Wednesday, 23 May 2018

Festivals I want to submit my film to...

I want to submit my final film to as many film festivals as possible so that it can gain some publicity and I can show off my hard work! I have been researching and found a list of the ones that I am going to submit, all of them with fee entry fees. Below are the main ones that I will be submitting to.

Business Cards

At the beginning of the year I made some business card ideas, pictured below.

However, I decided that I wanted to redesign them as I wasn't happy with the images I had used on them. So, I used my new puppets and new links that I had created and the new design is below. I want them to have a slightly more handmade feel to them so I wrote my name in my own handwriting and used a handwriting script font to match. I also used a deep red colour, which I felt looked a lot more professional than the original pinky colour, as it matched the hearts on my puppets. I wanted the cards to look professional so I edited out the background and used a variety of photoshop brushes to make my own design.

Saturday, 19 May 2018


Here were my original ideas when I started thinking about a brand for myself.
I wanted it to have a hand-drawn feel to it, as stop-motion is very much handmade. So, I designed a few logos playing on the idea of a strawberry as it relates to my last name.

Strawberry doodles!

I then refined them a little more and decided that I most liked the little strawberry waving that's characterised as me.

Here are the final logo and name designs I drew up in Photoshop. I decided that I didn't want colour so that it could go on any document and blend in quite nicely.

I then used these to make my title card!

Monday, 14 May 2018

PP3: Sending Off Applications Elsewhere...

I also wanted to send off my application to a few other studios around the world, because why not!

Here are the studios I have sent off to:
Stoopid Buddy Stoodios
Bix Pix Entertainment
Screen Novelties

Lets see if any get back to me! Even if I were to get some feedback, I still feel like this would be beneficial to me for the future.


PP3: Sending Off LOADS of Speculative Applications in the UK

As I didn't want to pigeon hole myself, I have decided to send off my portfolio, CV and showreel to as many studios as I can.

I found a really good resource for studios in the UK at these links:  (Although some are outdated links)

Here is a list of the studios I have sent my CV & Showreel off to, from all over the UK:
  • Aardman
  • Factory Create (They've explained they have no vacancies currently)
  • Brown Bag Films
  • Makinnon & Saunders
  • Finger Industries
  • Blink Ink
  • Passion Pictures
  • Loose Moose
  • Studio AKA
  • Puppets Magic Studio
  • Wonky Films
  • A+C
  • Carse and Waterman
  • The Operators
  • Second Home Studios
  • Red Door Studios
  • Beakus
  • Kerrupt Animation
  • Chocolate Films
  • Sun and Moon Studios
  • Wild Brain

PP3: Showreel

Friday, 13 April 2018

Freelance: Working with LAU Student Union

LAU Student Union have commissioned me after I won the logo brief, to create them a poster and banner for their website and to promote the buddy scheme.

Here are the requirements I was given to follow, which were pretty simple and free.

Below is the poster. I wanted to really keep the colour scheme of the logo, which I used the colours that Leeds Arts University seem to use for their website ect. I also tried to replicate the font that the Student Union use for a lot of their posters, which the closest font I could find was Futura.

Below is the banner.

I found this task somewhat difficult as someone who doesn't have much to any experience with graphic design, however it definitely taught me a new skill and gave me a little bit of experience in a different field. I'm really happy with the way that the poster turned out and the Union are also really happy with my final design and didn't even require me to change anything! This has given me the confidence that I'm not only an animator and that I do have the skills as a creative to pick up other little briefs such as this one.

PP3: Volunteering at Leeds Young Film Festival

Volunteering at Leeds Young Film Festival was something that was a great opportunity to me as I got to help out in building a life size stop motion set. As a group we built 4 sets in the studio in the Carriageworks and worked with the animators (David Bunting & Paul Couvela) to set up the whole thing.

We had to assemble all of the walls, which were big foam walls and then wallpaper them with this Marvel wallpaper. As none of us had really hung wallpaper before this was a new skill I didn't think I would have learnt on this day! We actually did really well and it wasn't too bad of a DIY job.

 We also had to put together the bed and move all of the furniture into the studio, to make children's bedrooms and play areas. (Here you can see our amazing wallpaper skills)

Working with David we had to figure out how to use the carpet we had so that it looked good but it was a really strange shape and we couldn't cut it. We also laid out a pin board under it so that the puppets could be pinned through their feet into the carpet/board.

 We also set up tables and iPads with stop-motion software on them attached to arm mounts. This was so that children could come in and shoot their own mini stop-motion animations, working alongside the animators.

Volunteering at this festival was a great way to meet people that were of like-mindedness and was a great way to come out of my comfort zone as it's not normally something I would do. I would definitely do it again as it was lots of fun and I got to meet some great people too.

Below is the time lapse of us setting up the different sets!

Wednesday, 21 March 2018

PP3: Printed Textiles Collaboration

As a side project, I had a friend who is a Printed Textiles student and she wanted some of her work animated for the purpose of going on her website and showing off her papercut work.

Katie setting up the piece before letting me loose animating it! She used a drawing for reference.

The final piece.

I found it really fun to animate someone else's work, as I've only really worked with my own papercut pieces, the paper had been mono-printed and the colour palette carefully selected by Katie. It was a really good experience working with all of the little pieces and figuring out how to make it look fun but not too distracting. This was quite a free task and I had pretty much complete freedom; apart from the animation being able to loop.

Below is the final animation I created for Katie. She only wanted the actual piece animating, however I also did a little animation of her name at the end as a bit of extra self promotion, which she loved! I've also exported the animation out into GIF form and given that to Katie so she can use that online.

Flower Power from Stacy Straub on Vimeo.

