Tuesday, November 18, 2008


Here is my animatic, updated with new animations!!! So far, I'm only concerned with getting through my shot list so some of these shots will be redone. In particular, the shot with the dust falling needs to be much, much, much slower. Also, please disregard the quality of the shots; these are but simple unaltered jpeg copies of the RAW images. I plan on processing the image sequences to give them a much higher contrast, ol'fashionedy look.

Also, the scenes with the sneaking lint are a little difficult to follow, and I plan on retouching the lint so that it is more vibrant.

Untitled from Caitlin Craggs on Vimeo.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


Well, lot's-o-updates. I finalized my set up so I could begin shooting fo' real.
camera city
It looks good... real good. But now I have to get back into the animation groove. This weekend I realized (rather painfully) that my timing skills need a quick tune-up. All that time doing artwork and getting stuff ready to shoot-- and now my shootin' arm has gone a bit flabby. Pay no mind, I'll be back in top gear lickitysplit. In the meantime, feast your eyes on this very shoddy animation done on my my old camcorder. WAY TOO FAST (especially on the second one). I'll have new, slightly less terrible animation that I did this weekend on the new camera up soon.

new animation 1 (11408) from Caitlin Craggs on Vimeo.

newanimation2(11408) from Caitlin Craggs on Vimeo.

Oh yes, and also of note (and illustrated in the following sequence of photos) I figured out a way to switch out the puppet hands. Where once an arthritic-looking hand was stitched to the puppet, I simply glued a cut-off needle. I can now easily slip new hands on and off the puppet.

needle hand switch out

Tuesday, October 21, 2008


So, as I was slipping behind in my schedule, I was also sipping champagne in New York at the Princess Grace Gala. It was quite a high-falutin' event with plenty of ballgowns and pomp. However, the most exciting thing was meeting all the other recipients. It's fun to meet people from other schools and compare experiences. However, animators were in short supply; the only other animator was a statute recipient (she won a initial grant and a works-in-progress grant, and was now being honored for her body of work). Check her out: Rose Bond, she does really cool things with animation projected in buildings.

http://www.rosebond.net/ !!!

Here are two photos of me and my animation being projected on a REALLY huge screen for lots of people. eek! Kinda weird.

Monday, October 20, 2008

bad news and good news

It is at this tragic juncture of the semester that I must inform myself and you (my valued readers) that I am indubitably and irreparably behind schedule. I cannot pretend that I will catch up those missing weeks. At this point I should have animated seven scenes. I have not done this. The good news is that I can make a new schedule!!! Huzzah! And everything will get done. On the sunny side, I will be meeting with an esteemed animator who will give me some much desired advice concerning how exactly to shoot my film. And about precisely what camera, lenses and lighting i will need to procure. So, without further ado, I will provide my revised schedule.

October 28 scenes 1,2,3
November 4 scenes 4,5,6,7
Nov 11 scene 6, 8, 9
nov 18 scene 10,11
nov 25 12, 14,15
december 2 scenes 13, 16
dec 12 scenes 17,18,19
break bg 12 scene 20

I can already hear Sheila's concern for the ambitiousness of this plan, but until I begin animating and actually find the pace too speedy, I'm gong to try and stick to my original pace (between two and four scenes a week).

Tuesday, September 30, 2008


new animatic!

Lintscapeanimatic(9/30/08) from Caitlin Craggs on Vimeo.


So, I haven't posted in a long while. I'm a bit behind in my schedule (about a week's worth of work). I completed two large scale backgrounds in pen (posted below) and I'm beginning to feel that the larger backgrounds are much more compelling (more information) and that perhaps every scene should be on such a scale.
I also experimented with a rudimentary multi-plane to see if a little depth would liven up each shot. The answer is YES!!!!
So, I'm considering going back and redoing all of the previous backgrounds (and therefore puppets, gulp) on a larger scale and multi-planar. Will need feedback from the class.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Buh buh backgrounds

The backgrounds, with appropriate puppets inhabiting them, are unpainted as well. This is for the same reason as the puppets' colorlessness: continuity.
puppet (v2) 1 in bg
puppet 2 in bg
puppet 4 in bg
I'm beginning to think about pushing the 3-dimensionallity of the backgrounds since the puppets have so much more depth. It looks a little odd. Particularly in the first example. Color helps to add depth the the BG, but only nominally. I think I'll have to re-do these BG's so that I can multiplane them. I will also have to carefully consider lighting. Thoughts? Concerns? Questions?


Puppets=mind boggling. Here are the first 5 puppets for the film. They are unpainted as I have decided that the best way to create color continuty between all the puppets will be to paint them at the end. As such, they can not be stitched together either. So, I'm on schedule. Sort of. This animation thing reallly is about problem solving!
puppet 1
puppet 2
puppet 3
puppet 4
Note that puppet 5 (CU hand) has three sets of replacable fingies so that the hand can release some clothing.
hand open
hand half open
hand clench

Thursday, September 4, 2008


So here is my second attempt at using gouache to paint the establishing BG (from the first scene). I switched the composition so it was a little more inviting and interesting. And I have to say, I'm rather please with thing over all... a nice feeling after being so disgusted by my first gouache (or should I say "gauche"?) attempt. I also found that all my work seems a little better after it has been scanned and fussed with in photoshop. Viva la computer!
first bg!!!! wazza!
I probably will go back and touch this up a bit before shooting it with a camera move... and I'm also considering animating the grassy parts with a little real grass. Must test!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008


Here is the puppet prototype. The backing is watercolor paper. To this is glued fabric and whatnot. In this version the skin is watercolor. I might attempt using gouache for a more bold look. The joints are connected using thread and needle. Simple but surprisingly sturdy.
Puppet front proto-type
puppet back proto-type
I will be constructing different puppets from different angles for different shots.

