Happy Feet animator comes to Dorset County Museum

Sofronis Efstathiou, National School of Computer Animation, Bournemouth University

Sofronis Efstathiou, National School of Computer Animation, Bournemouth University

The current exhibition at Dorset County Museum, Pardoes ANIMATE!, has proved to be very popular with summer visitors.  As part of its ongoing animation theme, a professional animator and lecturer at
Bournemouth University’s National Centre for Computer Animation is giving a talk about how Animation can become a viable career.

Sofronis Efstathiou will discuss a variety of student animation projects, explaining the different types of technical and creative skills used in their creation.  He will also emphasise  the importance of art, maths and science in this field and explain how they can directly affect the success of an animated film.  The presentation will be followed by a question and answer session.

Before becoming Programme Leader of the MA course in 3D Computer Animation at Bournemouth University, Sofronis worked in the Film and Games industry on projects such as “Happy Feet”, “300” and “Fable 2”, training artists and production staff on projects that would go on to win an Oscar, a BAFTA and a Games BAFTA.

Sofronis Efstathiou talk takes place on Thursday 12th September 2013 at 6.00pm. Entry to this lecture is FREE

For further information contact the Museum on 01305 262735 or check the website on www.dorsetcountymuseum.org

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Fantastic Creatures at Dorset County Museum: Ray Harryhausen talk and film screening by Tony Dalton

Tony Dalton, Curator of The Ray and Diana Harryhausen Foundation

Tony Dalton, Curator of The Ray and Diana Harryhausen Foundation

An exciting talk at Dorset County Museum forms part of the current Pardoes ANIMATE! exhibition.

‘The Art of Ray Harryhausen’, by Tony Dalton, Curator of The Ray & Diana Harryhausen Foundation and film historian, will illustrate Ray’s creation of unique fantastic creatures and his unequalled style of model animation with images from his career.  Beginning with a young Ray watching the 1933 King Kong in Hollywood, he was so inspired by the film he decided to try to recreate it and bring his own incredible creatures to ‘life’.  Over the years his films included such fantasy classics as Mighty Joe Young (1949), The Beast From 20,000 Fathoms (1952), The 7th Voyage of Sinbad (1958), Jason and the Argonauts (1963), One Million Years B.C. (1966), The Golden Voyage of Sinbad (1973) and Clash of the Titans (1981).

This talk takes place on Wednesday 28th August at 7.30pm. Tickets cost £5.00 for adults and £2.50 for children (aged 0-16) and are available from the Museum Shop on 01305 756827 or by emailing shop@dorsetcountymuseum.org.

A selection of Ray Harryhausen books available from the museum shop

A selection of Ray Harryhausen books available from the museum shop

There will be a book signing afterwards of Ray and Tony’s books, in particular, Ray Harryhausen: A life in Pictures which is available in the Museum shop.

Doors open at 7.00pm providing an opportunity to see the exhibition before the talk.



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A selection of short films from the Animated Exeter Festival

Animated ExeterOn Wednesday 17th July 2013, the Dorset County Museum will be screening a selection of short films from the Animated Exeter Festival 2013.  Showcasing a range of exciting new animators from the UK including independent animators, recent graduates, and young people’s animation. Screening starts at 6.30pm (doors open at 6.00pm) entry is FREE, though a £3 donation encouraged.

For further information contact the Museum on 01305 262735 or check the website on www.dorsetcountymuseum.org


Here is a programme of films that will be shown:

Independent Animators

  • The Goat Herder and his lots and lots and lots of Goats dir. William Rose, 7:12 mins. Inspired by my two year old niece who having seen a goat herder in Spain kept chanting ‘lots and lots and lots of goats!’ The story follows a day in the life of a goat herder and his flock of goats as they travel up and down the mountains of Spain, There is no dialogue. The story is told using sound and movement.
  • Superfast Samosa dir. Sundeep Toor, 1:28 mins. Breakout the mango chutney, cos everyone wants a piece of him! The gingerbread man story retold with a Bollywood twist.
  • The Fat Cat dir. Mole Hill, 1:00 mins. Etched in wax from a garage somewhere in Cheshire, the fat cat always gets what it wants.
  • Saturdays dir. Hanieh Shojaee, 5:31 mins. In an ederly nursing home it is a custom that every Saturday a visitor family come and choose one of the old people as their new grandparent. Today is one of those Saturdays.
  • Focus dir. Andy Shackleford, 4:44 mins. This music video visualises the journey singer/songwriter Ryan Keen has taken to follow his dream, being brave and taking that fearful step away from the security of an everyday job and living to pursue his dreams as a musician.
  • Birdfood dir. Richard Keane, 4:44 mins. A man plans to eat his lunch in the park but the local pigeons have other ideas!

