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Report – Keynote: The Times are a changin’ … what lies ahead in a post Brexit future for the screen industries

Posted on: Thursday 17 November 2016 5:01pm by Helen Dugdale

Speaker: Cat Lewis, Nine Lives Media Takeaway: Big changes are coming with Brexit, so lobby to have your voice heard. Organisations such as Save Kids Content UK, PACT and the Creative Industries Federation are working hard to ensure that changes are in the industries' favour. Detail: What lies ahead in post Brexit? Cat talked about how 2016 and beyond is a time of great change, and industry bodies are committed to making the future as much in our favour as possible. She urged everyone in the industry to push their opinions, lobby and use the industry bodies to get their voices…

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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…

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Report – Panel 2: Creative Snapshot with the BBC

Posted on: Thursday 17 November 2016 5:21pm by Helen Dugdale

Speakers Westley Wood, CITV (moderator) Sarah Legg, CBeebies Jo Allen, CBBC Tim Searle, CBBC Productions Takeaway: Like cream, the best ideas always rise to the top! Spend time watching the channels to see what we’re doing and if you have anything different to offer. CBBC is on the hunt for a strong female-led series for 6-8 year olds, not pink princesses. The BBC still has lot of hope for kid’s content after Brexit – it will affect producers rather than the channel. Detail: Areas of discussion from the panellists included: Sarah Legg On the whole, CBeebies is looking for new…

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Report – Panel 3: Brave New Worlds

Posted on: Thursday 17 November 2016 5:28pm by Helen Dugdale

Speakers: Ben Mills, Desk Dragons Jonathan Newth  Focal Point VR Nick Pittom, Fire Panda David Sproxton, Aardman Animations and member of BAFTA VR Advisory Board Takeaway: VR and AR technology is still developing, meaning there will be big changes in the next 5-10 years – but for now the industry and users are yet to be convinced about the type of controls and their relevance in the whole VR experience. Detail: The panel discussed how it’s an exciting time to be working in and involved with VR and AR, and how the industry is all still learning about what’s possible,…

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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…

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Report – Panel 5: Training and Development – New Initiatives, New Entrants

Posted on: Thursday 17 November 2016 5:38pm by Helen Dugdale

Speakers: Belinda Peach Peachy Abigail Fairhurst, Brown Bag Films Steve Swanborough, Freelance animator, motion designer and editor Praveen Zacharias, Brown Bag Films, Rose Marley, Sharp Futures Helen Brunsdon, Creative Skillset Adrian Healey, The Manchester Growth Company Takeaway: Getting ahead in the industry is about hard work, dedication and work experience, whether that’s in relevant positions or simply by improving your social skills working in Costa Coffee. Detail: The panel looked at: The changes to the apprenticeship schemes coming in April 2017 and what will be expected of businesses. Why universities and industry need to work together more. How the transition from…

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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.…

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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…

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Report – Presentation 3: TV and related media in the lives of UK pre-schoolers

Posted on: Thursday 17 November 2016 5:17pm by Helen Dugdale

Speaker: Fiona Scott, University of Sheffield Takeaway:  The traditional belief is that when preschool children consume TV and related content it is a solitary and sedentary experience – but the truth is parents tend to watch TV with, and engage with, their young children. Detail: Fiona’s research focuses on the lives of eight pre-schoolers and their families living in mixed households across Sheffield. Fiona showed footage of her research subjects. On the video, children were seen to be keen to do other thing while watching their favourite shows; colouring, talking about the content and often dancing and singing. The young children also take what…

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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…

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Report – Showcase 1: Motion in the North

Posted on: Thursday 17 November 2016 4:47pm by Helen Dugdale

Speaker: Jonathan Ashworth, Mighty Giant Takeaway: Manchester’s animation industry is highly regarded and distinct. The creative talent is attracting attention from the across the UK and internationally. Recruiting talent can be tricky, building strong allegiances with the regional universities can help this. Detail: Jonathan introduced a video featuring members of Motion in the North, a Manchester-based group for motion designers, animators, filmmakers and VFX artists, talking about their experiences of getting into, and working within, the Manchester animation sector. The message was that the Manchester animation scene is growing and developing nicely, and the strong talent pool is making its…

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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…

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