A is for Amateur Animation

Ahhh! The letter A is such a high profile letter! I mean, it’s my letter. It’s ridiculous how much I adore that block letter A. And it’s the FIRST letter! The Alpha of the whole summer. I have lists upon lists of amazing activities for the first letter. So many of my favorite things start with this letter. Artichokes. Avocado. Apple Pie. Arizmendi. Ann Arbor. I mean, just look at my house:

A-Collage

I mean, really.

And there are two more that aren’t even pictured.

But back to the blog.

Okay, here’s the story of this year’s letter A activity:

A few months ago, I was lucky enough to participate in the Photoshop training course, Blogshop, here in San Francisco. Ever since then, I have become a Photoshop junkie. More specifically, I have gone cuckoo for the animated GIF. I do not exaggerate. I made my friends suffer through a photo session involving a five person rotation (with props) on my loveseat to create my first GIF. I documented a school project by creating a GIF for each of the groups (there were 22), and then placing them in a 3 by 7 grid (check out my page on the wiki if you’re a Friends schooler!) and it was…awesome. Potentially migraine-inducing, but awesome just the same. And yet, I still haven’t satisfied my ravenous hunger for animation.

Enter Alphabet Summer.

Back when Alphabet Summer was just a twinkle in my little Valencian eye, my “Save Tuesdays” crew in Spain used to craft it up HARD CORE. Once, we even rented a giant apartment in Denia and spent THE ENTIRE WEEKEND CRAFTING. It was wild. It was there, somewhere between a stop-motion animation session and a hair dyeing extravaganza, that my little blob friends Maxi and Carmel were born.

Occasionally a way to illustrate internal turmoil, and mostly just because they’re so fun to draw, they became my favorite two-dimensional amigos. Maxi is the nervous, anxious one; Carmel, his laid back and fun-loving contrast. They generally are only seen in my journal, but they eventually became the main characters in my second NaNoWriMo novel (2011’s thrilling Star-Crossed Glovers, about an adult co-ed softball league, among other equally as exciting things.) Who knew back in Valencia that Maxi had been the starting catcher on his college baseball team and was working a dead-end job in Ferndale, Michigan, playing Wednesday night softball with a group of misfits?

So, here you have it: A little bit of simple Photoshop magic + little blob creatures = Amateur (but amazing) Animation.

Everyone, this is Maxi, and this is Carmel. Maxi, Carmel, meet everybody.

The GIF plays on repeat, so if you miss something just watch again!

MaxiNCarmel1

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Post Navigation