Friday, 20 November 2009

Little Big Planet commercial for PSP (Playstation portable) airs

Last month I finished directing a 30 second tv commercial for Playstation's Little Big Planet on the PSP. An animated extravaganza combining lots of different techniques - pixellation, stop-motion, and CGI animation - all condensed into a short space of time.

The initial idea for the commercial from Mike Hughes at LOVE creative, was to take the hand-crafted feel of the game with all its amazing textures and materials and combine this with a very fresh, and modern approach to the visuals.

The main character Sackboy is really fun, cute and cool. Just like on the PS3 you can change his outfits and put him in various different moods as you play. This facility for customization means that he appeals to an extremely wide range of people, across different age groups. I wanted to use his charm and personality to full effect in this ad. He is cheeky, energetic and inquisitive and I pushed this in his body language and actions. There is also I hope an injection of humour and cool in the ad which mirrors the feeling of the game itself.

And by the way, if you haven't played the game - get out there and try it!  I have to confess that a few of us, in the crew, were either already hooked or became a little hooked on the game during production. I hold my hands up as one of the latter. The others of you - you know who you are!

The commercial aired for the first time on Wednesday the 18th November. But you can also see it on the Slinky website. Just click on the link top right (of my blog page).

Take a look!

Friday, 9 October 2009

It's turning chilly

I'm glad to be back at Clapham Road Studios in Stockwell, shooting a new commercial for Playstation. It's a mixture of stop-motion, pixellation and CGI and I'm really enjoying all the different elements. I'm currently wearing two jumpers and a scarf though because it's gotten a bit chilly lately. 

Wednesday, 30 September 2009

House of Cards Exhibition in Aid of Shelter

Last Thursday I attended the private view of the House of Cards exhibition at the Haunch of Venison Gallery, London, W1.

A great concept, thought up by the creative minds at ad agency Leo Burnett, the exhibition
is made up of works from some of the country's most prolific artists, designers, and photographers.

Contributing artists include: Vivienne Westwood, Tim Walker, Amelia's Magazine, and Damien Hirst to name but a few.

Each artist came up with a piece for one of the cards in a classic deck of playing cards. And so the collective works make up a complete set (1000 limited edition packs of over-sized cards are/were available to buy at the gallery shop). Each piece is up for auction this week in aid of Shelter the housing and homelessness charity - so it's all for a great cause.

My tiny contribution to all this is that my illustration was part of Amelia's Magazine's artwork - the 2 of Hearts quilt. It was great to finally see it in the flesh. I love Amelia's choice of very different styles which combine together to make a truly eclectic looking, colourful and interesting piece.

Here's a phone pic of me standing next to it

Here's the Vivienne Westwood

the Tim Walker, (my favourite photographer)

and the diamond dusted Damien Hirst

I think it's still up this week, so trundle along and take a look!

Shelter believes everyone needs a home in a place where they can thrive.
We help over 170,000 people a year fight for their rights, get back on their feet, and find and keep a home. We also tackle the root causes of bad housing by campaigning for new laws, policies, and solutions.
Our work won’t stop until there’s a home for everyone. Please help us.

Visit to join our campaign, find housing advice, or make a donation.

Monday, 10 August 2009

DepicT! news - Breaking the Mould in cinemas nationwide

'DepicT! ‘08 Winning Films on the Digital Screen Network

Last year’s winners Enough, What’s Virgin Mean? and Breaking the Mould have been digitised by Arts Alliance Media, scrutinised by the BBFC (15, PG and U respectively, if you’re curious) and sent out to cinemas through the Digital Screen Network where they’ll be screened before feature films.  

Venues confirmed include: Showrooom in Sheffield, Glasgow Film Theatre, ICA in London, Broadway in Nottingham, Quad in Derby, Cornerhouse in Manchester, Arts Picturehouse in Cambridge and, of course, Watershed in Bristol!  They’ll be playing the shorts with titles including Fish Tank, Broken Embraces and Mid-August Lunch, so keep an eye out and let us know what you think!'

Taken from the DepicT! newsletter 10/08/09

Saturday, 8 August 2009

Amelia's Magazine Shelter Card Quilt

Here is the amazing Shelter Card Quilt, put together by Amelia Gregory, and made up of of 54 designs. It will be auctioned in aid of Shelter later this year. You can see my card third from the bottom, far left. I'm really excited to be part of the project, and I think it looks fab. Let's hope that it raises a lot of money for this worthy cause.

Tuesday, 14 July 2009

Amelia's magazine Illustration success

Amelia contacted me to say that my illustration has made it on to her Shelter quilt design (see Monday 8th of June post), so I'm really pleased! It will be exhibited as part of the Shelter charity art show this summer. Yay!

Wednesday, 1 July 2009

Workshop Missoni: Daring to be Different

Last night I attended the opening of Workshop Missoni, an exhibition focusing on the iconic Italian fashion house Missoni, attended by Luca, Ottavio and Rosita Missoni.

