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More sketchbook work

Carrying on from where i left my progress with the robodog ideas last time, i got the base of dog down and managed to come up with a few ideas on weapons and tools the dog would have. Also messing around with a few sketches which targeted his legs..

James Bond Story boarding

Another great find from the library was the Life of Bond book... It was an incite into how they came up with the stories for Bond using story boarding.. The technique used to produce the story boards were what interested me, also the colour patterns and strong pen marks are very pleasing tot he eye.

The shots with the crocodile are great, a story board from actual footage.. It is very helpful, it gives you a different perspective compared to drawings.

Everything about the James Bond films is brilliant, from the concept art that goes into the buldings to the original books by Ian Fleming.

Sketchbook ideas

So after some researching i had the idea for the robot character in my head, then came the part of putting it down on paper.. Starting with a few sketches of a Saint Bernard dog, i then when step by step changing parts and coming up with ideas to turn it into a robot.... The toy robot dogs that were around in the early 2000's were good inspiration and a good starting point.. From my sketchbook, there is a lot of doodling but it is very helpful towards getting my final piece..

My idea for the robodog is it not being overweight and with sagging skin like the actual dogs themselves, but more of a chiseled exterior like that of batman or possibly the character from i robot..

Robots (2005) Character designs

Continuing on with my research, i found the Robots character design book in the library. Because i was given the robot as one of my objects i felt this would be very helpful.

Unfortunately there was no story boarding in this, however the character designs are amazing and the way they came up with each individual robot is even more amazing, every piece of the robots are taken from everyday objects. Michael Knapp was one of the concept artists for this film and his sketch style is something i would love to be able to achieve...

The stages that the designs go through are what i was really interested in..

Practicing with the graphics tablet is something i need to start doing a lot more of.


Bicentennial Man (1990)

Robin Williams plays a robot ho is assigned to a family called the Martins, but he is no ordinary robot.. He starts to experience emotions and feelings and with the help of the father of the family and a scientist he gradually becomes a full functioning human.. The reason i watched this, was to look at how Williams does everything the family tell him to, and when he is an actual robot, the shape and style of his body..


Examples of Storyboard animatics

Having missed one of the 'Final cut pro' lessons, i had a look on youtube to see if i could find any good animatics.. Mine itself will be pretty simple, so the ones i have found will be what i aiming for..

Research: Related adverts

So as i have decided to make my storyboard an advert for the new robodog, i am going to look at adverts for new tools or related items that i feel could help me with my own design.

I also want to look at the area in which the advert will be filmed. I want to use the idea that they have in the dyson adverts, where there is no background or area, therefore the viewers eyes will not leave the robodogs.

(Best advert i have ever seen :))


Final idea for Story-Telling

So i have finally come to a decision on my storyboard.. My two previous ideas were good, but far too long.. With help from Phil my decision has been made..

The scene opens with the new robotic super dog appear, like in an advert with a man in the background saying ' ROBODOG (NOT ACTUAL NAME YET) he will never let you down'

The animatic then shows different things he can do from fighting to helping their owners out with the chores around the house. With the man's voice narrating through.

Then the last scenes says every robodog is made with a real dogs brain within it.. With the narrator sayiing the company will not be held responsible for; Attacks on owners, Brain fluid leakage and other funny comments, with his voice dying out at the end.

My sketches will be posted soon

Psycho (1960)

Obviously the film is famous for the 'shower scene', but it is also the starting point where all horror films have spawned from. I have seen this many times, but when i first watched the film, the way Hitchcock hid the old womans identity for the majority of the film was amazing.. I really thought his mum was the actual murderer..

The trailer for this is amazing!

I enjoy this film a lot more compared to the newer horror films, this is mainly due to the fact that Hitchcock makes his films with tact and class as well as keeping a great story line.. Many horror films you see these days are just full of blood and guts and have no real meaning...

Hitchcock is a genius!


Rope (1948)

Even though in my opinion this film isn't one of Hitchcock's greatest films, it could be one of his most important ones.. The way he basically used one continuous shot for the whole film was something that had never been done before.. There are in fact a few shots in this film because of how long a roll of film could be, but he hides the cuts very well...

I enjoyed this film because mainly of the two main characters Brandon and Phillip.. Even though there are no references to it in the film, they seem as if they are a couple and possibly live together..

One thing annoyed me was how 'Rupert' was working certain things out, it should never have really come into his mind about certain things if he didn't know anything was going on... Only the audience should have known these details

Saint Bernard dogs

The Saint Bernard is a breed of dog that was bred for rescue.. It has become famous over time because of stories of rescue as well its large size. Using its rescuing feature i will use it as something for my story..


Cutting Edge

Quick post about yesterdays documentary. I found it really interesting and some of the editors that spoke were really inspirational and made me want to become an editor.. It seems like a bit of a hidden gem within the industry and even though the editor has come to prominence since the likes of Verna Fields, i still feel that nobody truly understands how much they do for the film..

