We all have ideas and some of them so crazy that we actually don't know whether we can realize them or not, I have one of those, one that will push what talent and economy I might have to breaking point and my age tells me that if it shall be, it must be now. The following will be the story of this journey, failure or not.
So what am I going to do. I'll make a Stop Motion film, not a small Lego or action figure running around on the kitchen table but a real cinema movie, and it must all be on a shoe string budget, if that is not a challenge then I don't know what is.
The film will be about two stone age boys living in the woods with friends and family.
The first picture you see is where we are today but scroll down and you will see how it all began. You can also see more than a hundred episodes in the Stop Motion archive.
It's always nice to get to a point where you can begin to see things take shape and you can get an idea whether you are heading in the right direction. There are still years of work ahead of me, and should I currently provide any advice for someone who will do something similar, it will then be, let the story take place in a desert it will be somewhat easier.
Apart from all the things to be built one of the most urgent tasks is to get the book finished, write the manuscript and screenplay, without screenplay, it is difficult to make plans for everything else. Remember I have very little space so I have to use multiple sets and it will be a disaster if I had made it all to winter forest and then have forgotten footage from summer time.
You have to make many many various objects to fill a forest.
Polystyrene is the material I have chosen to build the stage, both because it is cheap and easily machined with a hot wire cutter.
What I want to show with all these little builds and tools is that there is much more to it than to tell a story and shoot a movie, In a stop motion you need to build everything yourself, unless you have people to do it, and on a budget like me you don't, not that it's a bad thing it is actually one of the most challenging and fun parts of it, and although the tools are small they are expensive and it adds up. At the local hardware store they always smile warm and welcoming when they see me.
My old compressor, one my children grow up to the sound of decided after 50 years not to participate in this project and exploded. Thanks for faithful service and may you rest in peace :)
When you spend all day and night to haul your tools from the workshop into the studio and the next day carrying it all back again, because you can not find your tools in the mess, you realize that you need one of these.
I found out that the printer made a lot of noise so I had to build a soundproofing box for it. In order to prevent it form overheating I had to incorporate a fan, and to monitor when it was running, I had to incorporate a plexiglass window in the door and some light.
Why the printer, so here's how it fits in, first I model the figure in oil-based clay, larger than I need then it is easier to make details, scan it and make a 3D file that I send to the printer, I print it out in exactly the size I need. Of the print I make a form and then a cast in silicone, and now we come to the skeleton and all that, but more on that later.
Lack of experience throughout this adventure will be my expensive companion, I knew it when I started and was unfortunately quite right, and I here suggest that pottery clay is not a good material to mold your figure in! ....instead you must use oil-based clay.
With this camera mount I should be able to reach anywhere on the table in any camera angle, but how well it works, we will only see when we start shooting
I bought 8 of these ricepaper lamps for some soft key light, and I did the same in the workshop.
These six images/builds are more to support the streaming part and not the film, but I took them to show that you can do much yourself if you are on a budget.
Now it's time to connect all the technique again, without it seemed that the studio is dead. Here it should be noted that I have decided to broadcast live from the studio on the daily progress of the film. The technique behind that you can read about here .
What you don't see in the pictures is that I have also made an attic for storage, so at this point I've already burned through a lot of money, not in Hollywood scale but Lars Clausen scale.
The first hurdle. To make the film I should ideally use 600square meters or more, but I have 60 with sloping walls, so I have to use every square millimeter of what I have.
When I claim that I do it all myself, it is not entirely true, I had a little help, almost every day throughout the summer he came and helped me.