Under 18s

  • Wicked Witch dir. Laurie Cousins. Under 12, 2:10 mins. Hand drawn animation in which a witch is looking for a green bellied rat for her potion but a boy stops her getting it.
  • Polar Bear dir. Joe Blandamer , Under 12, 00:45 mins. Climate change in the Arctic and its effects on Polar Bears.
  • Anwylyd & The Donkey dir. Corris Primary School. Under 12, 7:38 mins. When the Prince gets turned into a Donkey, he must travel across the entire kingdom in search of a way to break the hideous spell upon him. A farmer’s daughter, a wise pig and a two headed dragon will all help him solve the riddle and restore the Kingdom to normal.
  • The Helpful Dead dir. Wyke Regis Junior School. Under 12, 3 mins.  A grieving mother, an Olympic sailor in trouble and a drowning boy who becomes a legend: the Helpful Deaf is the story of a tall ship sunk off Dead Man’s Cove, Portland in 1872, and an emotional link with the 2012 sailing events.
  • Farmyard’s Got Talent! dir. Joe Blandamer . Under 18, 01:01 mins. Crackling the pig tries his hand at animal impersonations!
  • Greyworth Museum dir. Aelfred Hillman. Under 12, 1:27 mins. The ‘Greyworth Museum’ is thrown into chaos when its prize exhibit is stolen in broad day light!
  • Laurilie takes a Bath Mary Tavy and Brentor Primary Schools. Under 12, 1:30 mins. Looking at the theme of water.
  • Helium dir. Joe Blandamer. Under 18, 00:46 mins. A boy investigates the effects of helium with a surprising result!

2012 Graduates

  • Merfolk dir. Rory Waudby-Tolley, Bournemouth University, NCCA. 2:34 mins. An animated mock-umentary film set in an alternate reality. Forced to leave the polluted oceans an elderly couple of Merfolk refugees discuss the society they now live in and how they have adapted to their new life.
  • Playtime dirs. Benjamin Kwok & Bhavik Patel/ Director Benjamin Kwok, Bournemouth University, NCCA. 2:12 mins. A fun quirky, visual effects filled short about giant toys which live in our city. They have lived with us for a while and have started to integrate themselves into our day to day life with varying degrees of success.
  • Dear Diary dir. Julia Pressler. Bournemouth University, NCCA. 1:26 mins. If you found the diary of someone you liked, would you read it or not? This is the question ordinary guy Todd has to face in the animated short. His struggle with his own curiosity is presented in a simple but artistic way combining digital 2D silhouettes with modern 3D animations.
  • Dandelion dir. Tengs Sviggum, University of Glamorgan. 2:04 mins. A gentle breeze brings with it the seeds of change.
  • Azoic dirs. Jack Kersey, Anthony Green, David Khosab. Bournemouth University, NCCA. 2:12 mins. This project was an abstract piece, set in an entirely fictional world. It presents us with a visual journey through a world populated by computer inspired creatures and environments. In each scene there is a theme from nature built using computer components and other technology inspired devices.
  • Cosmo dir. Gregory Holgate, Arts University College, Bournemouth. 4:19 mins. Stuck in the rafters of a grand theatre, a lamp dreams of the spotlight.
  • Undercolour dir. Emanuela Gatto, NCCA, Bournemouth. 4:41 mins. Undercolour is a short animation, genre drama. It is based on Plato’s Myth of the Cave and it talks about an epiphany. Unfortunately the knowledge of truth generates a sense of alienation for the main character.
  • The Monster dir. Toby Dixon, Arts University College, Bournemouth. 3:29 mins. A brave little warrior and her trusty steed are on a quest to rid the forest of a monster. But is Little truly prepared for what will face her at the end of her journey?
  • Shell and Paddy dir.Thomas Spettel & Joseph Hill, University College, Falmouth. 4 mins. Paddy a low life scavenger finds a tasty snack which is Shell a cute looking bug whose hard shell protects him from anything with big teeth but maybe not hands. However small Shell has no intention of becoming a snack. It’s slapstick comedy in a weird but funny animal world.

