Monday, 6 December 2021

BNU Terminates "No Detriment Policy"

"No Detriment Policy" has now ended
Last year Buckinghamshire New University introduced a "no detriment" policy in response to the Corona Virus Pandemic. 

The policy remained in force until the end of the 2020-21 Academic Year and - in effect - gave all our students an extra 10 working days (two calendar weeks) to hand in assessments, beyond the formal deadline.

"No detriment" meant that the work submitted would not suffer any detriment, ie it would still be graded as if it were handed in on time. All our students should be aware that this policy is now at an end, and no longer applies. 

Friday, 26 November 2021

Young Cartoonist of the Year Competition

Deadline 5 January 2022
The Young Cartoonists of the Year Competition is back; the deadline for submissions is 5 January 2022.

Hosted by the Cartoon Museum, re-opened after its long Covid-19-slumber, the annual competition seeks to reward rising cartoon talent. 

Judges include Martin Rowson (The Guardian), Christian Adams (Evening Standard), Banx (FT), Peter Brookes (The Times), Nick Newman (Private Eye), and Matt from the Daily Telegraph.  Entry is free. 

Wednesday, 24 November 2021

Why Animators Must Fail Upwards

Animation is a hard craft to master, requiring a lot of practice. All our early efforts are likely to be unsatisafctory. Which is why animators need to fail upwards. 

All of us fail in most of the things that we do for the first time.  The key to success is to keep failing, fail better, and fail faster.

Sunday, 21 November 2021

Sesame Street Audio Archive

For animators looking for inspiration for some cartoony animation with dialogue, one great place to search is the Sesame Street Sound Archive, which you can find here

The Sesame Street Sound Archive is full of cartoony audio clips, which work well with cartoony characters such as Mr Buttons and also the Willy rig.  It's especially useful for our Character Performance Module DA702

To get started, try picking a very short line of dialogue, download it and then drag and drop it into your timeline in Maya. To see more about how to use audio files in Maya, follow this link.  To see more about how to use the "Willy" rig, see this blog post.

Wednesday, 17 November 2021

Float Folks Best Trailer at Art Film Awards

Float Folks wins Best Trailer at Art Film Awards
Congratulations to the makers of "The Float Folks", the short teaser/trailer made at BNU by our animation students, which has won "Best Animated Trailer" at the Art Film Awards.

The Float Folks is an animated TV Series created by Ian Foyle and directed by Monika Dzikowicz, currently in development.  The Float Folks has won many festival awards.

Sunday, 14 November 2021

"It Doesn't Work!" - How to Solve Tech Troubles

Why Doesn't It Work?
"It doesn't work"  is a problem frequently encountered by our students at BNU.

Remember that every technical problem, no matter how infuriating, has a solution. One of the key skills our students learn at BNU is how to solve problems - and find solutions, so that production work can continue. Digital artists face an endless stream of technical hiccups.

Tuesday, 9 November 2021

Float Folks Best Trailer at Dreamachine Fest

Congratulations to the makers of "The Float Folks", the short teaser/trailer made at BNU by our animation students, which has won "Best Animated Trailer" at the Dreamachine Film Fest.

The Float Folks is an animated TV Series created by Ian Foyle and directed by Monika Dzikowicz, currently in development.

The Float Folks has won multiple festival awards.

Monday, 8 November 2021

Free Script Toggles Control Curves On and Off

Morpheus curves
Below is a very useful MEL (Maya Embedded Language) script for Maya animators, developed by Justin Barratt, and one which we are recommending for all our students. It's a very useful tool, used to toggle the visibility of your animation rigs' control curves on and off.

All you have to do is paste the lines of script below in your script editor in Maya (under the MEL tab) and then save save it to a shelf in the usual way. 
Once you've done this, it should help to speed up your workflow and make you a faster, and better, animator.

Friday, 5 November 2021

Float Folks Wins Future of Film Award

Floats Folks Best Trailer at Future of Film Awards
Congratulations to the makers of "The Float Folks", the short teaser/trailer made at BNU by our animation students, which has won "Best Trailer" at the Future of Film Awards. 

The Float Folks is an animated TV Series created by Ian Foyle and directed by Monika Dzikowicz, currently in development.

Thursday, 4 November 2021

Rookies' Knight Spider Animation Competition

Knight Spider rig from The Rookies
We're encouraging all our animation students to enter this new animation competition from The Rookies.