The image below is of the Moviola, it was the original editing machine and was how all of the old films were put together, we have come a long way since the use of this, computers are a lot more helpful and accurate..

Another thing in the documentary that surprised me, was how sexist the industry was in the days of Verna Fields and such characters. Walter Murch said that the industry felt that editing was a more womanly job, it was like stitching, sewing or any other delicate jobs, whereas the men would be introduced when sound came into the equation because it was more of a mans job.. This made me laugh..

Listening to people like Martin Scorsese and Ridley Scott talk was really insightful, and knowing how much an editor actually did took me by surprise a little. Quentin Tarantino is just crazy, his over the top actions and the way he talks is amazing..


Essay preparation

I first chose four films that i thought had some great edited scenes in and then defined the choices by thinking which film i really appreciate, not just for its edited scenes but the entire film.

The first four choices were
The Dark Knight
Lord of the Rings - The two Towers
Schindler's list
Pulp Fiction

My decision was Pulp Fiction... I have seen it a fair amount of times and even though i believe Reservoir Dogs to be a better film, there is just something about Pulp Fiction that i am fascinated with..

Walter Murch once said "Film editing is now something almost anyone can do at a simple level and enjoy it, but to take it to a higher level requires the same dedication and persistence that any art form does".


More research

This is another film that has given me more ideas, not so much about the story line but more about the character design of the dog.. Even though its not a great film, how the hero is formed is similar to what im looking to do.. His costume and weapons is the main attraction for me..



Final ideas Part 2

The second idea was formed from the discussion with Phil.. I am really pleased with this idea, it has something fascinating about it.. The only the thing that bothers me, is that i feel a little guilty because Phil has contributed a large amount of the idea...

So in this story, the robot will be played by a Saint Bernard dog.. Now i have had a few ideas regarding the dogs story, for example, what is his purpose, and what makes him special etc..

Sub idea 1

Its the future and guide dogs for the visually impaired have been replaced by these robotic dogs who have brains that function similar to humans... They are all modeled on one prototype, so are all identical. However there is a mistake at the factory that makes them and they somehow produce a superdog...

Unknown to the manufactures, the dig is sent to a new owner.. This is when the trouble starts. The blind man who has been given the dog decides to go for a walk.

The man lives in a large town, but on the outskirts near the woods.. Anyway, whilst on this walk, the dog, who has super hearing, hears the screams of a woman and makes his way to the point of interest, unbeknown to the blind man... After an hour or so, emerging from the woods, the man and his robotic companion come to a small clearing where they see a group of vehicles parked in a circle with their lights pointing towards a tied up couple...

The dog realises that a murder is about to take place... Because he is so adavanced he can speak, tells the old blind man that it could get a little bumpy... The dog takes on the bad guys, with the blind man swinging from the collar... Using grappling hooks, rocket launchers, explosives and other gadgets he defeats the bad guys and saves the people...

However they were blind folded the whole time and think that its the old blind man who has saved them.... The scene cuts to the newspaper headline for the next day 'blind man takes down 10' end of scene....

I dont really like this idea its too long and i think the storyline is too confusing...

Sub idea 2

After being disowned by its owners, (trevor) name of dog, probably will be changed... Gets picked up by a mad scientist, who experiments on him.. After waking up he finds that his skin is now metal and he feels stronger and full of energy... He breaks free from the lab and into the city... Whilst running he discovers new things he has acquired such as, propellers that come out of his head, extreme speed, guns in his paws as well as grappling hooks, blades that fire, and fire breathing breath plus much more....

He decides that these powers could help others and starts to fight crime, similar to batman or superman... Always hidden and always protecting...

Im leaning more to this idea because it is shorter and seems like it will be a lot more fun to design...

The research for this is....


Inspector gadget


Final ideas

After help from Phil during the story-boarding meeting i have narrowed my ideas down to two..


After putting forward my idea about the robot scouts and having the thought about something similar to 'Carry on Camping', i came up with this idea...

On a planet which is inhabited by robots that do everything exactly how a human would, the story follows one family who go camping...

The family consists of a very competitive dad, a crazy mum, a teenage girl-bot, and naughty little boy-bot..

After finally setting up their tent, which takes a fair amount of time, the dad feeling really proud with himself sits back and admirers his work... However at that moment a richer family with more kids turn up, and plant their tent right next to the first family..

Without any messing about or accidents the second family erect their tent in minutes, much to the annoyance of dad 1... However he lets it go and tries to have a good time with his family, however everything his family do, the second family can do better..

This results in the first dad spying on the second family to see what they do within their tent. Unknown to him though is that the rich dad has put loads of booby traps in and around the tent, to stop intruders.

This results in lots of pain for the first dad... In the end the rest of the family make friends with the other family and the dad just gives in...

After doing some research, i found a few movies that could help me with the setting and make the story line stronger..

