Sunday, December 18, 2011
Saturday, December 3, 2011
Deb Singleton - mother hen and festival director - made sure we were all in the right place at the right time, had all our vouchers, got us all into and out our hotel rooms, made it to the train on time! Barely got a chance to talk to her for the whole time!
Fozia Bano - Awesome assistant to Deb!
Andy Schmidt - Animator extraordinaire at Pixar, was the pre eminent guest, gave a talk about his adventures there. Andy and I started at Pixar at the same time. Didn't talk with him much, he being constantly mobbed.
Richard MacGuire - director and illustrator of children's books and experimental comics.
Linda McCarthy - of the small studio, Tiny Elephants, does stop motion, created the animated intro for this year's festival.
Barry Purves -had a retrospective of several of his stop motion films (Plume, Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra) and then screened his latest, Tchaikovsky, a tribute to the composer and gave a great talk about his production process. I had met him years ago in Ottawa at the ASIFA festival, but not seen him since - great fella.
Geoff Dunbar - finally met the man, shows up in every retrospective of British animation, had seen his films forever, he of countless commercials, Roi Ubu, the feature Cunning Little Vixen and designer and director of the Rupert the Bear piece done with (Sir) Paul McCartney: received a lifetime achievement award at the festival.
Neil Boyle - animator, director, conduit to all that is Dick Williams ( ie, contributing animator on the video version of The Animators' Survival Kit), and just finished a new film, The Last Belle, which will soon be on everyone's lips - he takes large steps!
and last but not least:
Roy Naisbett - Probably the one true Living Legend of Layout these days... I was always aware of the name and the work, but now I can say I have met the man, and am in awe. Besides being Dick Williams' right hand man for years, he did layout for a truly charming new film that was screened as part of the talk on layout : The Last Belle, see above, which will be winning awards everywhere soon. Shared a few pints with the great man. And I can say I was "Naisbetted".
Moment of embarrassment: was given the train tickets at breakfast, then in the rush of getting out of my room, left the the flipping things behind. Didn't discover this until well on the way to london, so had to buy fresh tickets at Waterloo station. Sorry Deb!
Great taxi ride from St. Pancras' to Waterloo Stations: past church (St. Marylbone?) where Dickens was married , past the old Vic, along ??? across the river on Waterloo Bridge, took some left turn on to a small street on the South Bank down saw the Gherkin and the Shard, the Wheel, and a myriad building cranes blotting out the view of Westminster.
Stories on the train to London:
Fraser stories about editing on Little Dorrit, the BBC feature film of 1988. (Joan Greenwood, still had that voice)(Miram Margolyes, "sorry, got to fart")( Alec Guinness, which led Neil B. to tell an anecdote that Guinness, on the set of ?, was doing a scene where he was shaving: he was such a consummate craftsman with his acting and had such a knowledge of filmmaking, that he did the scene so there would be no way to cut or edit around his actions.)
Neil and Roy, stories about Dick Williams, legion.
Geoff Dunbar - showing off his iPad, showed us the interactive storybook version of The Fantastic Flying Books of Morris Lessmore and several other things.
Moment of embarrassment: was given the train tickets at breakfast, then in the rush of getting out of my room, left the the flipping things behind. Didn't discover this until well on the way to London, so had to buy fresh tickets at Waterloo station.
And then there was another train ride, all the way down to Bournemouth, where we went on the Monday to BU, and the National Center for Computer Animation, and do our same presentation for the students of the computer animation program:
Saf: Sefronis Efstathiou, Postgrad Framework Leader, Computer animation Academic Group,
ball of fire, host for us as we did our show.
Anne: one of the students from AI ( the Animation Institute, also on campus at BU) who dragged me off and gave me the guided tour of the animation area.
All the students at AI,who showed me their in progress films and hung out with us for beer and sketching in the on campus pub named for someone literary, damned if I can remember the name now.... but I can remember what I was drinking - - Old Speckled Hen!