Resources

Here are a couple videos that I have found interesting.


This video is about story boarding  

 This video is a good example of whiteboard animation which is stop motion using a white board and marker.

 

UMD Art and Design

 I'm enrolled in the UMD (University of Minnesota Duluth) Art Education program here.  You can check out the program here http://www.d.umn.edu/art/  I enjoy the program and look forward to what the future holds! You can also find information on the different degrees here http://www.d.umn.edu/finearts/students-careers.php

Tweed Museum of Art

  The Tweed is an awesome on campus resource that you can check out here http://www.d.umn.edu/tma/  It's an art museum that displays artwork from all over but also serves as a weekly venue for seniors in art programs to showcase their work as well as a multitude of other things.  I definitely recommend checking it out.

Digital Methods Course

  This course was an experience in digital art and its applications in the classroom.  Our big project was the digital arts workshop that we did over the course of several weeks and I posted about it earlier in the blog.  The official project website is here http://blog.lib.umn.edu/jrock2/workshop09/ and there you can find a summary of what we're all about.

Project 4 Reflection

  Being this was the final project for the class, I wanted to do something I would have fun with.  My film was inspired off of what we did in project 3, the Digital Workshop.  I know I didn't want to do something with a green screen but instead take an existing space (in this case my bathroom) and create a little adventure.  I went to Target and picked up some rather generic action figures who had many joints.  This allowed me to get more movement out of my figures than I would have if I had used less movable figures.  
  The concept is a race throughout my bathroom to get to a finish line that is revealed at the end.  There's a little surprise waiting for our characters at the end that I hope the viewer doesn't see coming.
  I'm happy with how my film turned out, even though the animation isn't as fluidic as I had hoped.  The bad aspects do not outweigh the good but I think my back may disagree.  I also learned that for the two scenes I had help with, a second person pressing the capture button on the camera makes a huge difference.  What would take ten minutes of frustration turns into one minute of ease once you add a third hand.
  I enjoyed making the film and if I had much more time, I know I would take the time to make something to knock your socks off, but for now I'll just get them past the heel.

Project 2 Reflection

  Looking back on our storyboard project, I'd have to say it was a good learning experience.  This was our first assignment that involved the class to participate with it and some things worked while others did not.  First off, I learned it's important to tell the entire class what they need to know while they're grouped up together.  Otherwise, it seems we were yelling to get messages out and even then things were lost in translation and this was with college students.  It would also be important to use materials that will be visible from a distance like markers rather than pencils where pressure and thickness dictate much of the readability.
  Other than those two things, I think this was a positive experience.  I would tweak it a bit but I could definitely see this become a viable project for a class.

Final Project Stop Motion Film

Here is my final project for the course.  It's a stop motion film made using some action figures I picked up from the store and was shot in my bathroom.  It required a great deal of patience and could always be improved, but I definitely was able to take in a lot about the process of creating a stop motion film.

This first video is the original video but played at 3X speed to follow the requirements for the assignment.



And here is the film at Normal speed.

Lesson Plan (Ideal Computer Access)

Curtis Huso

 

Art 3814

 

Group Stop Motion Music Interpretation.

 

 

Grade Level: Grade 7-8

 

Time Needed: Six 50 minute class periods

 

Focus: The purpose of this project is to give the students a chance to combine stop motion animation with critical interpretation of music.

 

Objectives:

 

a.     6.1.1.2.1 - Analyze the elements in media arts such as image, sound, space, time, motion and sequence.

b.     6.2.1.2.3 - Develop an artistic statement, including how audience and occasion influence creative choices.

c.      Work as a group to create a visual response to an auditory expression.

 

Motivational Resources: The students can be influenced by any number of videos found online that are made using figures and the stop motion technique.  They will view at least one video on storyboarding as well as one video having to do with stop motion animation.


Art Materials: Clear Tape, Digital Camera(s), Tripod(s), Materials for creating an environment for the characters (paper, objects found around the classroom, other ideas), Pipe Cleaners, Clay, Pencils, 3X5 note cards, Scissors, Colored paper, music to be determined by the instructor.

