Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Christmas photos;
Ish the warrior princess demonstrates her Christmas pressie to me.
Nath & Bruno out for big walk on Christmas eve.
Lochcarron Christmas day.
Tal & ish Christmas day.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Christmas ufo & general unconnected wierdness
merry xmas everyone.
a load of us saw an UFO last night.
god i hate this time of year it gives me an unexplicable migrane every year despite me wanting to enjoy it & having low expectations, wether its S.A.D, family dramas, my inability to not-work, chocolate allergy. exhaustion or the constant demands of children....
however enough moaning ive got more interesting things to say.
now i long since shifted my brain out of spooky woo cosmic conspiratorial freaky psychicness, too many new age manipulative mentally ill people have hijacked all the interesting subjects & sullied the interweb with their nut-job agendas, which is a shame , cos i would like some answers to interesting questions.
friday i went to bed with no injuries, in the middle of the night i woke with one foot hurting my leg so i moved it, when i woke that moring the pain was still there, there on my leg is a 8cm long large raised blister inexplicable burn, its like a rope burn, or the edge of an iron. absolutely no explanation.Oh well.
then i flooded the kitchen, but theres a rational explanation for that disaster, and no Christmas presents were damaged.
christmas eve i took my son out for the day we went walking middle of no-where up the hills outside inverness, he chatted at length about conspiracy theorys, which i attempted to de bunk & shed info on, of course when it comes to global war mongers, he's probably, sadly correct.
today on net i found out that theres been big cat sightings where we were walking, kiltarity.
Then coolest, late Christmas night, a fire brigade collegue, phones me up, tells me he's watching a ufo with his sons above the village, i run outside, and sure enough there below the clouds on a flat calm night is a light, i shout my girls & tell them to grab camera. It was brighter than the brightest jupiter or venus gets, but a yellowy, orange colour, i assumed a helicopter, it moved towards us, at height like a search helicopter would, except there was no engines, and it was slower, the speed varied, its course was wobbly the light strength wobbly too, i phoned my parents, they couldnt see it, "a satellite?" below clouds, wrong colour, " hot air balloon?" that bright? on christmas night ?! my phone camera wouldnt get it and as tal struggled to get the night settings on her camera & we stared at it trying to work out what we were seeing, too bright to be a reflected light or light bouncing off clouds, weather balloons seem to be white it would have needed to be a huge mirror to be so bright; it started to pulse, fade, flicker, until high above us, it either faded away or went higher or disappeared into the clouds til we could see it no more.
reasearch finds some earthlight photos that colour, and this certainly is a sesmic activity area, but its all a bit mad... then tal had that ball of light at her feet when she was a child.... but thats another story.
oh bugger the other computers crashed again.
xmas photos another day.

further info, just spoke to other witnessess, apparently there was another previous light, it came from low in the west & moved in a zig zag pattern, eratic, moved upwards & faded out before the one we saw emerged from a similar direction.

it looked the same colour as some earthlight photos from norway.

news, theres been a boxing day earthquake in south scotland, dumfries & galloway, 3.5 on richterscale. the earthlight theory looks compelling at this stage.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Birmingham comics convention 9th & 10th Dec 2006.

Bolt 1 & Rich at the futurequake table.

the lovely page of sketches that various artists did for the kids at work.

had a great weekend, all be it very short & involving lots of travelling, brum being protected by a barrier of impassable roads & imobilised railways. lovely to catch up with people & also lovely being accompanied by my youngest juvey, who also enjoyed herself. She is completely bowled over & chuffed to bits by a tank girl drawing that Rufus Dayglo has done for her, brilliant !
heres Rich on a manga panel with artist Yishan Li, Ilya, and erm... i forget their names, sorry

meanwhile prior to this weekend, ive been working all the others taking my work kids to various Christmas respite trips. The worst being the 4 days to edinburgh trip which was very very hard going, but hopefully we'll see the gains thru the year with the youngters behavior...well it can't get worse !

