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An animated documentary about New York City.
An animated documentary about New York City.
305 backers pledged $21,335 to help bring this project to life.

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"New York City: An Animated Sketchbook" project video thumbnail
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"New York City: An Animated Sketchbook"

$21,335

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Central Park still
Central Park still
Still from beach pan
Still from beach pan

New York City: An Animated Documentary

UPDATE: The stretch goal is now $25,000.

Last summer I completed 4 minutes of animation toward my work in progress short film, "New York City: An Animated Documentary." 
Now I am asking for your help to finish the project. 

The genesis for the film happened organically, growing out of the thousands of sketches I've done of New Yorkers over the past several years. Drawings of urban life as seen in subways, parks, cafes, bars, basically anywhere people will sit still long enough to capture with my quick contour line. Places where the dynamism of the city is evident and part of the concrete jungle that is the visceral pulse of a thriving city.

Structurally the film will chronicle a day in the life of the teeming metropolis, from the quiet moments of the early morning dog walker, to the late night cacophony of midtown's nightlife. 
The B roll will show little vignettes of people going about their day, slices of urban life captured in a moment, while the A roll will track our protagonist, as he rushes to catch the next subway? Or is he late for his job or anxious to rendezvous with a par amour?  Through this everyman we experience the city as it is now. Who is he? Where is he going? What does he want?
What I find fascinating is the everyday challenges that urbanites meet in public spaces, and the challenge of capturing these conflicts in animation. I also love the idea of an animated documentary. It's a relatively new genre of filmmaking, and what better subject than the city where I've lived for nearly 30 years! 

Visually the film will incorporate 4 different animation techniques:
1.)  Hand drawn flash animation vignettes (taken from sketchbooks)
2.) Stop motion cutout animation ( commuters on the move: via bike, cab, subway, ferry, and on foot.)
3.) Hand-drawn moving through space (animated POV's through the concrete canyons of Manhattan's avenues)
4.) Cinema 4D- a computer application for creating 3D structures and complex camera moves.

How your contribution will help:

-It will make it possible for me to hire an animation assistant.

-It will make it possible for me to hire a great composer to score an original music track. 

-It will make it possible for me to hire a great sound designer who will take all the music, sound effects, and any voice over and mix them beautifully into a seamless whole with the visual.

-It will make it possible for me to do the final edit in a professional studio.

Thank you !

UPDATE: The stretch goal is now $25,000.

With the extra funds I will be able to make a longer film and buy useful animation equipment like a Cintiq. A Cintiq is a flat screen computer monitor with a touch sensitive screen that allows you to draw and animate  without paper.

Risks and challenges

I don't see too many risks on the horizon regarding this project. However because of my busy teaching schedule during the school year, the summer months and winter breaks when I don't teach are my most productive times to do animation.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 5 or more About US$ 5

    For $5 you receive a secret password, where you will view on line new animation scenes in production.

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    Pledge US$ 15 or more About US$ 15

    Receive an invitation to the premier party!
    Meet the crew and me!

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Receive a signed DVD of the finished film.

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    Pledge $150 or more About $150

    Receive a signed original drawing used in the film.

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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 200 or more About US$ 200

    Pose for a portrait and appear as an animated extra.
    (limited to local contributors, as I prefer to draw from life.)

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    Pledge $300 or more About $300

    Receive two signed original drawings used in the film.

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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    Become an associate producer of the film.
    Name will appear prominently in the credits.
    In addition you will receive a signed drawing from the film.

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Funding period

- (30 days)