the viewing habits of young people from Professor Jackie Marsh, expert in children and digital literacy. Age range of study is 0-5. Research took the form of a survey of 2000 parents and carers, case studies of 6 families, and was carried out in conjunction with Sheffield and Edinburgh universities, CBeebies, Dubit, Foundling Bird and Monteney Primary School, Sheffield. Detailed findings and figures are available to download from www.techandplay.org. Detail: Professor Jackie Marsh pulled out some highlights from her Technology and Play (TAP) research about the use of apps in pre-schoolers, flagging up interesting findings that may influence the approach taken by content producers. Full…

Manimation 2015 Event Reports Manimation Blog

Continue reading >

Manimation 2015: Manimation ’15 Report – Innovation in Tech, Process and Workflow

Posted on: Thursday 19 November 2015 3:10pm by Tom Jordan

Speakers: Gareth Williams (YellowDog) Wes Wood (ITV) Sarah Worcester (Motion Graphics) Tony Churnside (Knowledge Transfer Network) Moderator/producer: Steve Sharman (Hackthorn Innovation) Takeaway: Discussion on how technology does – and doesn’t – support the work of storytellers Creatives discussed how the ever-increasing raft of technology is hard to keep track of, and keep up to date with Software developers talked about how it is important to create tools with the end user in mind Audience members raised their concerns about the difficulty of smaller companies being able to have tailored tools developed for them There was a consensus between creative and ‘techies’ that often the software may be sophisticated, but not user-friendly or intuitive. Detail: The main question being discussed was…

Manimation 2015 Event Reports Manimation Blog

Continue reading >

Manimation 2015: Manimation ‘15 Report – Beyond Flesh and Blood

Posted on: Thursday 19 November 2015 12:56pm by Tom Jordan

Speakers: John Kavanagh and Seb McBride (Pixelbomb Games) Producer: Simon Smith (thumbfood) Takeaway: Pixelbomb Games is a full video games studio based in Manchester. The company is currently creating ‘Beyond Flesh and Blood’, an agile mech shooter for PC, VR and Console game set entirely in the city, 200 years in the future. Setting the game in Manchester showcases the city for the first time in a video game. The game will be available across all major platforms in 2016. Detail: Pixelbomb is an indie games developer based in Manchester, founded in 2011 by a collection of developers with the aim of ‘making awesome games’. The company’s aim is also to challenge the perception of indie games. ‘Beyond Flesh and…

Manimation 2015 Event Reports Manimation Blog

Continue reading >

Manimation 2015: Manimation ’15 Report – Opening Keynote: iPlay, You Make, We Share

Posted on: Tuesday 17 November 2015 10:00pm by Kath Shackleton

Manimation 2015 opened with great excitement in the spectacular new facilities of  Home Manchester, produced in collaboration with Manchester's new Animation Festival, hosted by Andy Wyatt head of the new animation course from Manchester Metropolitan University and Chair of the new Manimation Advisory Committee. Andy thanked the funders - MIDAS and the other partner organisations. The aim of Manimation is a knowledge exchange event celebrating the diverse work in the region, bringing together children's television content, VisFx, new media, games and technology with a combination of panel discussions, presentations and showcases. The Opening Keynote by Alice Webb, Director of BBC Children's was really upbeat about the future of animation in the UK and had an exciting announcement to make! Alice is in charge…

Manimation 2015 Event Reports Manimation Blog

Continue reading >