When I discovered earlier this year that London Animation Club attendee Lindsay Watson had just become UK representative of the Canadian company Toon Boom, I immediately asked if she would like to come and do a demonstration for us. Lindsay herself is originally from an animation, production and fund-raising background.
As you know, I am anxious to showcase animation in all its forms and in the last twelve months I have been lucky enough to cast the net a lot wider than in previous years. This event was London Animation Club’s first corporate presentation and, just like all our other events, was free. It was also our last of 2014.
Lindsay had mentioned beforehand that her colleague Lilly Vogelensang would also be speaking but it was only at the last minute that I discovered that while Lindsay would be talking in the upstairs room of the Green Man in Fitzrovia, Lilly would be addressing us from her office in Montreal. Thus it came about that we had our very first London Animation Club transatlantic event and the first to use a digital projector in about three years.
Lindsay introduced the evening before handing over to Lilly who gave us an in-depth tutorial on using Toon Boom Harmony and Storyboard Pro.
You can see Lilly’s entire tutorial here:
and read more about Toon Boom Harmony and Storyboard Pro here:
Not only was Lilly’s tutorial an excellent showcase for the possibilities afforded by the software, it would also make an excellent user’s guide for any interested animator. What with Lilly’s disembodied voice and a giant computer screen projected onto the wall, it felt as though we were watching a giant onboard computer on the bridge of a spacecraft – although a spacecraft with wooden pub furniture.
Both Lilly and Lindsay also gave lengthy Q&As, Lilly discussing mainly technical issues of the software, Lindsay more about its history and usage.
It became clear the discussion that Toon Boom is generally the 2D animation software of choice for North American studios for producing long-running animated TV series, such as The Simpsons, American Dad, Family Guy and even South Park; so it will be very interesting to see how Toon Boom is taken up over here in the next few years.
I was delighted also to welcome back erstwhile regular Philip Green, a prolific and entirely self-taught animator, comedian, actor and voice artist. As Toon Boom is generally used by animation studios for producing ongoing series, I was keen to have Philip show us what he has achieved as a solo filmmaker.
The films Philip showed were:
1. Barcode Inventor Checks Out (2012): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v8vgTk4IcnM
2. Shakespeare (Future Copyright Ad) (2012): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vGLQLDy3o9s
3. Grandma’s Bog (2008): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omZhoCTepd8
Philip told us this film has had 7,500,000 hits on YouTube. When I looked today it had had 8,500,000.
4. Blame A Witch (2009): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S1KUpqXLGTg
5. Death & Sex (2012): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zk84j91Cmn4
6. Awesome (2012): http://youtu.be/AZlqOb3V9bs
As a follow-on to the event, Lindsay will be launching a special discount offer on Toon Boom products for London Animation Club members. Watch our Facebook page for further details.
Many thanks to Lindsay, Lilly and Philip and of course to the WiFi at the Green Man W1.
Our next event will be a presentation of work by Lizzy Hobbs on Tuesday 6th January 2014.
Happy New Year.
Love from Martin