by Megan - Monday, December 02, 2013 - Permalink
Cyber Monday-Shmyber Monday (amiright?!). This year, it's all about WINNING an iPad mini 2, courtesy of the Animation Chefs. But hurry - you have until midnight on Tuesday December 3rd to submit an animation. Remember, this is a contest, so animations are not judged, but rather give the creators an entry. Names are tossed into the Chefs' Pot-O-Problems and chosen randomly.
Check out the video above from Kids Create Art - an iStopMotion Humpty Project-slash-Doctor Who tribute to inspire your own creation. And don't forget, you can download a FREE trial version of iStopMotion to get you started on creating a stop motion animation for the Animation Chefs' Humpty Project contest. Simply visit this page and click download, then you'll be prompted to register for the free trial version. Happy animating, and good luck!
by Megan - Tuesday, November 26, 2013 - Permalink
The technique of tilt shifting is becoming increasingly popular in the film world. This effect uses tilt shift lenses to manipulate the depth of field and perspective of scenes filmed through a normal lens. By rotating the lens against the image plane (tilt) and the movement of the lens along the image plane (shift), filmmakers are able to obtain a very shallow depth of field, distorting the focus of the image.
Using the tilt shift technique often results in “miniature faking.” The effect of this is a life-sized scene being “faked” to look miniature. This is what Keith Loutit achieved with “The Lion City,” his time-lapse animation of the beauty of Singapore. His idea behind the film was to use the tilt shift technique to let the viewer experience the focus and distance of Singapore for themselves. He also wanted to translate Singapore’s constant heat and humidity, which resulted in some really great shots that played on the distortion of the image’s focus.
The film was shot in all digital stills on Nikon D3s and D4 bodies along with the Canon 5D MKII/Little Bramper combination for some day to night work. Keith also used an extremely large-scale dolly for the tracking shots, and he used lenses whenever possible for the different focusing effects. He edited the film in Final Cut Pro and added effects in After Effects. All of this resulted in an incredibly unique and surreal view of Singapore. Check out Keith Loutit’s “The Lion City” above!
Want to try your hand at creating a film like “The Lion City”? iStopMotion offers features that give you the perfect opportunity to mimic the tilt shift effect in a time lapse just like Loutit’s. Keith Loutit used time-lapse animation to speed up different aspects of his film, such as traffic racing along below the buildings. Try using iStopMotion’s time-lapse feature to show movements sped up in time, like the blooming of a flower, the melting of ice or a sunrise or sunset.
iStopMotion also has its own tilt shift feature that mimics the effect created with specialized tilt shift lenses. It does a fantastic job of tricking the eye into seeing something a bit differently, just as “The Lion City” does. Tilt shift is perfect for stop motion animation’s small movements and individually photographed frames. This unique pairing of tilt shift with stop motion and time lapse recording software allows animators to expand creative expression, manipulating the depth of field of their images so that life-sized locations or subjects appear miniature in size. For a great example, this time lapse from the Munich Olympic Tower was created using iStopMotion’s tilt shift effect. To make your own film using tilt shift, just draw the line you want your image plane rotated against right on the screen, and then adjust the focus. You can even adjust the picture’s color using the scales on the side of the screen to give it more of an interesting effect. Use iStopMotion’s tilt shift feature to show off your own unique perspective!
We’d love to see what you can do with iStopMotion! Hit us with your best “shot!”*Please note: the above example was not created using iStopMotion
by Megan - Friday, November 22, 2013 - Permalink
Check out this great iStopMotion time-lapse video submission from Mathias Thibaud! It details a day in the life of Korpo, which is a small island in the Finnish archipelago. The short film was made using an iPhone 5 connected by Wi-Fi to a Mac using iStopMotion.
“En dag i Korpo,” or “One Day in Korpo,” poses a question we’ve all heard in relation to our home town: “But what do you really do there?!” The film takes us through all of the things a resident of Korpo does on an average day. They include chopping wood, cooking and eating pizza (our personal favorite), cleaning dishes, building furniture, going out to eat at cafes, watching boats go by, reading, and of course, relaxing!