I really enjoyed the clothes that were on display, and the video featuring Ottavio and Rosita Missoni talking about their lives and influences. It was interesting to see them looking at colours in nature and their native Italy for inspiration - the terracottas, the stone, the spectrum of greys in the woodland from dark almost slate to violets and green greys. It was also fascinating to take a glimpse of them at work in the studio - the drawings, the swatches, the knitting machinery.

(Also in this video was the artist Kaffe Fasset. I remember his books being on the shelves at home ever since I was a child. My mum who has always made amazing knitted creations, has always been a big fan. Follow the link to Kaffe Fasset Studio here)

There's an article about the exhibition here at indieLONDON

Workshop Missoni: Daring to be Different, will be on display at the Estorick Collection of Modern Italian Art from July 1 to September 20, 2009.

Friday, 26 June 2009

TOPSHOP Oxford Circus - Solo Exhibition September '09

I just found out this week that I have landed a solo exhibition for 2 weeks at TOPSHOP, Oxford Circus, London! The exhibition will run from Monday the 7th September. It's super exciting! I will be showing some new 3D work, (more info nearer the time).

Thursday, 25 June 2009

Fantaspoa titles

Luca and I were asked to create a title sequence for this year's Fantaspoa fantasy film festival in Brazil. They had seen our award winning short Breaking the Mould and very much liked the aesthetic. So we set about creating a 3D world populated by characters representing the fantasy sci-fi genre, but in our style. 
Although Breaking the Mould was built in After Effects 3D, with a CGI character, this time we explored the potential of 3D cameras and space a bit more. However, like Breaking the Mould, the piece was created using both 2D and 3D animation and elements. We animated in Maya, After Effects, and Flash.
Once again the music is an original piece from (former Enid Blitz frontman) Barney Wade.

* For a higher res version of the video go here

Monday, 15 June 2009

Blur's comeback gig Wakes Colne

'As the small "friends and family" crowd gather when Blur take to their makeshift stage around eight-ish, more fans gather outside the museum's fence straining to peer in through the windows, catching the songs on the night breeze'.

Paul Stokes NME 27/06/09

That was us....The 13th June, our Nanna's 90th birthday, was a day that I will never forget. Having had a birthday lunch at the Angel Hotel in Bury St. Edmunds my brother Toby, my cousin Barney and I decided to take a trip back to Wakes Colne to soak up the atmosphere at Blur's first gig for 10 years, at the East Anglian Railway Museum Wakes Colne, near Colchester. Toby and I grew up in a house on that very same road, and it was where we first heard, and fell in love with Blur's music over 15 years ago. As we drove up the road to check out the situation at the museum, our hearts sank a bit as we saw people with neon yellow wristbands ambling happily down the road towards the pub. We didn't have tickets. After a few polite enquiries from some very nice official type people, we discovered what we already knew - there weren't any tickets available on the door. Feeling a little dejected but still determined to come back and listen to the gig from the outside later on, we headed down to the pub (to meet up with a friend of Toby's whom we'd seen when we arrived in the village).

Parking on the village green next to our old primary school, we went in and ordered drinks and a packet of crisps at the bar. I felt a bit jealous as we went out to join Toby's friend sitting in the courtyard. But as I sat down he said to me, 'You realize that they are in here don't you?' Blur were in the pub having dinner with their families. That was weird for me. The number of times I've been in that pub as a kid, I never would have thought that I would see my favourite band in there - it seemed quite incongruous. They looked really relaxed, and Alex was walking around grinning from ear to ear. As the start time of the gig approached, we were surprised to see Damon, Alex, Graham and Dave still in there until the last minute. As they left, we finished our drinks and headed up Station Road to listen.

It was a beautiful evening and as we heard the first chord of She's So High and the crowd's roar, we couldn't help but feel a surge of excitement and emotion. 'That's not a recording, that's real' Barney said. And it was. We ended up outside the fence listening to the gig with a few other fans and the sound was amazing. We'd been there for about 4 or 5 songs when suddenly one of Blur's entourage waved at us from the other side of the tracks. Then she said the magic words 'I've got some more tickets. I'm coming round'. We surged up the platform, and our hands shook as we attached our wrist bands. Running up the steps and across the railway bridge we were laughing, hardly able to believe our luck. And as the doors of the old railway shed opened and we heard the first few bars of Beetlebum we couldn't contain our joy....we were in!

The gig was amazing. They sounded great, and the energy in the room was electric. Popscene, Song 2, Coffee and TV, End of a Century... they kept them coming. Damon said that this would be the longest set they would play in the coming weeks. And as he waved to his dad, or shared a moment with Graham I felt almost tearful, they were just having fun. I got a couple of big smiles from Alex, and chants of 'We love you Dave!' carried over the buzz of an ecstatic crowd. But my best moment was when during Chemical World (I think - to be honest I can't remember much about that moment) I reached over and touched Damon's arm, and he grabbed my hand and held on to it. I felt his energy surging through my hand and, as the girls next to me screamed, I thought 'Wow this is the best gig I've ever been to!'