 

Introduction to Lesson:  Animation as we know it is a way of creating moving images using slides played in a fast enough speed to display "movement."  Many animations begin with a plan called a storyboard, which gives an outline and visual layout of the animation through individual panels usually drawn on paper.  (Paries)  Stop motion in particular is using elements existing in reality and usually using a still camera to take each frame, manipulating the subject by hand between capturing frames.  Stop motion often utilizes human like figures to give the illusion of bringing life to lifeless objects.  Barry Purves talks of how to bring life to these "puppets" in a way that evokes life in these otherwise inanimate objects.  By using subtle movements over a longer period of time, animation creates a trick to our eyes.

            The intent of this project is to challenge the students to both analyze a piece of music and proceed to represent it in a visual way.  The purpose is not to make a music video, but instead to create a visual interpretation of what they hear.  Art is an interactive experience that also acts as a language.  Music is also a universal language, one that is open for all to understand. (Brun).  This assignment is made up of two main parts, the first being a critical understanding of a piece of music as selected by the instructor.  The second part of the assignment is to translate what is heard and create a visual response to it first through storyboards, and then a stop motion film of around a minute in length.  The entire class will use the same piece of music.  Suggestions would be instrumental pieces in nature, with the inclusion of many musical changes to give the students more to work with.  Through the course of the project, students will work in groups to create a film that visualizes a response to the music, without the necessity to be played along with it.

 

Instructional Procedure

 

Class 1: Introduce the class to stop motion animation as well as basic storyboarding.  Use an example like one that could be found on Youtube to show both storyboarding and stop motion animation.  Instruct the class on the idea that animation is made up of many images to create the illusion of movement.  After the class is familiarized with the ideas of stop motion and storyboarding, introduce them to the second aspect of the project by having them listen to the selected piece of music.  After they have listened to it, ask for thoughts that come to their mind when they hear this music and put them on the chalk or white board.  These can be colors, feelings, textures, etc.  These can be physical or emotional aspects.  Inform the students that they will be split into groups of 4-5 and they will ultimately be creating stop motion films that respond to the music they've just listened to.  Then break them into groups of 4-5 students a group and provide them with note cards and pencils to begin storyboarding.  Push the idea of abstract rather than conceptual subjects, this means rather than realistic forms, they should use forms that best convey the ideas they have for their short films.  Play the piece of music one more time at the end of class and collect the finished storyboards.

 

Class 2: For this class the students will be given access to sections of the classroom to film their movies.  Once the students are in their groups, give them the art materials listed as supplies and play the piece of music once they are situated.  Rather than playing the music on loop, consider playing the music every ten minutes so the students have more mental freedom to express their interpretations rather than being hit over the head with repetition.  They are then to utilize any supplies given to create an environment for their films.  They should be instructed to use low picture quality on a 4x3 picture ratio (640X480 pixels), as that will make the editing process much smoother.  Also touch on the importance of keeping the camera still and also creating many frames using small changes because each frame will only make up about a tenth of a second.  The students should designate and rotate around alternating who will be manipulating the scene and who will be taking the photos.   Enforce ideas of creating a theme using color to convey emotion.  This is also the time to remind them of some animation techniques such as using their hands as long as their hands are of the frame (this can be done by using clever camera focus).  Today is devoted to gathering images and at the end of class or whenever the groups fill their memory cards, they will transfer their images to the computers they will be editing on.

 

Class 3: This class will again be devoted to capturing images just as the previous session.  Groups will need to generate a large amount of images to create a fluidic film, and so this class and the next will be dedicated to this purpose.  As a way of presenting the pieces, play the music for the class less and less frequently.  While this is up to the individual instructor, it is important to allow the piece to retain what it is, rather than become background noise to the groups.  Students will once again back up their images so as to begin where left off for the next class.

