The Morph Affair

As could be predicted our first gig since lockdown has been cancelled, as too has our second and third. To match this my mission to finish The Sin Eater video by our first post lockdown gig has also been…postponed. It’s 3/4 done, but now I have to finish another animation by September. You see CityLit have invited me back on their course to make up for what was missed last year, so it makes sense to spend the time learning something new. I’m shooting Ice Man, morph style.

Remember Morph in Tony Hart?

This involves me having a love affair with Morph. Or perhaps it’s Morph’s paler friend. It’s been very interesting so far. I sculpt him from ice (cream)…hopefully, I’m trying to film this scene tomorrow on the kitchen table. Sometimes I get a distinct feeling that I’m the Ed Wood producer of stop motion animation, but I won’t let this stop me.

The Ice Man, looking a bit worried about what’s to come…

I’m also threatening to hold a small animation festival in October time, more information to come.

The Sin Eater in the Style of Captain Pugwash

Shortly to undertake the eating of Sin

Back in February and March I was trying out all sorts of animation techniques and finishing nothing. Ok I suppose but a little unsatisfactory. So April came along and I decided to set myself a mission, and the mission was and is to finish the Sin Eater animation for the Rude Mechanicals song by the same name.

I started the Sin Eater animation about three years ago, before I did the CityLit animation course even, so I thought it be time to get it done.

Right, I said to myself, I should be strict and set myself a deadline, and the first gig after the lockdown seems like something to celebrate, why not finish it for then? That gives me just two months to complete it in.

Can I do it?

If the progression of the last week is anything to go by – or more accurately the lack of progression and a general stumbling backwards – then no. I was so proud of what I’d got done on Friday, but then discovered a huge mistake and will probably have to scrap the whole scene and film it again. Woe is me.

I like that paper cut out look. I’m doing it in a similar style to Another Glass of Wine. I find stop-motion animation is becoming a love/hate relationship. Perhaps a bit of editing digitally will make it work? But I find too much digital editing and the animation looses its magic.

I need to lock myself away for the next two months and get it done. Unfortunately that’s not looking possible.

Why am I using the slow, old form of animation? Why not use Animate or a similar digital programme?

Not me! I’m stubborn. I like the feel of stop-motion. It reminds me of things I watched as a child, Bagpuss and The Clangers, Ivor the Engine and Captain Pugwash . They were great!

It may seem a little odd doing a horror tale in the style of Captain Pugwash, but that’s not going to stop me!

So much to do, so little time to do it in, and everything seeming to move backwards. As some wise person somewhere once said – Take one step at a time and don’t look up at the whole mountain. Eventually you’ll get there.

Note and sketches

Ice Man

I’ve been experimenting with my ice man lately for the new Rude Mechanicals song Ice Man. Miss Roberts builds herself an ice man to snuggle up to in the cold winter nights. It is a passionate love affair but short lasting as the ice man melts away. Oh dear, poor Miss Roberts.

So, What do you think?

The song wont be coming out for a while yet so I’ve plenty of time to experiment. I think maybe he needs golden shorts.

Goodbye Mr Blackwood

It’s been a long time since my last post. Partly because I’m a lazy good for nothing monkey, and partly because a friend died and I didn’t really want to believe it.

I was rather hoping he had sneaked off to Epping Forest or somewhere like that, and was living a content survivalist life style amongst the trees. I even had a dream about it where he and his partner Emma had a big plan to start up a new eco community in the woods. But no, the body was found, the funeral held. I must admit now, I was probably wrong.

I liked Paul so much, he was someone who felt exciting to be around. Yet despite fancying him there was something slightly frightening about him that meant we could never be that close. I remember meeting him and Emma in a squat party somewhere in North London. They seemed so cool and beautiful, and exciting. They were part of their own scene and they booked Rude Mechanicals for many gigs before putting out our album.

It is puzzling for me, I’ve had a lot of friends die in recent years, and you see I was meant to die first. Twenty years ago the doctors told me the brain condition would kill me within ten years. Twenty years later I’m still here and friends of mine are dying. How can the doctors have been so wrong? I’m not complaining, l’m glad to be still here and relatively ok, it’s just very bemusing. I feel a bit guilty about it.

There are so many people with so many different beliefs, tastes, temperaments in the world. So many arguments, court cases, wars, yet in the end, whoever we are, king or pauper, we will each die (apart from those that want to turn themselves into computers I guess)

Paul and I were going to make an album together, full of odd poetry and found sounds, I let it drift away though, due to poets block and severe laziness. I deeply regret that, it would have been good.

Till we meet again Paul. X

Infinite nothingness

I sit

I wait

I am on a stall at the Satanic Christmas Fayre.

It is small

There isn’t many people

Satan is unpopular this year

And hasn’t bothered to show up

I’m not a Satan worshiper because I’m not a Christian

I’m a Pagan

I believe in many Gods

in everything

I’m particularly fond of Hazelnut trees

And Oaks

Maybe I’m a tree worshipper

Water is amazing!

Or water

A water worshipper

I shall write a song about it

There wouldn’t be much of me without trees and water

But I’m bored

And cold

And want to go home

Or be wrapped in a large blanket by an open fire with a large glass of rum and ginger, and sleep.

Instead I’ll try and take over people’s minds .

“Submit to my will!

Look into my eyes and see the infinite nothingness that awaits”

There’s a tall dark stranger standing in front of me who seems to be drawing a portrait of me…