animation – week 1 – stop motion

The seed

This week I worked with Lizzy Chiappini. We were tasked to create a 30 seconds loop stop motion animation video. As a starting point for the process, we saw each other’s portfolio and tried to find out points of intersections in the subjects of our past artworks. We found out that both of us are interested in somehow deconstructing the binarism between humans and nature. We see nature as a environment where we can create dialogues, rather than explore it in a colonial way, just for our own goods, without thinking about and trying to listen to other vegetables/animal/mineral perspectives and the consequences of its exploration.

Find the result of our work here or watch it below.

Stop Motion animation by Fernando Gregorio and Lizzy Chiappini

Notes about the process of creation

After watching and talking about some references as listed below, we decided to work with silhouette paper cut animation. Our initial concept for the storytelling was an egg or a seed from where a half-human/half-vegetal would grow. This initial image made us think about other compositions and combinations of human, animal and vegetable forms.

References

Seed growing
  • Andrea Wan;
“Three of a kind” by Andre Wan
  • Kara Walker;
Gone: An Historical Romance of a Civil War as It Occurred b’tween the Dusky Thighs of One Young Negress and Her Heart, 1994, by Kara Walker

The whole process was very fluid and we could develop the concept and change the initial storyboard while we were going deeper with the practice. It was very pleasant to collaborate with Lizzy, who also has an artistic background and is opened for experimental processes.

The shooting was long and slow, but very pleasant. We had to split it in two different days, which can be noticed by the sudden light change in the animation, probably because we didn’t notice that the light table was upside down. The hardest part was fitting some big elements inside of our seed and moving them separately. Sometimes we had to cut them in the middle to be able to do it.

Materials

  • Canon 5D Mark III;
  • Lens with Zoom;
  • Power Supply for the camera;
  • Mini USB Cable;
  • Tripod;
  • Software: Dragon Frame;
  • Light Table;
  • Black Paper;
  • Scissors;
  • Pencils to move the papers slowly while animating.
  • Wire to articulate/create the joints of our characters;
  • Tape to glue the joints and our elements to the light table while they shouldn’t move.

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