Monday, September 1, 2008


As requested, here is my updated animatic with discussed shots of the extended lint-attack-part. I'm a little bored with some of my camera angles. I thought I liked the campy side scroll look... but now I yawn at it in mild disgust. Perhaps I will re-board some shots before I begin puppet and BG construction.

Animatic 9/2/08 from Caitlin Craggs on Vimeo.

Monday, August 25, 2008


Thought I ought to post an overview of the project as it stands now:

The laundry room is creepy. Either vacant and fluorescent or dingy and hidden, the laundry room is an indubitably ominous space. I plan to capitalize on this creepiness in Lintscape by creating a tactile and emmersive world. Two films come to mind that will inform Lintscape’s visual style and mood, the first being the BBC series Planet Earth. The precision of the macro cinematography and attention to minutiae, particularly when filming insects appeals to Limtscape’s visual style: the viewer will “shrink” into a foreign microcosm. Secondly, David Lynch’s Eraserhead is a vital text for creating mood. I am impressed by the way that the film juggles fear and absurd humor without becoming campy. Also the gritty, grainy quality speaks deeply to the aesthetic of Lintscape.
The story begins in a normal neighborhood, in a normal laundry room, with a normal woman doing her laundry. The era is present day. We follow her deft actions at a leisurely pace, noting the particles and debris that are present in the atmosphere. Under the camera, we are not sure if the movement of dust, hair and soap suds are involuntary or not, benign or malicious. We become aware very suddenly that something IS in fact alive when a glob/creature of lint creeps out of the dryer’s lint trap. The hapless housewife will not see this until it is too late and has been strangled by the lint. A time lapse of her body shows spores of lint, growing from her host flesh. We then revisit the neighborhood shot, revealing that the attack was not isolated. The entire neighborhood has been overtaken by spores.
I will use 2D puppet, stop-motion in the drably-colored laundry room. For the final camera move, I will transition into a color-saturated 3D world with lint-polyp armatures. Shooting digitally, I can compile layers of animation, heightening the disjointed proportion and depth within the world. The focus on particle movement is crucial. Floating dust, waving hair and bubbling soap-suds, in addition to the mettlesome lint, will be filmed at a very close angle. One of the important aesthetic themes will be the play between what is intentional and what is not. Tension will build up as the audience wonders if the particles are moving in a natural system or if there is perhaps some conscious force. Achieving this type of minute and ambiguous movement will be very challenging, and I am seeking funding to engage mentors Janusz Sikora and Marce Valcarce in the process of lighting, shooting and compositing.
The theme of intentionality will carry over into sound design. I have composed music for my films before and look forward to working hands on with my composer and sound designer to create the perfect aural mood. In the laundry room, I wish to navigate the fine line between random noise and structured music, again creating tension through ambiguity. The environmental sounds will at times swell into an organized musical theme of sorts and then dissemble. In the colorful 3D lint world, I would like to have a pop song, reminiscent of “In Heaven” from Eraserhead. The scene is rather brash and frightening (lint-polyps have taken over the world!) and an asynchronous sound track heightens the horror of the situation by juxtaposing the visual tragedy with aural nonchalance.
I think there are tones of environmental concern, moments of childlike whimsy, and perhaps most important, though lackadaisically paced, the film is brief. At three minutes, there will be no time for slack. The film will be taut and entertaining, despite its experimental undertones.


So here begins the new blog, my previous attempt thwarted by a missing password. Lots to tell. First of all, the summer is coming to a close and it's time to start cranking out the animation for reel (ah ha hah!). This is perhaps the roughest part of the process: getting out of the liminality between the formative creative and organizational period, and the real beginning of production. Now I just have to jazz myself to start doing stuff.
What have I done so far? My main goal for the summer was to relax and reboot, and I think I accomplished that. (yes!) In addition, I have been collecting different types of lint. Some is wildly colored. I have found other lint donors who have tons of dog hair. Also, I am recruiting people to donate human hair and Persian cat hair. So, armed with fresh creative energy and growing lint harvestings, I am ready to start the process.
I wanted to post this item from the Miyazaki's graphic novel series "Nausicaa." It reminds me of my spore world.
Also, here are some luridly colored shots of the polio virus.

Also, I have been working of designing a space in my house where I can shot. It doesn't look like much yet, but I'm planning to convert this old closest into light controlled room in which I can make the rhetoric magic.
As one might note in this photo, the ceiling of the closet is uncovered. Must amend this.
I plan to paint the walls a dark, non-reflective black and outfit a heavy black curtain over the opening. Plans! Plans! Plans! Over and oot!