Sunday, 28 February 2010


More unabashed self-promotion in an attempt to convince myself that my cartooney timewasting has some value or consequence. Ah, who am I kidding? Of course it does!
It's been confirmed that 'House Guest' will be part of the 8th edition of Salento Finibus Terrae International Short Film Festival. Said festival won't be for ages yet (it starts around mid-July) and I doubt I'll know the specifics until June, but it takes the edge of that postal anxiety to get the ol' early heads-up. Festival takes place in San Vito dei Normanni in Italy (the heel of the boot).Another festival to include my delectable ducky goodness is the previously mentioned Belgrade Documentary & Short Film Festival, which I now know will screen 'House Guest' at 5pm CET on April 3rd. Good times.

Thursday, 25 February 2010

Asset Mismanagement

My continuing battle with Flash CS4 is getting to be significantly less stressful through the trial and error of putting this new website of mine together. Fortunately, I'm the kind of person who rarely fucks the same thing up twice (except in the case of relationships, friendships, eating habits, drunk dialing, sexual practices, professional conduct, bill-paying, general spillage and the ever-terrifying sitting-on-one's-own-balls).The main issue, now that I've sorted out most of the coding problems, is the visual motif I'm going with, having all the information - such as popups, buttons, headers etc - printed out on torn scraps of paper that either crinkle, unfurl or boil depending on how the mouse interacts with them. The torn paper look is something that I've always been fond of aesthetically and it's appeared in several previous projects, such as my short film 'Narcissus', the 'Agnosticaust' album artwork and the 'House Guest' graphic novel to name a few.To make it authentic I'm designing the assets, printing them out and scanning them back in, several times in some instances depending on what kind of animation is required. The process is tedium incarnate, but it does look pretty good once it's done. The popups themselves consist of six books, fourteen music projects, seven short films and seven music videos, along with bio information and several other elements that have no function other than being ornamental.The site has five sections, the main page which incorporates some personal info, links and news updates; Music; Film/Animation; Design/Illustration; and Books/Comics. Each of these has a different backdrop, a collage of visuals tailored to each section (eg. the 'Books' section features imagery from various comics and graphic novels, 'Music' features album artwork and so on). The sub-sections have the same opening animation to help stick with the theme, a reverse paper-scrunch that quickly smooths out.I'm liking the way it's coming together although I'm a little concerned that, with all the visual elements, the loading times for each page may frustrate visitors. Gonna file that one under 'bridge to cross once gotten to'.

Wednesday, 17 February 2010


Have just found out that 'House Guest' will be returning to Serbia for the Belgrade Documentary & Short Film Festival. This is the second Belgrade-based festival to include the film after Balkanima last year, and will run from March 30th to April 3rd. Aside from that I don't have any info on when the film will be shown, as their website is down at the moment (presumably being retooled for the 2010 edition, although there is some useful info here) but I'll be sure to post an update when I know. I never miss an opportunity to talk about myself like the self-aggrandising ass that I am.Some non-me news to balance out the universe, this week is Animated Exeter, a festival I've yet to be eligible for but has included some friends of mine in the past as well as this year. Putting aside the big boys like Plympton et al, films of note include Jo Hepworth (main assistant on 'House Guest')'s new short 'Dinnersaurs', Seb Burnett & Joe Wood's 'Julian Sweeney & His Teenie-Weenie Genie' and Sophie Klevenow's 'Noesis' which I did some sound work on (See? I brought it back to me again...I'm a coattail-riding fool). They're all worth checking out.

Update: 'Sweeney...' received a commendation and 'Noesis' won the Student Animation award. Congrats y'all :)

Saturday, 13 February 2010

Code Red

When I previously brought up redesigning my website, I referred to it as 'starting small' when compared to all the other shit I need to sort out with my life. As it turns out, losing 50lbs, developing a personality not predicated on passive-aggression and beating (whoopsie daisy...not yet, my boy, not yet...) are a fucking cakewalk in comparison, as none of these in any way involve Actionscript.Ah, Actionscript. Or, as I like to call it, 'c**tcode'. I pray that whoever developed it outlives their only child. Or at the very least they lose both testes (or ovaries - I don't discriminate) to a particularly nasty battle with a rabid pine weasel. Just when I get to grips with it I find that there are several variations on it that don't function at all while running alongside one another, resulting in an entirely new language I've developed for use when exasperated. It's predominantly comprised of grunts, rhythmic projectile spitting, fiendishly-modified racial epithets and self-mutilation.I suppose it makes the taste of victory that little bit sweeter when I finally get the f***ing sh***ing tw***ing c***ing thing to do what I f***ing sh***ing tw***ing c***ing want it to. Betraying my natural instinct to immediately give up on anything that's hard to begin with, I'm progressing it ever-so-incrementally and, in most respects, it's coming along quite well. Look at some purty screen grabs while I go back to it and choke back tears of vexation.

Thursday, 4 February 2010

Synecdoche, Bristol...doesn't work quite so well as a pun...

So, about a month after I'd hoped, I've finally shifted enough extraneous flabby tissue to have reached my target belt size. And yet I still have the body and disposition of a Philip Seymour Hoffman character. I need Marky Mark to give me a good dressing down.
Having dug out that clip I just realised that Hoffman circa '97 was in better shape than I am now. That reference sure bit me on the ass.
I've consequently betrayed my lineage and joined a gym. Amazing carrot-and-stick effect a nice pair of buttocks has when using the cross-trainer in front of yours. If you're a girl and reading this, that was an ironic and biting dig at the assumptions of a cynical society. For true.Changing the subject, my short film "Ground Running" will be making its first festival appearance of 2010 at the Skepto International Film Festival, taking place in Cagliari, Sardinia. To display my superb geographical knowledge, that's one of the Italian islands the boot is gearing up to punt.
This film was completed and put out in 2008 (a couple months after I finished "House Guest") and then quickly rescinded when a bunch of people pointed out some eerie similarities to another film. I amended these last year, ultimately lengthening the film as a consequence. Once I've retired "House Guest" I plan on putting more effort into sending the new edit of "Ground Running" around and getting it seen. In the meantime, the Skepto festival will take place toward the end of the month, exact day/time/place to follow.