Sunday, November 19, 2006

and lo the film was finished, the premiere was endured and peace could now descend upon the land.
and back to firetraining on sleety freezing nights with lightning,
and then getting uniforms all deer musky, & muddy in a rescue mission, a hit & run bambie, the police said just leave if for the next car to hit, the Christian said i'll strangle it , the game keeper loaded his rifle, & Ollie, Dave, Ish, Jon & me said stuff that & rescued it, after a night in jons shed she was fully recovered & returned to a local woodland.
and then its been back to work & endless pre-christmas respite outings for 'my' kids. Over the bridge to skye 3 times a week, in foul skye weather, seen 5 car crashes in 3 days, kindof slows one down.and the snows getting lower n thicker on the hills...

Sunday, November 05, 2006

at last its over ! its been a nightmare project from hell, 8 weeks with no training , no payment, no time off work, crappy equipment to make my first attempt at animation... it fact it was worse cos the organisors and person supposed to be training me were the pits of rude & incompedent.
I'd been hunched over the computer so many hours that last monday, with one scene & 11 days to go, my back, neck & shoulders seized up & went into spasm. So i been off my jobs this week mashed on diazipam & grud knows what other pills, depression & dispair soon followed. poor poor poor Richmond & Iseabail & anyone else who got caught in my mental cross fire.
what the hell is it that one invests so much into a project, when really , its hardly going to save the universe ? another disposable set of images, so what ? & its near bloody broke me or my back at least. I'm completely exhausted, hope to feebly get back to work tomorrow. shall be partying tonight on cake, chocs & watching tele.
and of course a big thanks goes to FRIBO also found on myspace for the music sound track at the last minute.
the premier is going to be VERy interesting with all the back stabbing thats gone on, i'm looking forward to the question & answer session....
and yes i've missed everyone !

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

heres the lovely couple at octocon last month.

Heres the three witches, but that wasnt a halloweeen photo, everydays pretty scary around here. Ish went out guising last night as a foxy wee devil. I shuffled around doing dawn of dead impressions, freaking Ish out, i hate drugs. diazipan is scary stuff, and all the other stuff they've got me on..
I'm afraid of computers !

the computer i'm working on can't cope with finishing the film even with an added external harddrive.

ive spent a day off work, semi parayslsed, injected, & mashed out of head in jelly coma diazapaned up, the pain was still there, but i didnt care any more. off work again today trying to stay off pain meds long enough to do a bit of film juggling.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

this film crap just gets worse !
so ive been animating til at least 2 everymorning, working everyday, starting to think ahead beyond one scene at a time, how to put the whole thing together, titles, the missing scene links, etc...
So i got permission to use some music by the talented Ewan MacPherson & his band Fribo, its scandinavian scottishy folky, Ewans my sister in laws brother. This was an excellent breakthrough, but before i can even start trying to tweak the volume or merge a couple of songs to match the pace of the film, i need to finish the film, i have no software & no idea how to do this, i havent heard from my 'mentor'/ trainer in weeks. but thats another story.
and then the next hitch..
i started to flatten out the layers & try to merge the scenes together, and the computer i was supplied with hasnt got the guts to deal with the file sizes...
i have spent around 18 hours attempting to composit the whole thing, i dread to think what will happen when / if i try to export it & change format... but then i have no idea what format the projectionist is looking for , or the means to convert it, i think i may just walk into the premier on the 11th with laptop under arm & say,
" gather around audience i can show you one bit at a time, the playback times all wrong, but you get the jist...oo sorry it crashed again "
i have painfully put my neck out, done my eyes in, have a permenant headache, have a trapped nerve down one arm or some sort of RSI numb hand syndrome, havent spoke to friends or some family members for months, and am going nuts from lack of sleep...
be wary of winning prizes !

Monday, October 23, 2006

so i had a fantastic weekend at Octocon, maynooth near dublin. Met the lovely Mike & leoni Carroll, the oh so wise Harry harrison, & J P Hogan and lots of lovely peeps. poor beleguered brain tried to stretch with all the interesting panels & talks, especially those with my lovely boyfriend person on.

then home, and back to the brain tunnel shrinkage that is the sunny North west... and it took me a week to pick up the animation threads again, with panic gnawing at my bones.
burning the midnight oil to try & get it done, cutting myself to edges of functioning on minimal sleep.

and the film festival has a front page slot, i still havent even got any sounds or score or sound editing facility sorted.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

cracking on with film, but its taking over my life, and sleep, and dreams, i dream in animated images now. week one, ive done 4 seconds worth......