Isn’t it lovely to live in Korpo? We sure think so! Show us what’s wonderful about your own hometown by creating your own iStopMotion video!
by Megan - Monday, November 18, 2013 - Permalink
Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall. Humpty Dumpty won an iPad that’s small! Want to win an iPad mini 2? Our friends the Animation Chefs are giving one away! Just follow these simple steps to enter:
1. Subscribe to Animation Chefs. All you need to do is submit your name and email, and you’ll be on your way to joining all of the exclusive animation fun!
2. After you’ve subscribed, head on over to the members area and watch the short video (also above) to download the cutout template of Humpty Dumpty.
3. Now it’s your turn to create! Use your Humpty Dumpty cutout to make your own short animated film. Seem a bit daunting? Don’t worry … they’re only looking for a 5-15 second movie!
4. Then send the link to your film over to the Animation Chefs, and they’ll toss your name into their Pot-O-Problems. In their next episode, they’ll draw a name from the pot; that person will receive a brand new iPad mini 2!
You must be 18 years or older to enter. Teachers, parents and media mentors: help your young animators win by entering on their behalf. Hurry to enter, though, because the contest ends on December third! Keep in mind, this is not a competition, it's a contest - so everyone has an equal chance at winning.
Best of luck to all of you aspiring animators out there! And don’t forget, iStopMotion is a great way to create stop motion animations. You can even download a FREE trial version of the software (just click "download") to get started! As the Chefs would say, Bon Animate!
PS: Check out episodes and animations from the Animation Chefs, plus read their tips and tricks on animating for inspiration and guidance when creating your own Humpty stop action clip!
by Megan - Friday, November 15, 2013 - Permalink
From October 10, 2013 to August 31, 2014, visitors to The Museum of Modern Art can visit its latest Art Lab installation, which focuses on movement. Located on the first floor of the Lewis B. and Dorothy Cullman Education and Research Building, MoMA Art Labs are designed to offer children and families an immersive experience during their Museum visit.
Now in its sixth year, each Lab installation features a different theme, with activities set up throughout the space that facilitate a deeper relationship between the visitor and the concepts of modern art. We’re extremely proud to say that Boinx’s iStopMotion for iPad plays a role in MoMA Art Lab: Movement. One of a variety of activities in the Lab, iStopMotion for iPad – and stop motion animation in general – enables visitors to experiment with the act of moving objects to create a short film. Other activities featured in the Lab allow visitors to experiment with performance art, discover the gestures artists make when creating art, play with balance while making a mobile, and much more.
MoMA Art Lab: Movement is a great place for kids to explore their creative side and learn more about different ways artists can represent movement in art, design, and film. We strongly encourage everyone out there to visit the Lab and try their hand at some stop motion animation. MoMA Art Lab is open Saturday through Thursday from 10:30am to 4:30pm, and Fridays from 10:30am to 6:30pm. Learn more about MoMA Art Lab: Movement here.
by Megan - Monday, November 11, 2013 - Permalink
If you’re one of over a billion people worldwide that have an iPhone, chances are you use it for nearly everything. When Markus Oertly decided he wanted to use his for quick, on-demand filming of his stop-motion movies, he knew that iStopMotion with its companion Remote Camera app were the perfect choice for him. While he enjoyed the program, he knew the phone would benefit from a stand that would optimize the stability of the image. So Markus decided to create one.
He tried a few different methods, including glue and paperclips, before deciding that the best design was to build the iPhone stand using only a (sturdy) sheet of paper. His 12-year-old daughter was more than happy to make the initial ten working prototypes with the promise of a money reward!
Markus is currently working on several projects with his new iPhone stand prototype for iStopMotion. He’s gotten quite a positive reaction so far. One school that he introduced the stand to thought it was a great idea. Since then, the school has been working on developing a few more ways to get the iPhone and the iPad into the filming scene. Talk about planting the seed of knowledge and watching it grow!
On iStopMotion itself, Markus says that it’s “a cool software, and it has good user interface.” For the past eight years, he has taught students to work with iStopMotion since its very first version.
“It’s very important to know how to use stop-motion or time-lapse movies as a didactical method to learn something new,” Markus says. “Right now, we’re preparing a course for higher-education students. The problem is that they know too much! By building a stop-motion movie, they have to reduce the content as much as possible. With iStopMotion, they have the perfect tool to do this.”
