Experiment with animating abstract shapes – Page 2

By 1981 I had made another 5 animated films as well as contributing to club films and in my spare time I managed to get my degree, pass the professional exams, serve my Articles of Clerkship and qualify as a Solicitor. Then I changed jobs and moved down from Merseyside to Luton. This may have been good for my legal career but it was not so good for making films. The trouble with my sort of film making is that I am always trying to find someone with the right piece of equipment, especially editing gear. I still don’t own a sound projector and I am only now finishing the sound track of something I filmed in 1981 just before I moved. In between I have made 3 further films, 2 involve the adventures of a cut-out figure called Arnold, and the other is experimental “Red and Blue and Green”.

This last film consists of a series of moving images, some abstract, some real, linked by a common theme of primary colours of light. Starting with a circle divided into 3 segments, red, blue and green, the segments squeeze between each other in a continuous cycle of 66 cels. The circle becomes a hexagon and then a spinning cube.

It is pointless to give a written description of all the images that follow. Those who have seen it may recall an image where 3 differently coloured chequer boarded planes cross each other in perspective at right angles and disappear into infinite space. This comprised a cycle of only 8 frames but each frame took 4 hours just to trace and paint.

At another point the screen breaks down into a mosaic of smaller and smaller parallelograms of red and blue and green, similar to the pattern of a TV screen. At the smallest size there are over 10,000 separately coloured segments in an area of cel 9 x 7 inches, is this a record? That one cel took a whole weekend to colour in.

George at work, note drying rack. The cels rest on cotton stretched between rungs of dowel.
4 frames from Candle.

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