Friday, January 16, 2009

The Loonie Puppet

So called cause in Canada a "Loonie" is slang for $1. Also called "Loonie" as in "Loony," as in"You Can Make The Puppet Act Loony If You Want To". See, we have $1 coins here, and they have a picture of a bird on them. A loon, in fact. See how it's all making "cents" now?

This is a "How To" sheet you might useful, if you happen to be a stop motion fan that's just starting to get into the medium. It came about from the stop motion intro course I teach at Sheridan. I wanted to devise a simple (yet challenging) way to allow students to cheaply make their own puppets that could really be animated, and could be animated on any flat surface, like a desk or table top. It also had to NOT require fancy materials, tools, resources.

Be sure you click on this image first, THEN download that enlarged image. Scale it to fit the paper when you print, and you should end up with a scale drawing of the puppet that's approximately 11cm (4 1/4" inches) high.

But even if you make something that's approximately that height, you should be OK. Just don't make it 3cm (1") high, which would be too small to animate. And don't make it 20cm (8") high, which would be too tall to stand up properly. You get the idea.

Read my posting below about "Sheridan Stop Mo" and follow the links to see some examples of what this little critter can do...

Have fun!

Friday, January 9, 2009

Growing Up Star Wars: 1977-1985

On a scale of 1-10 in terms of being a Star Wars fan, I'd place myself at around a 6 or 7. I don't care to see the recent three films, nor much of any of the recent Star Wars "stuff" that pours fourth, but the "holy trinity" of Star Wars, The Empire Strikes Back, and Return of The Jedi hold a truly special place in my heart.

Anyway, if you grew up in the 70s and 80s, you have to check out Growing Up Star Wars: 1977-1985, at Flickr.

There's not much more to say. If these were your childhood years, and if Star Wars meant anything to you then (or now), you'll soon be lost in a sea of wookies, droids and light sabers.

The fashion, the hair styles, even the quality of the photos (ah, so nice to see film grain!)... It's just a wonderful drift back to such a great place.

What strikes me the most is all the HOME MADE costumes! So little store-bought! Today, everything's bought at Wal-Mart, but "back in the day" Mom put that costume together with her bare hands! Long live HAND MADE (costumes, animation, art in general...)

Behold, one of my faves from the Flickr page, a Tuscan Raider (aka Sand Person) from Star Wars. So nicely done! You can see more great photos by this person here.