Whoever thought that the evening of my Nanna's 90th birthday could be so cool.

Thursday, 11 June 2009

Breaking the Mould in Rushes Festival

I am pleased to announce that Breaking the Mould has been selected for this year's Rushes Soho Shorts festival in the Animation category.

Monday, 8 June 2009

Amelia's magazine illustration submission

On Friday I submitted my design for Amelia's magazine open design brief, in aid of the housing and homelessness charity Shelter.

The brief was to design a 2 of hearts playing card. The winning designs will be chosen and put together to form a massive patchwork quilt of cards in many different styles and designs. Said quilt will then be part of an exhibition that Shelter are putting on in the summer. Other designers and artists contributing to the exhibition include Stella Vine, Basso and Brooke and Rachel Whiteread. The final artworks will be auctioned to raise money for the charity.

My idea was to use artichoke hearts as the main imagery. I eat them a lot when I am in Italy and they are so yummy with olive oil and lemon! I used bright, yet organic colours, with a sunshine yellow to evoke the zingy flavour of the lemon.

Tuesday, 26 May 2009

Fairy Design

This is a fairy design that I did for a title sequence that Luca and I were asked to create for a festival in Brazil. It will be released in a few weeks time.

Monday, 6 April 2009

Cbeebies Show Me, Show Me

I just finished a very enjoyable month animating on new Cbeebies programme 'Show Me, Show Me' at Trunk Animation, with director Siri Melchior at the helm. Animation-wise there are some really fun characters, all beautifully designed by Siri, and some cool stories to watch. If you have tinies, look out for it!

'Show Me Show Me brings together much loved CBeebies pair Chris Jarvis and Pui Fan Lee in an all-new series, in which the two play, explore and investigate in their exciting new playroom with shouts of "show me, show me!".....Come and play! Enter the lift, press the button and count the floors from one-to-ten on a magical, musical journey to the top floor flat where Chris and Pui have a playroom in the sky...'

Thursday, 26 March 2009

Google AdWords

Luca and I designed and animated this 3 minute animation for Google AdWords.
It was a lot of fun and we enjoyed working from home, drinking lots of tea, and animating our character Ada.

Here is the YouTube link to watch the video:

Thursday, 29 January 2009

Animation Blog

Ian Lumsden has written about my work on his animation blog. Check it out here

Friday, 23 January 2009


Here's a reel I haven't uploaded previously. It's made up of some of my direction and animation work. (For more hand drawn and stop-motion animation take a look at the Starbucks post back in May).

Wednesday, 14 January 2009

Levis pitch Illustrations

I was looking through my portfolio today and came across some illustrations I did for a Levis pitch in 2007. I would like to do some more work like this in 2009, as I really enjoy fashion and had great fun producing the drawings. Here are two of my favourites from the bunch. The first was created using Windsor Newton Ink and watercolour on Bristol Board, and the second was drawn in pencil on cartridge paper. I then took them both into Photoshop, where I cleaned them up and added coloured textures to the some of the clothing.

Monday, 12 January 2009

Findlay Brown 'Love Will Find You' promo

On Saturday I found myself on the other side of the camera this time, as an actor, being directed by Joe Tunmer in a promo for Findlay Brown's new single 'Love Will Find You'. I don't want to give anything away so I'll keep it short but, amongst other things, my role required that I learn two verses of the song and mime to a recording of Findlay's voice. I'm really excited to see the end result.

Thanks to Joe, the crew, and everyone at GaiaNova Productions for making it such an enjoyable experience.

To listen to the song, and find out more about both Findlay and Joe:

Breaking the Mould screening at the Rich Mix E1

Breaking the Mould will be in the 'Trick of Light' screening at the Rich Mix cinema this Wednesday the 14th January at 7.30pm:

Wed 14 January | 7.30pm
New Shorts 5: Trick of the Light (and East End Film Festival Award)
A selection of short films with gorgeous and sumptuous imagery in this stunning collection of rich cinematography and beautiful images. The programme includes the Encounters Film Festival UK award winner SEPTEMBER by Esther May Campbell, and the hit of the London and Edinburgh film festivals K by Piers Thompson. Watch out for the epic Cinematic Orchestra-produced short film TO BUILD A HOME starring Peter Mullen. The East End Film Festival will award the best overall cinematography and creative imagery within a short film.

TO BUILD A HOME (Andrew Griffin, 13 min)
SEPTEMBER (Esther May Campbell, 21 min)
RAPUNZEL’S FLIGHT (Gustavo Arteaga, 7 min)
PATIENCE (Robert Hackett, 7 min)
THE PRIEST (Ivana Bobic, 6 min)
BREAKING THE MOULD (Rebecca Manley / Luca Paulli, 2 min)
POP ART (Amanda Boyle, 16 min)
K (Piers Thompson, 20 min)

Running time: 92 min