I've been playing with the stop motion editor again...
Having made one claymation video, months ago, I was initially just messing about to re-familiarise myself with the controls of it. The photograpy took around half an hour. Then I ended up getting quite involved in adding titles and redoing the sound and so on.
More on how I did it, after the vid:
Professor Elemental and His Amazing Friends
Released: 1st December 2016
Length: 36 minutes
Available from: Professor Elemental's website
I first came across Professor Elemental somehow on YouTube six years ago as my Facebook's "On This Day" tells me.
I have no idea how I came across it, but The Prof's track "Fighting Trousers" was my (and I suspect many others') introduction to the world of Chap-Hop; hip-hop in the style of an old-fashioned English gent, and Elemental as one of it's more eccentric and best known proponents.
Steampunk doesn't have a specific musical style, but I can think of few artists more fitting to steampunk than live staple, Professor Elemental.
In his pith-helmet and khaki explorer gear, Elemental's persona veers hilariously between experienced, knowledgeable guide to the strange world of his albums, and dangerously clueless halfwit.
There's a sense in his albums that science and adventuring is being done "properly" by others beyond the music, but that The Prof. didn't have the patience for all that nonsense (and they didn't want him in their club), so he grabbed a spanner, nicked some old broken parts and cobbled together his own airship.
I was a fan immediately and several years, several live gigs, a few albums, a drawing or two and even once performing on-stage, dressed as a gentleman chimpanzee, with the man himself and here I am reviewing his latest album.
I only have a few minutes free, but I wanted to just mention a website that I have found interesting and helpful on my freelancing journey.
It is http://thenuschool.com/
Created by designers, it is a wealth of information particularly valuable to newer freelance illustrators and designers. They offer tutorials, newsletters, and advice, but I found their blog particularly interesting.
I love the way it's laid out, and the posts offer information on everything from finding new clients, to writing contracts, to blogging, to pricing strategies.
This last I think could be invaluable because they don't offer the kind of advice on pricing that you've likely already found on the web (you know - those ones that basically tell you you have to ask the same questions you're already asking and coming up blank with), nuschool offer useful, brass tacks, actionable ideas on how to break up your work and price each piece of it.
Their writing is simple, down-to-earth, and relatable while also containing lots of nuggets of usefulness and, being created by designers, being really attractive too! I've been reading articles of theirs that are barely relevant to me, just because I enjoy reading their writing!
Really interestingly though, are their articles on things that might seem a little less obvious, such as managing your life/work balance and advice on how not to let your illustration career consume you.
The cherry on the top for me, were articles on things like self-promotion for introverts, and freelancing with depression. These are things that maybe wouldn't occur to a lot of websites as a valuable resource, but I think that for the right person, these articles could be a really boost and source of inspiration and a reminder that they can do this, and they are not completely wrong for trying.
Check them out, if only just to enjoy the website design!
You know how you go to the internet to look up one little fact about margarine, and then three hours later you're deep in the bowels of Wikipedia, learning all about the childhood of the leader of a peasant revolt in 7th century China and wondering how on Earth you got here? Well I did something like that and it was a fascinating journey (to me anyway), but more importantly, I remember how I got there so I thought I'd share it.
I've learnt a lot about tunnels and how they're made, the London Underground, mining, the largest machines on Earth, and a small town in America that is pretty much uninhabitable due to a fire that has burnt for decades and may continue to burn for centuries (and yet 10 people choose to live there!)!
If you're at all interested, here's what I found out!
It's nearly Father's Day! It's on Sunday June 21st! I thought I'd kick off celebrations a little early by showing a couple of of illustrations that I've found from around the web, that I think say "fatherhood" quite nicely.
I should point out that while I live with a mum, I don't have any children myself, so I may be quite wide of the mark as to what fatherhood actually is. I know what a father feels like as a son, but I don't yet, and may never know what being a father feels like. Maybe I should start deciding what kind of dad I would like to be for if that day comes...
From where I stand now, though, it seems that fatherhood is about love, about teaching, about protection, and about respect. To me, a dad should be someone to look up to - someone who does what's right, not what's easy.
I'm very lucky to have had a dad when I was growing up who showed me all of these things, and who is now a friend who continues to show me these things.
To all those great dads, both those with us and those remembered, and to those sons and daughters thus squired... Happy Father's Day!
Read on for the illustrations...
I was ill the other day, and had to have a couple of days off work. (I'm fine now; thanks for asking!) While I recuperated, I was trying to think what I could do to stave off boredom. I didn't feel up to much, and wasn't really in the mood to commit to a whole film and there was naff all on telly. Then it occurred to me: TED talks! Perfect! They're bite-sized so there's not too much commitment outlaid (this one is 19 minutes long), and they are frequently interesting.
Once I'd watched one, I watched loads, but this was the first one I watched. I love it. I love that he starts with a focus on comfort, and looking at tailoring the actual physical interface between human and prothesis using different materials that are rigid and flexible in appropriate places.
Have a watch. The work this man is talking about and doing with limb replacement is state of the art and it's amazing!
A few days ago, I posted a blog post about some awesome street art I'd found in Digbeth.
Well, after having been bowled over by his work, and having spoken to him, and having had him pointing me at his Behance, I wanted to know if there was any more of his stuff around the web and around Brum. People who know me know that when I find something I like, knowing what I know is never enough, and so this is basically just a bit of a stream of stuff I found out about it and him since then.