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Lauren Project 1

Media Mill Video

My animation revolves around a hungry dog in search of food. Unfortunately the place he is directed to by other dogs fails to provide him with food since absolutely "no dogs" are allowed to enter the store. The structure of the story is basically the same as my original idea except for the ending. Originally I was going to have the hungry dog be successful and get his sandwich but in the end I decided that the dog would fail simply because he went into the wrong store; the free food is being given away at the store next door. I thought it would give a twist on a story that had an obvious and expected ending but also lets the viewer be on the inside while leaving the dog in the dark.

My original idea and inspiration for the story was based on Chaplin's comedy and physical humor. I hope I captured a little bit of that in this project. I intentionally used a Scottie dog because it is a littler breed and has more sympathetic qualities than other kinds of dogs that are associated with being strong or independent. I used the Scottie dog because of Chaplin's character the Tramp was a small guy who was usually pitted against the big guy and also because he was a sympathetic character even when he did 'bad' things. I also attempted to make the dog have dark eyes and a little mustache to resemble Chaplin.

After starting on my project I also changed and developed new ideas for the types of tricks I was going to use since I realized some of them didn't really help the narrative but just would be kind of cool. So, for the tricks in my animation I mostly focused on time-based tricks using the computer techniques such as dissolves and changing the duration of my images from slow to fast to create tension in the story. I also use an object-based trick where the dog enters the sandwich shop, looks around and then the shop keeper appears out of nowhere. It was a lot of fun to play around with the tricks and the duration of the images. One other technique I used was repetition of both sounds and sequences to create anticipation in the viewer of what will happen next.

Another aspect that I changed since my original idea was the use of sound in my project. I really wanted the images to stand completely on their own and be entertaining and make sense narratively. Unfortunately, some of the images I shot would only make sense if there was sound - such as sound effects for entering the shop. I started playing around with the sound effects and think the project is much better with the additions and I'm sure could be improved upon even more. The sounds helped me not only make sense of the narrative but also helped to create tension and ambience.

Overall, it took awhile but it was a fun project to put together and experiment with; I really like the stop-motion process and technique.