Sunday 20 May 2012

First Ever Digital Art.

So I joined the digital age and bought myself a Wacom Bamboo tablet. I mainly wanted it for post-production - stuff like deleting rigs, etc. Of course, I wanted to try out drawing on it too. I found it quite tricky, with things not doing what I wanted them to do. I definitely prefer the traditional method of creating art. It's much easier! Maybe I just need some practice. I used the bundled software - Art Rage 2.6.

So here's my first attempt! I quite like it, though there's not a lot going on. It's meant to be a dark, war-tortured landscape. Concept art for the monkey film.

Also, managed to get some pretty nice short fur. This taupe colour (pictured below) is for the General (he's old). I need to order some brown for the younger soldier. I wrapped some around the plasticine face just to see what it would look like. Finished heads will be latex.

Looks like an 'Eskimonkey' ;D

Monday 7 May 2012

The Monkeys Learned To Build Machines

This is my current project. If I get finished in time, it'll be entered into the animateclay monthly challenge for May (which ends June 6th) - the theme being 'Broken'.

I put the witches on hold for now because it was merely puppet-building practice.

Below, you can see early sketches, ideas and development, and a couple of face sculpts of the 2 main characters. Repeating the 'mask technique' I have used previously, they will be slush-cast in liquid latex. Bodies will be covered in short fur fabric (possibly held firm with a matt glue to avoid 'boiling'), and fitted out with some kind of military uniform. Cool or what?! :D

 Oh, and while I'm here. CHEESECAKE! Of the lemon and lime variety. Baking is art, right.... :)

Gelatin-free. Suitable for animal-lovers.

Monday 5 March 2012

Which Witch??

I was planning on doing another time-lapse drawing, but when I sat down with the paper deciding who to insult attempt, I went into day-dream mode and commenced doodling (like most of us do). Turns out, my inner-self wanted to sketch some witches. Well, that just put me in the mood to get a couple of witch puppets made. Sisters, probably. Cliché, of course.

Here are the roughs:
"Hello boyssss!"

Found some kiddies pencil crayons...

I think I know this person...

The original doodles.

Gonna finalise designs today, so (hopefully) should get the puppets made this week. Progress updates to come...

Friday 2 March 2012

Time-lapse art.

Inspired by the beautiful, and talented Lana Del Rey.

Biro on paper.

I had to mirror the image because the camera was up-side-down. I'm not actually left-handed. I wanted to try out some time-lapse software, which turned out to be pretty useful :)

Monday 20 February 2012

Fantasy Painting

The fisherfrog waits. Patient. Hungry. Alert. Experience tells him, his favourite meal - the cave-dwelling pondpig - cannot, itself, resist the sweet, zesty flavour of the common dusk-faeries. Unmissable as the sun falls, and the day ends, the timid faeries light up the forest floor with a gentle lilac glow. Easy to catch. Easy for bait. However, one bite from these tiny beings can shock a creature 10 times their size into a day-long paralysis. Don't let one sneak up on you...

Acrylics on cheapo (now wrinkly) paper.

In other news, it is the middle (maybe nearing the end) of winter and I find a giant wasp in my workshop (attic)! Is this normal? I have some animating to do this week so it better clear off! Here's a photo of another giant wasp I had in my kitchen a few months ago.

Click to ENLARGE at your own risk...


For anybody that doesn't know Jeff Lafferty - the extremely talented illustrator and artist. And now, stop-motion film-maker. You can read about his exciting new film on its own blog below:

One of the puppets in progress.

But Jeff needs your help. It's not easy making and funding your own film, so he put together a Kickstarter campaign to get things moving. There's not long left, but let's hope for a final push to the goal. You can help him get there if you take a look at the rewards on offer for donating to this fantastic-looking film:

Until next time :D

Sunday 29 January 2012

Playing with anagrams.

Also an anagram of Dean Bycroft.

It might not be immediately obvious, but 'Beyond Craft' is an anagram of Dean Bycroft - hence the name change on the blog. I felt it was far too appropriate to ignore.

I used black card to cut out the letters of my name and animated them on a whiteboard. A few digital effects later and I've got some kind of cheesy branding logo. The light-ray effect taking the cheesometer off the scale... :D

I can't figure out what kind of sound it should have, so at the moment it's mute.

Monday 10 October 2011

Sculpture - Old Face.

Fancied a bit of sculpting inbetween all the other stuff going on (animateclay quarterly challenge underway!).

Haven't decided if it's an old man or an old woman, but it's definitely old. There are some flaws. Some things I like, some I don't. Sculpted in Chavant NSP Le Beaux Touché - way too soft. It's softer than plasticine.

Yep! Toilet roll tube for a neck.

Thursday 30 June 2011


Hopefully, posting this now, will show how much I will have improved in 12 months time. If I don't, I'm gonna give up. You can probably tell I'm not over-the-moon with this short. I had about 4 hours to shoot, compile and edit in time for the deadline, so I'm sticking to that as a reason why it's not very good. June challenge entry. Theme was 'Tie'.

Some progress shots: (click to enlarge).

Sunday 12 June 2011

Limp stills.

A couple of stills showing the puppet and partial set of my monthly challenge entry for May. The challenge theme was 'Limp'. I've had a few problems editing the final film, and as it's now middle of June, this short might never be seen. I just  thought I owe it to the poor doll to post her picture.

Extra lighting for photo purposes. The actual film is darker than this.
The doll was a nightmare to animate. Too tall, no tie-downs.

Thursday 17 March 2011

Spare Parts.

Unlucky old Rough Puppet had to be stripped down to make new puppets this week. I extracted his eyes and nuts (tie-down nuts!), leaving him in a sorry state. Goblin did his best to console the poor fellow.