Markus recently taught a course on stop-motion at “Schweizerischen SFIB-Tagung” in Bern, Switzerland using iStopMotion. He was happy to find that the students were really impressed! One person said that Markus’s panel was the highlight of the whole conference. “Later that evening, I got an email with a stop-motion clip which was built right after the panel during the rest of the conference.” He laughs, “I told them before … it’s addictive!”
Be sure to print out one of Markus’s iPhone stand templates to help you create your own iStopMotion film! It’s as easy as pressing “record!”
In case you don't speak German, here is a cheat-sheet for Markus' iPhone stand:
1. Use a sturdy/thick sheet of paper.
2. Cut along the dotted lines.
3. Fold along the solid lines.
Check out this slideshow for further help.
Enjoy the time lapse video above of Kristiansund Harbor in Norway, which Oliver created while at the Nordic Lights Festival earlier this year!
by Megan - Wednesday, November 06, 2013 - Permalink
Geekazine recently checked out iStopMotion for the Mac; here is what he has to say about it:
"Stop motion is an art that some excel in. Claymation and LEGO motion are both types of Stop motion video. Movies like Wallace and Grommet and Chicken Run use this technique. Now you can, too! [...] I am not a stop motion expert by any means, but this software made is easy to create my own videos and animated GIFs.
This is fun software. It made things easy and I was able to put together some great short videos. I can also set up time-lapse to capture longer videos in shorter times. Maybe a sunrise or sunset."
Read the rest of Geekazine's review of iStopMotion here.
by Megan - Thursday, October 31, 2013 - Permalink
Walt Disney Pictures / Via Buzzfeed.com
The day of pumpkins, black cats and candy is finally here! And, if you’re anything like me, the perfect thing to go with a nice big bowl, ahem, piece of candy is a creepy Halloween movie. Buzzfeed recently published an article highlighting one of the most popular Halloween flicks out there, The Nightmare Before Christmas. Did you know that The Nightmare Before Christmas was made entirely using stop motion animation? Buzzfeed found 20 crazy-interesting facts you probably didn’t know about the movie, and some of them are real shockers!
For instance, the stop motion musical was shot at 24 frames per second, meaning that they had to pose multiple characters 24 times for each second of the completed film. The more frames to a second means the more fluid the shot will look when it’s finished. That’s why The Nightmare Before Christmas looks so realistic. The whole film consists of roughly 110,000 frames!
Did you know that the sculpture department consisted of only four people? That accounted for the creation of over 60 different characters. Trap doors were also built underneath the set so animators could pop through and animate in between scenes. That’s definitely an idea to think about when crafting your own stop motion animations!
It’s true that even in the professional film industry, everyone makes mistakes. If there was ever a problem with a frame, the team would have to go back and re-photograph the entire scene. The entire film actually took more than three years to complete. Patience is the key to stop motion animation! But don’t let that scare you away from creating your own stop action film – they can be as long or as short as you want.
Want to read more crazy facts about The Nightmare Before Christmas? Check out the rest of Buzzfeed’s article here.
So, what are your plans for this year’s Halloween? Trick-or-Treating? Dressing up in costume? Or maybe you’ll be putting together a spooky stop motion animation to celebrate! We have some great ideas to get your wands sparking…
1. Make a time-lapse animation of you or a friend carving a jack o’ lantern. This is a great way to show all the hard work and little details that go into something that really isn’t as effortlessly creepy as it looks!
2. You could also make a time-lapse animation of the crazy Halloween makeup process. Want to show off how you went from a regular mortal to a bloodthirsty vampire, a wicked witch or a horrifying ghoul? A time-lapse animation is the perfect way to detail your transformation!
3. Are you giving out candy this year? Another great time-lapse idea is to use iStopMotion to document the emptying candy bowl as the night goes on.
4. What if you could trick AND treat? Animate pieces of your favorite candy to be tasty Halloween tricksters. What trouble is in store for your M&Ms and Reese’s cups this Halloween? The possibilities are endless … of course, don’t eat the candy until AFTER the animation is complete!
5. Try out your best Tim Burton skills! Put together some of your own spooky clay figures and create a Halloween-themed stop motion film. Don’t have clay? Use whatever household objects you can find – paper, string, feathers, and even ordinary objects like utensils – then make them come to life (or death, depending on how you look at it).
