About this project
Let's look deeper into the world of The Circus:
The Circus got me hired by Ralph Bakshi.
Recently, I worked under Ralph Bakshi as one of the animators on his film, Last Days of Coney Island. After sending drawings to his Twitter page for about 6 months, I was thrilled when two spots opened up to work on the film. I was excited but I had no demo reel to send in, so I sent him the first couple of scenes from The Circus. Later that day the Bakshis wrote back and said they liked my animation, but were considering a few other people for the job. I was on edge. Fortunately, in a few hours they wrote back and told me they had decided to hire me. I was over the moon!
In many ways The Circus is an experimental film.
For this cartoon I adopted a policy of "anything goes." I purposely left out anything resembling a plot to focus purely on the animation. Since the cartoon is traditionally animated it still makes for an entertaining product, even without a script or voice actors .
Because the film is independently produced I can try new techniques, character designs and ideas with total freedom. I can experiment with the way I put a scene together. When I started this film over a year and a half ago, I told myself "if you start working now, when this film is finished you will truly be an animator."
Many paths to a finished scene.
There is no one way to create a scene in The Circus. Some scenes are planned and some are spontaneous. In the elephant sequence, I studied photographs and video of baby elephants to capture the wild energy of a baby elephant at play.
This scene with the character taking his seat in the audience was first storyboarded in pencil.
In contrast, the scene where the fellow gets his burger snatched away had no planning and was animated right into the computer.
The dance scene was done on paper and scanned into the computer for coloring.
As you can see, a lot of work goes into each completed scene, SO...
With your help I can have a proper studio and equipment for the second half of the film.
I joke that if ever there was a cartoon shot "on location" it was The Circus. The first few scenes were done during evenings and weekends in a rented room in Burbank. The dance scene was animated in the apartment where I did my work for Last Days of Coney Island, then inked and colored in a second temporary location. The burger scene was done at my mother's house in North Carolina. The hat scene was done on someone's couch. This is no way to live... I need a studio!
Here is a rough breakdown of where your pledges will be going.
- RENT FOR A STUDIO
- PROPER EQUIPMENT
- PROFESSIONAL AUDIO
- PAY THE FOLKS WHO HELPED ME
- DELIVERING PRIZES AND REWARDS
- KICKSTARTER AND AMAZON PAYMENTS TAKE A PERCENTAGE
Here's a look at some plans for an upcoming scene:
A Camel Gets Into Some Shandy
With your help I can make it happen!
A special thank you to Nick Remes for his wonderful help with the video.
*****Exciting Update! Ren and Stimpy background artist Cheri Pedersen has signed on to help with some backgrounds for The Circus! Here is a sample of her work:
Risks and challenges
Most of the risks and challenges going into this film came from trying to do it with no budget. No time, shoddy equipment, unstable working conditions... these will all be eliminated with your support. After that, the only challenge will be how far I can push the film creatively.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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