It's a special character animation contest for the brand new Knight Spider rig for Maya, which you can find here.  

The animation contest is open to students and recent graduates; entries opened on 24 September and the contest closes on 14 January 2022. 

Wednesday, 3 November 2021

Luxo Jr. Lamp Hop by Michael Acosta



Our MA animation students are currently tackling their first Module - DA701 Locomotion and Mechanics. Part of the module is learning to animate inanimate objects - in this case the Luxo Lamp - made famous by one of Pixar's first animated shorts, Luxo Jr.  Above is a lovely example of lamp animation by MA student Michael Acosta, playfully referencing the original Pixar animation with his own twist.

Tuesday, 2 November 2021

Float Folks Best Trailer at Vesuvius Fest

"Float Folks" Best Trailer at Vesuvius Fest
Congratulations to the makers of "The Float Folks", the short teaser/trailer made at BNU by our animation students, which has won "Best Trailer" at the Vesuvius Film Festival. 

The Float Folks is an animated TV Series created by Ian Foyle and directed by Monika Dzikowicz, currently in development.

Monday, 1 November 2021

Stanislavski's Questions for Actors & Animators

Constantin Stanislavski
Constantin Stanislavski was a Russian actor and theatre director who was one of the first to set down in writing the principles of great acting.

Many actors credit him with inventing "the Method" - the means by which actors immerse themselves in a character. 

Animators are actors with a pencil or a mouse, and we need to give a performance that is just as credible as anything that a stage or screen actor will create.

So, what can animators learn from Stanislavski's seven questions for actors?

Tuesday, 26 October 2021

Float Folks Wins Best Trailer at Halicarnassus

Congratulations to the makers of "The Float Folks", the short teaser/trailer made at BNU by our animation students, which has won "Best Trailer" at the Halicarnassus Film Festival. 

The Float Folks is a TV Series created by Ian Foyle and directed by Monika Dzikowicz, currently in development.

The Float Folks is a fun, watery world, a miniature community of slightly oddball individuals.

Sunday, 24 October 2021

UCAS Applications Open for 2022

UCAS - deadline January 26th
If you're thinking of applying to Bucks to study on our BA in Animation, the official UCAS application system is now open.  Applications are due by 26th January 2022.

It's always a good idea to get your application in early, so apply now and tidy up your portfolio later.

Friday, 15 October 2021

Who's Who in Bucks Animation 2021

Alex Williams at Bucks New University
Who's Who on our Online Master of Arts in Animation?

For our new animation students starting with us in September, there is a good deal of information to take on board, including who does what at Bucks.

There are a number of people involved in delivering our MA - the first online MA in animation in the world.

Below is a brief guide to help our new cohort of students figure out who's who, who does what, and how to get in touch with the key people whose job it is to help our students get excellent results.

Friday, 1 October 2021

Thursday, 30 September 2021

Jobs and Careers Playlist at YouTube

For all our graduates currently looking for work, check out the Animation Apprentice jobs and careers playlist at YouTube. There are plenty of opportunities to find work in the expanding animation industry, but it is important to have a solid demo reel and a well-curated LinkedIn profile - recruiters live at LinkedIn.  The jobs and careers playlist at YouTube offers advice and support on how to land that crucial first job in industry.

Wednesday, 29 September 2021

Toonboom Harmony Free Demo 30 Sept at 5pm

Toonboom Harmony with Andy Wyatt and Harry R
Tomorrow Thursday 30 September at 5pm Escape Studios in London is hosting a free Toonboom Harmony Event with Harmony experts Andy Wyatt and Harry Ravelomananstsoa. 

Andy Wyatt is Director of Animation Associates & Toon Boom UK; he will discuss what skills the 2D animation industry is looking for, offer portfolio advice and insights into the Harmony pipeline. 

Wednesday, 8 September 2021

Optimise Truong Maya Rigs for Unreal Engine


Truong CG, who creates many of the best free (and nearly free) rigs for student use, has released the video above to optimise his rigs for Unreal Engine.  All of Truong's latest rigs are fully compatible with Unreal Engine since they are all joints-based for both body and face. However, for Truong's older rigs, this video will help optimise the rigs for use in Unreal Engine, giving all the advantages of real-time rendering.