February 13, 2018

HONESTY laurels!

My short film that I animated for kids to learn about honesty, has picked up a few more festival screenings and one award. So I figure it's time I update the credentials, because my fleet of personal assistants have yet to materialize.

Poster for the short film HONESTY, with PickleWeasel, and festival laurels.
Collecting laurels is fun.

Here we go:

• Ajayu International Animated Short Film Festival 2017, Peru - Official Selection.
• The World Animation Celebration 2017, Los Angeles - Official Selection.
• Canada Shorts 2017, St John NB - Official Selection, WINNER Award of Distinction.
• Providence Childrens Film Festival 2018, Pawtucket RI - Official Selection.
• KidFilm Festival 2018, Dallas - Official Selection.
• Athens AnimFest 2018, Athens Greece - Official Selection, European premiere.

HONESTY was specifically animated with kids in mind, so I entered it into a few childrens film festivals. I'm especially pleased that it got into KidFilm and wow, delighted it made it into Providence - that is such a cool festival, they really care about the filmmaker and give valuable feedback. That Providence Children's Film Festival runs from Feb. 16-25, so if you in the Pawtucket Rhode Island area, get your tickets here.

Thus far this film is entered into about fifty festivals, and I've got twelve rejections and six selections. Rejections hurt, but they help you figure out what festivals your film is right for. I learned this while doing the festival run on my last film, "Papa Pasquale". Celebrate the laurels!


Once I finish my graphic novel, "Ball", I'll set my sights on my next little film. I can't wait to get back to animating.

Support indiefilm for $4 : HONESTY is available for streaming on Teachers Pay Teachers. 



January 29, 2018

"Ball" work-in-progress.

Been busy with all the things of life, but still plugging away on my graphic novel for a few hours every day. The frames are more detailed than I usually do, so it's taking more time.

Here's a few work-in-progress images.

Downshot of girl nearly submerged in rain.
Apparently, water represents the subconscious...

Girl meets the Black & White Thinking Shark.
Facing the Black & White Thinking Shark.

When the story sucks you in, you just have to let it happen. In a way, it's like the story is already there, waiting to be uncovered. I'm super-enjoying this.

More sneak peeks here.


January 4, 2018

Working on a graphic novel: "Ball".

A while ago I was moved to start an illustrated series call Ball. I posted eight chapters (starting HERE) and then stopped, intending to complete the series as a book.

Life happened, my family needed me, I quit drinking and got a dog. There have been some money worries too, so I focused on producing clip art and videos for teachers. Now it's time to draw for myself again. I don't have as many free stretches as I once did, but I do have enough to focus on one of my many projects for a few hours each day. After internalizing Ball for so long, it deserves to be let out.

Here's a sneak peek:

Running through the rain.
Work-in-progress.


 Ball is the story of someone who loses a precious thing, and has to somehow find their way out of darkness. It's... an adventure.

I'll try to post updates as I go, and hope you'll follow along.


September 25, 2017

A laurel for HONESTY

My new little film "HONESTY" has made official selection in The World Animation Celebration. This festival is presented by Animation Libation Studios and Animation Magazine and hosted by Sony Pictures Animation in Culver City, California. These are serious industry voices and players; it's an honour for me as an artist, for my TeachersPayTeachers distribution presence, and for PickleWeasel.


It's the first laurel for HONESTY, but I'm especially excited because I used to read Animation Magazine back in the early '80s. Man, I was doing ink & paint in those days! That's how long I've been in this industry.

My film explores the inner struggle we may face on the pathway to choosing honesty. Animation and video are valuable tools for teachers of many subjects, including life skills and character education. See HONESTY here on Teachers Pay Teachers

I don't know yet which program my film will screen in at the WAC, but for animation fans there will be some real gems; they're selecting from 45 countries! FUN.



The World Animation Celebration takes place at Sony Pictures Animation: 9050 W. Washington Blvd. Culver City, California. ​ Doors open 11:00 am Sat & Sun. Tickets available here on FilmFreeway.



June 19, 2017

HONESTY - Character Education Animation

I have this great friend named Kymberli Barney who once drew me as a gangsta. You might leap to the conclusion that this is frivolous but in my animated world, I equate it to being Knighted. Kymberli can see the essential qualities in a person or a situation, through the clouds and confusion.

I draw many. Few draw me. Kymberli did tho.
She also happens to be the rather brilliant teacher of the Middle School Humans of BHiveU. Which leads me neatly to my next point:

I opened up my shop on Teachers Pay Teachers earlier this year, and while I've been a "pro" artist for over thirty years, it's been a struggle to figure out where I fit as a content provider to educators. Are my specific skills best applied drawing clip art? I'm definitely happier doing story-based projects, and things that provoke empathy, and that's what I do here on my blog, or in my books and films. So when Kymberli suggested I do some PickleWeasel 'character education' drawings and animation for the teacher market, it lit me up. Thank-you Kymberli!

Fun with watermarks.

The first six posters are already up in my shop: Honesty, Trust, Kindness, Cooperation, Perseverance, and Accomplishment. It was pretty challenging to depict these character traits in a single still image, I had to dig deep.

And here's my special announcement: HONESTY is now an animated film. Here is a preview:



Synopsis:
When PickleWeasel meets someone he likes, he decides to cut some flowers to give as a gift. But, when he discovers the flowers belong to someone else, he finds himself in a pickle. What to do! Pretend he doesn't care? Run away? Or be honest? PickleWeasel learns how to listen to his conscience and choose honesty, even when it's difficult.
This HONESTY life skills animation is a fun too to help you teach kids the value of honesty. So important, right? And there's lots of room for discussion of alternate outcomes and feelings in this story. If you want to see the whole thing, check it out here.

Thanks for supporting my work!


May 9, 2017

American thrill ride: The TRUMP

The view of the USA from Canada:
Would you trust these coaster supports?
Today, Trump fired James Comey, the FBI director who was leading the Trump/Russia investigation.

What the hell is going on in America? Every day, several times a day, there's a Donald Trump related twist. What with Donald lobbing big bombs at other countries while blathering praise for dictators, the GOP's weird obsession with undoing Obama's legacy, or the US government plugging Ivanka Trump's really dumb book, it's several full time jobs just trying to keep up!

Will democracy survive? Will The World survive? Just watching it from the outside makes me want to hurl my popcorn.



May 1, 2017

Mother's Day Flip-Cards Are The Bestest Cards.

A couple of months ago I hopped on Teachers Pay Teachers and set up shop, making clipart (clip art? One word, two words??) for teachers.

Like any new business venture, it takes time to build both a catalog of art for sale and a customer base. I'm drawing furiously! There are obviously some great artists out there already well established in the market so how do I find my niche?

And so, for Mothers Day, I give you ...FLIP-CARDS!


Yessss! Mother's Day Flip-able greeting cards - I am so smart.


Once assembled, these babies animate when you flip them up and down. I used drawings from my book, Motherhood, which is on Amazon, but I think I'll soon be posting a download in my shop as well.

I'm still figuring out all the do's and don'ts around selling clip-art and printables on TPT. The learning curve is kinda steep, even for an established stick-figure-drawer like myself. But I'm thinking more animation-based products is where I'm headed.

Each card is $1, or you can get the set of 4 for $3. Don't wait for shipping or delivery, just download, print and BAM, you're making something awesome for the mom in your life. That's my sales pitch; I hate marketing my stuff so I'll shut up now.

Love you!