Tuesday, 15 December 2009

an extra sheepish post

I did, however, learn that Heartstrings is one of three finalists for 'Best Student Film' at the British Animation Awards 2010. Again I am suspicious of the similarity to a TV talent show and pray that my invitation to go to London doesn't include selling my soul to Simon Cowell. Even if it does, it's still amazing news.

Saturday, 5 December 2009

i wonder if there's a real Cafe Nervosa...

Today Heartstrings is screening in competition at the 2D OR NOT 2D festival in Seattle. It is by far the best named animation festival I've found, which is reason enough to enter, but the awards are called 'Golden Pencil Awards' and they are, as you'd expect, giant pencils. With most festivals I'm happy just to get a screening and the awards, although great, aren't the reason for entering. This festival is different. I want a giant pencil.
I'm sad not to be going. It's one full day of animated shorts and features, Sita Sings The Blues and The Secret Of Kells, with a couple of talks by the film makers. The screenings take pace in an IMAX theatre so my little film will be enormous! Knit and Purl will look like something Godzilla should be fighting and I expect it will be the only chance I get to see that. Last year the festival played host to a talk by Michel Gagne. I'm such a fan that if he were there this year I would've posed as the pilot to get my flight over. I've seen Catch Me If You Can, it looks easy.
I'd love to see Seattle, home of grunge, Bill Gates, a monorail, a space needle, Bruce and Brandon Lee's graves, a walking tour of clocks, lots of gardens, a hammering man statue and the Fremont Troll. It's also the only city in the world where I would feel that a coffee in Starbucks was justified.

Wednesday, 2 December 2009

it took iron willpower to not stop at a hedge puzzle on the way

The hard to read thing on the right is a Mackinnon and Saunders Animation Award and the harder to read thing on the left is a Grand Jury Award, both from the Exposures festival in Manchester. If you could read the one on the left you would see that it doesn't have a name on it, which is because I was a joint winner with Stuck On The Edge by Jennifer Fearnley, and they clearly didn't plan for that. She kindly allowed me to keep the award which normally I would feel bad about, but she had already won two other awards and only has two hands.
Whilst there, I met Peter Saunders who was ridiculously complimentary about Heartstrings and informed me that in all the years they have been judging the award, mine is the first stop motion film that has won. I feel very honoured. Apart from this lovely rectangle of glass my prize is a tour around Mackinnon and Saunders who are currently working on the puppets for the new Tim Burton feature, Frankenweenie. I also now own Peter Saunders' business card which takes pride of place in my wallet, ruling over all the other business cards. Words cannot describe how glad I am that entered this festival.
Manchester had a huge German Christmas market, it just went on and on, and made me wonder who is left to man the markets in Germany. It was still November at the time so I was a Grinch and refused to enter in to the Christmas spirit. A giant, cute, light up Father Christmas almost made it happen but I resisted.