Saturday, 10 February 2018

PP3: Live Brief with Leeds Arts University

As the Leeds Arts Student Union put out an brief for a logo design, I wanted to give it a go as I had never done this kind of thing before and I felt the brief simple enough for me to give it a go.

The wanted a logo design for their buddy scheme and gave the buzzwords:
  • Welcoming
  • Inclusivity
  • Access
  • Valuing diversity
  • Sense of belonging
  • Community
  • Connections
  • Support
  • Friend
  • Mentor
  • Buddy
They also said:

We would very much like a ‘welcoming’ logo to brand the entire Buddy scheme that will go on online on the Union website and on Estudio, shared through emails and displayed physically on posters, flyers and the Unions Freshers advertising for 2018. 

So, I did a quick sketch in my sketchbook of two hands shaking and then drew this up in Photoshop. Below was my final design and I decided to put it as the University colours so that it would be more appropriate.

I also submitted some other designs as they said it would be good to see a little slogan with it.


And, would you believe I actually won this brief and they are to use my design in 2018 Freshers!
Here's the email stating they want me to also create them a poster, this was a great experience as I had no prior experience with building a logo before.



Saturday, 6 May 2017

A Creative Strategy - PPP Presentation

In this recent presentation that I did, I had to analyse who I now was an animator and learner as well as my progression through level 5 PPP and Responsive.

I started by going over how I felt at the beginning of level 5 and how I felt about certain aspects of animation such as stop-motion. In the last PPP presentation of level 4 I explained that this was a major area I wanted to explore and one of my main interests for the next year.

I then went on to talk about the beginning of the responsive module, as at the start of the year I was eager to get a big head start on the module and produced two animations straight away that were fully digital. I explained how I wasn't really proud of these animations and that I learnt from the mistake of choosing digital as it was something I was most comfortable with at the time. I wish, looking back now, that I had gone with my heart and experimented with stop-motion. However, this still gave me a good learning experience as I had never entered live briefs before.

Next, I talked about the other side of responsive, which was the group animation we created for the brief 'Thirsty Planet'. This was a papercut animation that I was really proud of in the end, and I feel this might have also been due to being part of a team, where I feel I work best.

My next slide explained how I have built my social media presence over the past year and how this has benefitted me as an animator. One of my main goals for this year was to develop my portfolio of work as I felt I didn't really like the animations I made from the first year and I was only just getting to grips with animation as a whole. This year I now have multiple stop-motion animations posted onto my Vimeo as well as behind the scenes pictures built up on my Instagram. Continuing this will be really good for me as having something easily accessible for others to see my work is always a good thing.

I also spoke about my interactions with professionals within the animation industry and the way that I have been using LinkedIn to talk to people casually. I have really enjoyed this part of PPP, as it has made me more comfortable approaching people as they actually aren't so scary and are actually really lovely! I also made a connection at Aardman, where he said I can talk to him anytime about tips or if I want any pointers of my work.

The other week, we visited Factory and Makinnon and Saunders. I talked about how this has inspired me as an animator and allowed me to be more confident in the fact that I know I want to be a stop-motion animator.

I also compared my work from this time last year to now to basically show the vast improvement in content and style I have achieved over this past year. This is something I am really proud of.

Puppets were another thing I compared as I have developed my puppet and model making skills over level 5. I feel these slides were important to show as it shows my practical development.

Into level 6, I wanted to just go over my future plans such as maybe trying replacement animation and lip sync as well as trying out some new puppet-making methods. I especially want to focus on lip sync as this will be something that I will need to have the ability to do in the industry and to show in my showreel.

My other plans for the next year are to practice my walk cycles and this is another thing I want to include in my end of uni showreel!

Finally, I went over the summary of the whole year and how I definitely feel that I have progressed and been able to establish myself a little more as an animator and find my 'niche'. I'm really happy with the way that level 5 has turned out and I'm excited for the next year to come!

Friday, 5 May 2017

Submitting to a Film Festival! - Keighley Film Festival

I was recently looking for at free to enter film festivals when I came across the Keighley Film Festival, it is free to enter and there is a short film animation category where it has to be under 10 mins in length.

All of my current animations are very short and only around 30 seconds in length, however I was was like why not give it a go anyway! So, I entered my film 'Touch', that I created for my COP module as this one of my favourite animations I have done so far. Below is when I had sent off my animation! The festival is actually located just outside of Leeds, which I didn't realise until I saw the 'leedscitycollege' email address, what a coincidence.

I am excited to see if my animation gets selected to be shown and I hope to hear back from them soon.

Monday, 1 May 2017

Building Puppets Progression

Puppets is something that I am still new to now and this year I decided to develop my skills in this so that I could practice making some other puppets over the Summer, knowing the materials needed and the best method. Even though I don't want to be a puppet maker, I still want nice puppets for my future animations!

This was this first puppet I had made in first year. As my first ever puppet it wasn't too bad, however the arms were way to bulky and she was completely off balance!

I wanted to try plasticine again, just because it's fun to mould and animate with so I made this character for my COP2.

This character was a much better puppet and I kept him super simple so that he was easy to animate. I wanted him to look a little rough and not completely perfect, which is why I left fingerprints on him, as the message was the imperfections of stop-motion.

I also learnt a new method of puppet making! Felting.

Needlefelting was completely new to me but I really wanted to try it as I loved the effect and I was really inspired after seeing 'Oh Willy'. I have made two puppets in this method now as I like it so much! It's actually really simple, but it looks really refined and effective in animation. I had the issue of it possibly boiling in animation, however if you trim the puppet with scissors before animating this helps keep the stray hairs down.

My future plans for making puppets is to possibly make a human character next and try making some costumes and see how I can progress in that side of puppet building as I have so far only made characters that have no clothes.