6. Whiteboard and chalkboard animations are also a great way to get into the spirit of Halloween. Use stop motion to put a series of orange and black drawings together as moving artwork!
See what iStopMotion ideas you can come up with this on this spooky day. Think you’ve got what it takes to scare the team at Boinx? Give it a shot and send over your best Halloween creations!
by Megan - Wednesday, October 30, 2013 - Permalink
When Don Evelyn took a stop motion course at the University of Trinidad and Tobago as a second-year animation studies student, he knew that the form of animation could be a new career opportunity for him. At the time, he had been unemployed for over two years, despite having an extensive 25-year history in the industries of graphic arts, pre-press and flexography, a special type of printing. As he loved animation, he decided to continue working with stop motion.
In February 2013, while searching for a program to help him with his course work, Don discovered iStopMotion on the Apple Store. After reading the reviews and watching demos on YouTube, Don purchased iStopMotion V3. For his first stop motion homework assignment, he created the short film “Feeding Frenzy Scissors” using iStopMotion, a Logitech 910 1080p video camera, three pairs of scissors and green screen cloth. It took him eight hours to complete.
His second stop motion homework assignment led him to create “Volcanic Eruption Effects”. Don used a 1080p 12 MegaPixel Sony Cybershot camera on a tripod to film the video. The Island City was made out of 14pt board with color print to enhance the diorama. It was used as a foreground shot with a volcano also made out of 14pt board, colored with oil pastels and Play-Doh for the mud and lava. The smoke was created using colored kite paper. Each frame was retouched in Photoshop to create the smoke and ash, and sound effects of a volcanic eruption and earthquake were added to further enhance the video.
By now, Don was becoming skilled in the art of stop motion animation. He created "Edinburgh 500 Pillow Race” for his third homework assignment. It was done over the long weekend of Trinidad’s Carnival 2013 at the Edinburgh 500 Recreational Grounds running course. With the help of two young brothers of the Khan family, Don was able to create the final version using a 1080p Sony Cybershot camera, a tripod, two pillows, two actors, and software including iStopMotion, iMovie and Photoshop.
“Their hard work and patience under the hot Tuesday sun into the night paid off,” Don says. He is thankful for their eager participation in making the video a reality.
“Gorilla Movements”, above, was created using a wire frame and a gorilla cut from foam. Don used a glue gun to create the shape, burning his fingers over and over again for the cause. After the gorilla was assembled, it was painted using two coats of acrylic paint, since the foam kept absorbing the paint as fast as Don could paint it. Don filmed this video using a 910 Logitech 1080p camera and iStopMotion, moving the gorilla’s arms, legs and head frame by frame. The end result was over 560 pictures, which he then edited to remove the pins used to make the gorilla stand and to smooth the movements.
“The program’s ease of use and accuracy in precisely aligning still frames with the previous is a great feature,” Don says about iStopMotion. He also particularly likes the ability to adjust the gamma and the use of green screen keying. Don says that the key to stop motion animation is to realize it can’t be rushed, and that planning is important. “My advice for those who are new to stop motion is to do a storyboard when planning your movie with simple drawings. And by all means, enjoy yourself … it is FUN!”
by Megan - Monday, October 28, 2013 - Permalink
Happy Monday! We've got some exciting news for all you animators out there. Remember when, in the past, you wanted to use iStopMotion with a Canon DSLR camera? You had to do without the greatest feature of iStopMotion – the live preview and semi transparent onion skinning effect that allows you to see your next shot and make adjustments before capturing the frame.
Well, not any more! With the next version of iStopMotion, we are adding live preview for Canon DSLR cameras!
We invite you to download and try the latest beta and let us know what you think.
What Canon DSLRs Are Supported?
We have tested the Canon EOS 5D Mark II, 5D Mark III, 40D, 60D, 60Da, 450D (aka. Rebel XSi / Kiss X2), 550D (aka. Rebel T2i / Kiss X4) and 700D (aka. Rebel T5i / Kiss X7i). Other models that have live view over USB should work as well. Please let us know using the Feedback command in the iStopMotion menu if your Canon DSLR model is not working properly or if you find other areas for improvement.
Nikon user? We haven't forgotten about you! We're currently hard at work to add support for live view with Nikon DSLRs - we'll keep you updated on the progress.