 

Class 4: As stated, this class will be devoted to the generation of frames for the film just like the last.  If groups begin to finish, they may begin editing their films.  To do so, they should bring their films into iMovie or whatever video editing software they can find.  Only play the music once or twice today.  The students can drag their images directly into iMovie and change the time of each frame to about one tenth of a second or less.  The less time each clip is, the cleaner the animation will be but also the shorter the film will be.  Students must balance this so that they create a film that reflects their interpretation about the piece. 

 

Class 5: The entire class should be editing their films this class period.  When students finish, have a productive activity for them to work with.  Go around helping with any technical needs.

 

Class 6: The groups should be given the first part of class to finish their films.  Then they will be asked to present their films.  As the instructor, this is a chance to open up a discussion.  Running different kinds of music to the films the students have created can create contrasts.  Ask them if this creates different feelings for the pieces or if their feelings can change.  What should be displayed is a wide variety of interpretations that work like the telephone game in which the beginning message is the same, but as it progresses, changes can take place.  Being that the case, the less the original piece of music is played throughout the project, the wider the interpretations to it will be.

 

Evaluation/Assessment

 

The evaluation for the project will be based on the objectives stated earlier in the lesson plan as well as what is included in the introduction to the assignment.

 

DBAE Checklist

 

Art Production - Students will develop environments, storyboards, and stop motion animations.

 

Aesthetics - Students will design each scene based on a vision they can collectively envision.

 

Art History - Students will experience stop motion animation similar to how professional animators make films today and in the past.

 

Art Criticism - Students will be asked to provide ideas and criticism to each other as well as point out what works well with each project.  They will also be challenged to translate musical art into visual art.

 

 

Bibliography:

 

Brun, Herbert, "The Listener's Interpretation of Music, An Experience Between Cause and Effect," 1970, http://www.herbertbrun.org/listener.html

 

Paries, Jeff, "Foundation Silverlight 2 Animation," Apress, 2009

 

Purves, Barry, "Stop Motion: Passion, Process and Performance," p. 25, Elsevier Ltd. 2008

 

 

 

            

Lesson Plan (Minimal Computer Access)

Curtis Huso

 

Art 3814

 

Class Stop Motion Film

 

 

Grade Level: Grade 6

 

Time Needed: Five 45 minute class periods

 

Focus: This project's focus will be to give the students experience in creating a stop motion film using a plan and collaborative forces. 

 

Objectives:

 

a.     6.1.1.2.1 - Analyze the elements in media arts such as image, sound, space, time, motion and sequence.

b.     6.2.1.2.3 - Develop an artistic statement, including how audience and occasion influence creative choices.

c.      Develop a film that succeeds in displaying collaborative efforts that followed a planned and thought out process.

 

Motivational Resources: The students can be influenced by any number of videos found online that are made using figures and the stop motion technique.  They will view at least one video on storyboarding as well as one video having to do with stop motion animation.

 

Art Materials: Clear Tape, Digital Camera(s), Tripod(s), Materials for creating an environment for the characters (paper, objects found around the classroom, other ideas), Figures that can be posed such as toys with multiple joints provided by teacher and student contributions, pencils, 3X5 note cards, scissors.


Introduction to Lesson:  Animation as we know it is a way of creating moving images using slides played in a fast enough speed to display "movement."  Many animations begin with a plan called a storyboard, which gives an outline and visual layout of the animation through individual panels usually drawn on paper.  (Paries)  Stop motion in particular is using elements existing in reality and usually using a still camera to take each frame, manipulating the subject by hand between capturing frames.  Stop motion often utilizes human like figures to give the illusion of bringing life to lifeless objects.  Barry Purves talks of how to bring life to these "puppets" in a way that evokes life in these otherwise inanimate objects.  By using subtle movements over a longer period of time, animation creates a trick to our eyes.