Friday, September 08, 2006

A member of the public who was up here on holiday & attended our fire station open day sent some cool pix of us doing the chop up a car in 10 minutes demo. which was jolly nice.  all of which doesnt further film-making.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

bah blog doesnt like films, even horribly shrunked deformed animated GIFS, you'll have to click a link yourselves;

here be butterflies

day two in the animatrix house, ive vaguely cheered up in the hope that i might actually be able to do some of the film after all. installing the bloody softwares being an all day pain tho, i need californian bums to get out of bed & send me unlock codes.

Monday, September 04, 2006

Okay so its not great but i only started today with the equipment to make the animation film.

The butterfly was my first doodle. & this here is an experiment in changing formats & uploading. It looks completely different in different formats. It should run faster, & i should be able to have it randomly fluttering about, but that is another project.
Its been a bit of a nightmare, its taken 4 weeks of the precious 3 months i had for the organisers to get me the equipment to even start training on, Ive been tearing my hair out in stress while they seem to have been inpervious to any sense of logistics with regard to film-making. its hard for me now to get stuck into it when i'm not sure whats actually achievable in the limited time left, & how much do i compromise & axe the original story ?

the art therapy work with the kids who are carers, Is full on & very challenging, the hundreds of miles commute is good head-space tho.
Eldest daughter Blu-Tak started college today, Hurray !

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Radiohead concert at Meadowbank stadium in Edinburgh tuesday night, bus down & back today. Beck was the highly entertaining support. Radiohead were even better than last time i saw them, with the crowd going mental and Thom kept getting the giggles. Awesome. Played loads o old ones, every one a high point, and some new songs too.
somewhat bruised & aching today however.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

re-thought storyboard again today, taking us back to pretty much my original story in the first place. figure three minutes is basically a pop video, there isnt any time, for character placement, explanations, lead ins, nice conclusions, basically, heres a girl, heres a wolf, heres the hunters, this is what happens, and heres the result will have to do. Its getting too late in the day for all sorts of sub plots, so any more wrangling & i'm tempted to say, " okay, heres a film which features 3 minutes of girl & wolf playing in a forest, NO plot at all "

Saturday, August 19, 2006

been up to neck in it recently, trying to work most days, and deal with son moving to his own place & daughter about to leave home too, on top of trying to crack on with the film, and organising our first public open day at the fire station.
Knocked out the film storyboard sat in a car park one day, the only place to get peace.
needs a huge squish to fit it in 3 minutes.

Last night worked late putting up marquee, and collecting giant bouncy castle etc.
Today, a very successful opening attended by enthusiastic & intrested people. Behold Crew Manager Preston flipping burgers.
Gasp at the way we removed two doors & a roof off a car in front of crowd in 10 minutes & 30 seconds. Be afraid of the 12 tonne engine we borrowed for the day, the 6.5 er is quite enough on these single track roads thankyou very much. laugh at the childrens bouncy castle merriment. Pictures of Fire fighters being attacked by hoards of bouncing children not included.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Took Ishie to the Belladrum tartan Heart Music festival, which she was very grateful for.
an unusal method of moving forward to near the front of the stage involved a big beastie and lots of drumming children with shields. Its that sort of festival, lots of great stuff to look at, shame about the band line up. heres Tal & Jonny, after 'The Automatic', if we had a quid for everytime a drunk eeejit sang the tag-line " whats that coming over the hill, is it a monster?" that weekend, in the "quiet" camping zone, when we were trying to sleep, we coulda bought a fairy costume and sparkly cowboy hat each, and even a pint at the piss stinking beer tent.

conclusion ? we grown ups are getting a little old for this malarkie. Next time the kids can go theirselves. please.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Camping trip of doom, cut short due to midgeys and monsters from LOST. continuing from the irish rope bridge theme, above the waterfall in pic below there is a tiny bridge which certain reluctant persons were tricked into crossing.
Heres the Ishmeister on the viewpoint above the 200ft deep corrie shalloch gorge

Bruno guards the camp.
north coast of scotland sandy beaches & amazing rocks ( and spooky black nights ). Thon wee specs below are my camping chums.meanwhile our other cats disappeared since the old one was put to sleep.

and work on the animation wolf film has started, ive got 9 weeks only to complete it. eeek !