Cheaper by the dozen

Carry On camping

Almost Heroes - Not really anything to do with my story, just the accidents the characters have are funny.. Chris Farley is brilliant

Planet 51


The Battleship Potemkin

Well, after Phil recommended the film, i thought id take a look.. After the film finished, i sat there with a little shock.. The film overall isn't the greatest, but the scene where the Army shoot the civilians on the top of the steps is a truley remarkable piece of cinema... When the pram starts to fall down the stairs was a brilliant piece of editing.. Going from the pram, back to the shooting and then back again shows why this film was a bench mark for all other edited scenes in the cinema world.

Also the reaction and emotion from the characters, as well as the close ups and action shots brings the whole story together.. Another thing that came to mind when the pram starts to fall, is that how many other films have used similar ideas, showing that Eisenstein basically invented editing and cutting....

Another point to take note of is the way the music is used to portray feelings... Nowadays films dont use great scores from huge orchestra's, old disney films are prime examples of this.

One film that almost copies the pram scene is the 'Untouchables'....


Short animations

After Alan's tutorial which included clips from some short animations, i decided to take a look on the internet myself to see the different styles used...

This short is taken from the film 'Up', i enjoyed this as it has different elements compared to the film itself.. Also how the camera draws away from characters or draws closer is something im really interested in adding to my own story..

Here are a few others that made me laugh

I also looked for a few animations which included robots, seeing as my main object is a robot.

The final clip in my opinion is amazing... Definitely take a look!!

La Jetee

The 1962 Sci-Fi film that follows survivors of a nuclear war, who experiment with time travel to try and save the present day... The film is told through still black and white images. I had seen the film before on my foundation course, but it didnt really serve any purpose to me back then.. What makes it so compelling to me, is the use of light and also the music that gives you a spooky feeling....

For such a short film, it has made a huge impact on modern day cinema. The images where the scientists experiment on different subjects gives me an uneasy feeling... It is amazing how so much emotion comes from single shots...


First ideas

Coming up with ideas for my story was a lot harder than i thought it would be.. When i first got the objects, i was fairly pleased compared to some of the other guys objects, now im regretting thinking this...


The scene opens with a group of small child robots in a scout group, going camping in the woods... After making camp, the scout master splits them up into groups to do small projects like looking for insects and small animals.. The story then centers onto one group, focusing on one particular boy robot.. After a few minutes of wandering the woods, the particular boy sneaks off because he thinks he sees something.. But soon gets lost deep in the woods, with hardly any light..

After sometime the boy finds a relatively small cliff, he decides to climb it, using his grappling hook and extending arms quickly gets to the top to look for a better view..

By the this time the group has moved on.. He finally sees some smoke coming from a distance that is by far to long to walk.. Starting to panic he thinks he will then have to walk all the way to the destination, hoping they dont move on again..

He then comes up with an ingenious idea, getting his tent out of his pouch, he cuts it down the middle and jumps... The wind takes the tent and he flies towards the direction of the smoke...


A robot falls to earth after accidentally falling from his spaceship.. He has a grappling hook for a hand.. ( Story goes to backflash of how he lost original hand)... Not sure how yet, but would like to make it funny!!

He lands in the middle of a camp site, and right next to a tent... The campsite looks deserted, but all of the people are at the club.. He has no idea what the tent is, and starts to mess around with it, trying to work out what it is... After some funny accidents regarding the grappling hook tearing the tent, he ends up stuck in the tent, sighing with exhaustion.
(I like the second idea better, because it reminds me of something out of 'carry on camping')


The scene opens with the camera positioned on the tent, at night... There is a light in the tent and you can see the silhouette of a robot, moving around very quickly.. Suddenly a grappling hook whips out of the tent and wraps around a box of tools, and pulls them into the tent... The robot then appears at the entrance of the tent, looks at the camera and scurries back inside. After a few more movements back inside the tent.. Within a flash the grappling hook flies out of the tent and grabs the camera. The scene goes dark..

(The reason i am partial to this idea is because im not sure whether i want to pursue a comedy sketch, and i feel this small story could have quite a dark and spooky feel about it.)


Im not really sure about this idea. But thought id post because every idea can lead to something.. In a robot world, all robots live in tents. The ground cannot be touched because it is too hot... So the Tents are attached to high pylons, on top of each other for miles on end.... Each line of tents is attached to the pylons by massive grappling hooks..

The story follows a robot who doesnt belong to any tent, and just wanders the grappling hook, encountering different robots who just disgard him..

I dont like this idea due to the fact that it reminds me of minority report, also it would take far too long to get it all down...

Getting started

So after the brief on monday, Phil's talk gave me some real inspiration and direction into where to go with this project.. I have decided to look at how companies within the industry go about using storyboards.. One thing that really stuck out to me was the different syles used to produce an amazing looking storyboard.. Obviously my first sketches wont be great, and im not too fussed about that.. But hopefully i can achieve something similar to these examples...

Story-telling objects...

So after some real problems, i have returned, somewhat lost and clogged up with feelings... However im determined not let anything get me down. Keeping busy should keep my mind off other things...

The three objects that i have been given are...




Hopefully these arent too tough to make a story from. Im not sure whether i want my story to be a comedy or a more serious one.. Trial and error will defiantly come into play here..