            For this project the students will be creating short films using stop motion animation.  These films are intended to expose the students to ideas of motion using subtlety and patience.  The ideas for the films are up to them, but they must (as a group) develop a concept from the ground up and in the end create something that the entire group can agree on.  Through the course of this project, they should develop an understanding for animation as well as a grasp on working with a group of people, each holding their own ideas to create a final product.

 

Instructional Procedure

 

Class 1: Introduce the class to stop motion animation as well as basic storyboarding.  Familiarize them with the ideas behind stop motion using figures or "action figures."  Make it known that the goal is to create life-like qualities out of the life-less figures.  Inform the students (based on what the instructor can provide) that their groups should provide figures from home and that the more movable, the better.  Also inform them that they should not bring figures they have a deep attachment to but they will be able to get them back at the end of the project if they wish. Then split the class into groups based on the number of cameras available, going no smaller than about four students to a group.  Proceed to hand out a stack of note cards to each group as well as a pencil to each student.  Tell the students to discuss with their group what they would like to accomplish for their film (some sort of dance, a short adventure, etc), and that it is their job to each contribute to the storyboard.  Have them keep in mind that the more figures in each scene, the longer each scene will take to create.  After the students create their storyboards they should discuss within their group who will bring what for the next class

 

Class 2: For this class the students will be given access to sections of the classroom to film their movies.  They are then to utilize any supplies given to create an environment for their films.  They should be instructed to use low picture quality on a 4x3 picture ratio (640X480 pixels), as that will make the editing process much smoother.  Also touch on the importance of keeping the camera still and also creating many frames using small changes because each frame will only make up about a tenth of a second.  The students should designate and rotate around alternating who will be manipulating the figures and who will be taking the photos.  To ensure characters can stand on their own, tell them they can apply tape to the feet or other surfaces to keep the characters standing and since it's clear tape, it shouldn't show up on camera.  This is also the time to remind them of some animation techniques such as using their hands as long as their hands are of the frame (this can be done by using clever camera focus).  Today is devoted to gathering images and at the end of class or whenever the groups fill their memory cards, they will transfer their images to the computers they will be editing on.

 

Class 3: This class will again be devoted to capturing images just as the previous session.  If any groups manage to finish capturing their images (to a point they feel is done) they will proceed to editing their films.  To do this they will be asked to drag their files into iMovie or whatever editing software is available.  It will be important for the instructor to be familiar with this process before this class period.  They will then be able to edit their films how they see fit, and drag in music using Garageband, if this is not available the instructor is to provide music that the students can legally use in their movies.  Help out groups in need of any and continue monitoring progress.  Groups should ideally finish capturing images today.

 

Class 4: Each group should ideally finish capturing images on this day.  They should also attempt to finish editing their films and should each hopefully be at least 30-40 seconds in length.  If students are having trouble meeting the requirements, tell them they can incorporate still images to break up the film a bit.  If any groups finish, they can do an activity deemed productive.

 

Class 5: Groups have the first half of class to finish editing films.  The second half of class, groups will present their films to the class. 

 

Evaluation/Assessment

 

The evaluation for the project will be based on the objectives stated earlier in the lesson plan as well as what is included in the introduction to the assignment.

 

DBAE Checklist

 

Art Production - Students will develop characters, environments, storyboards, and stop motion animations.

 

Aesthetics - Students will design each scene based on a vision they can collectively envision.

 

Art History - Students will experience stop motion animation similar to how professional animators make films today and in the past.

 

Art Criticism - Students will be asked to provide ideas and criticism to each other as well as point out what works well with each project.

 

 

Bibliography:

 

Paries, Jeff, "Foundation Silverlight 2 Animation," Apress, 2009

 

Purves, Barry, "Stop Motion: Passion, Process and Performance," p. 25, Elsevier Ltd. 2008

 

 

            

Digital Arts Workshop Parents Day

  First off, here is our finished video!


  This process was a lot of fun.  While we would do some things differently to make the project less busy work, it worked really well and we're pleased with the results.  We were able to create an original piece of work while working hand in hand with students.  I would definitely jump at this chance again.  Very positive experience.