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New Exhibition: Pardoes ANIMATE! exhibition opens on the 13th July 2013 at the Dorset County Museum

Animate Exhibition 2013Pardoes ANIMATE! exhibition is an exciting new exhibition opening up the world of film animation to all enthusiasts of this fascinating art form.

Yvonne Hellin-Hobbs, curator of the exhibition said, “We hope the ANIMATE! exhibition will illustrate and illuminate the background of the animation art form for a whole new generation of fans. It will also awaken memories in an older generation by bringing some all- time favourite characters to life again at Dorset County Museum.”

ANIMATE! will include over 120 objects on loan from Exeter University, the British Film Institute Archive, The Ray Harryhausen Foundation, David Hand Productions and independent local animators.

One of the Hydra heads from the 1963 film 'Jason and the Argonauts' - The Ray and Diana Harryhausen Foundation © 2013

One of the Hydra heads from the 1963 film ‘Jason and the Argonauts’  © The Ray and Diana Harryhausen Foundation

The artefacts range from Victorian Flick books, zoetropes, shadow theatres, puppets and early animation machines to posters, catalogues and publicity material, original Disney and Hungarian film cells, concept sketches, sheet music and merchandising toys.
Visitors can follow the development of animation through time and see how the technology has developed to the present day, highlighting the work of ground-breaking animators along the way. There will also be a computerised animation package available within the exhibition space for youngsters to make their own, simple animated films.

A screening area will show examples of animated films from the simplicity of early work to the complex 3D animation that we are now so familiar with. It will illustrate how animation has and can be used in commercial

Shaun the Sheep © Aardman Studios

Shaun the Sheep © Aardman Studios

and political forms, such as advertising and propaganda, charting the development of animation during war and peacetime, prosperity and depression. Find out how technology itself has had an influence, with the coming of Television, 3D and games.

A series of events and talks at the museum will complement the exhibition – full details are available on the Museum website, facebook or on the ANIMATE! flyer available from the Museum or local TICs. Look out for a series of workshops to show just how it’s done from modelling a ‘Shaun the Sheep’ to creating 2D animated films.  The exhibition opens at Dorset County Museum on Saturday 13th July and runs until 19th October.

For further information contact the Museum on 01305 262735 or check the website on www.dorsetcountymuseum.org

Dorset County Museum is grateful to the main sponsor, Pardoes Solicitors and to the other generous supporters who have enabled this exhibition to take place:

  • The Mansel-Pleydell & Cecil Trust

ANIMATE! Two Centuries Of Animation From Pencil To Pixel 13th July – 19th October 2013

Shaun the Sheep © Aardman Studios

Shaun the Sheep © Aardman Studios

For summer 2013 Dorset County Museum is mounting a major exhibition called Animate! which will cover the chronology and development of the art and technology of animation and its cultural impact.

Dorset County Museum is working in partnership with The Bill Douglas Centre at University of Exeter, Bournemouth University National Centre for Computer Animation, the British Film Institute and Aardman, as well as and the Ray and Diana Harryhausen Foundation. We are also delighted to have been able to work with Animated Exeter – the South West’s most exciting animation festival, inspiring the animators of the future.

The exhibition will look at the progression of animation from the early Victorian parlour toys, zoetropes, magic lanterns and flip books, through the work of Eadweard Muybridge, on into the golden age of animation in the early 20th century. Displays, installations and objects cover the rise of Walt Disney and the groundbreaking work of Halas and Bachelor, as well as the transition from silent to sound and from cinema to TV. An interactive exhibition suitable for all the family, Animate! will trace the use of animation in commercials, propaganda, pop videos and youth culture and the innovations of CGI, Pixar and recent computer games.

Alongside the Animate! exhibition there will also be an exciting programme of events including talks by Aardman animator Loyd Price. A full range of family activities will also be on offer, including a special half-day model-making workshop on 1st August with expert plasticine artists from the Aardman studios. To find out more about this fascinating series of activities see our events listings.

Dorset County Museum would like to thank the following sponsors for their generous support of the Animate! exhibition: