Sojo @ Nottstopping Festival

Sojo invites you to dive into the imaginations of children through her world of animation. Learn some animation secrets and maybe even have a go yourself!

Big love to the whole of Notts for diving head first into this festival of awesomeness.

I mentioned a few organisations and people who are important to me in this film.

If you want to find out more about Small Steps Big Changes and  Open Water Education Network, here are their facebook pages.
You can also check out what Jayne Williams is up to at New Perspectives Theatre Company here.

Check out said awesomeness here:  
https://nottstoppingfestival.com/whats-on/

Donate to show some real love for the key workers in our community:
http://www.gofundme/nottstopping

Big ups to the organisations making this possible:
Creative Quarter, NottinghamConfetti Institute of Creative TechnologiesIt’s In NottinghamNotts TVHockley HustleInspire Arts and Culture

and Ben Welch for being some sort of festival ninja!

Sojo in LeftLion Magazine

I do love LeftLion Magazine so very much! Each issue is bursting with everything that needs shouting about in Nottingham.  They champion awesomeness and help artists like me reach new eyes and ears.  I was so very chuffed to be invited in to LL HQ, along with some of Nottingham’s finest illustrators to discuss a new, mammoth collaborative project!  Let me tell about it…

The Goose is Loose

sojo-animation-the-goose-is-loose.jpg

See the whole cartoon

For each issue of LL magazine a new version of ‘The Goose is Loose’ would be taken on by a different illustrator (or illustrator/writer team).

Our brief was this…

You know that goose on the goose fair round about? Well he’s gone missing. Now make a cartoon about it. Make sure the first frame is two people in a pub discussing the fact that he’s missing.

My Sojo version was mostly made on my iPhone 6, with a cracked screen, using an app called Adobe Sketch. It hit the streets of Nottingham in the September issue, which of course is the big run up to Goose Fair.

And now that the Goose is actually back, I thought it was the perfect time to share a little Sojo post all about it.

I hope you all enjoy it.

Kids Tell the Best Stories!

kids tell the best stories flyer.jpgI’m on a new mission.  I’m collecting stories.  Spontaneous stories told by children.

I am animating a few of them too!  Plus, once the animated series is out I will publish a beautiful book through Sojo Publishing Mouse, so you guys can read the stories every night!

Here is story number 1, written by a 3 year old called Morris.

“The Baby, the Sound and the Bird”

Hop Island @ The Curve: A crafty experience for the whole family.

hop island The Spark Arts have invited me along (wearing my ‘visual artist’ hat, rather than ‘animator’) to contribute to a Family Day at The Curve on Saturday 23rd May 10am-6pm.  There will be lots of wonderful workshops happening throughout the building so pop it in your diary! For those of you that know The Curve, you’ll be aware of what a gorgeous, BIG space it is and I will be taking over a lovely chunk of the mezzanine to fill with some seriously crafty, Sojo fun for the whole family to happen upon and enjoy. Let me tell you more… HOP ISLAND! Mr Dedalus and his son Icarus are trapped on an island.  Can you help to make the island a more exciting place? Families are invited to get seriously crafty and add something tricky onto the model Island for Mr. Dedalus and his son to encounter. You can create ANYTHING!  Perhaps a grumpy bear in a cave or a rickety bridge, a secret maze or a talking tree. What will you add to Hop Island? Take a snap of your crafty addition and it can be added to our online #HopIsland gallery for all to enjoy.  If you have any advice or special tips for Mr Dedalus and his son, to help them pass your obstacle, you can share it on our ‘Tips Board’ for all to see. Pop along at anytime throughout the day to join the fun. Suitable for all ages so bring the whole family and loads of imagination 🙂 This activity is loosely linked to ‘Hop’, a poetic physical dance theatre production for children aged 4+ and their families.  Performances of ‘Hop’ are on Sat 30 May and can be booked by clicking right here.

Lakeside Arts at Cantrell Primary School

DCIM100MEDIA Last week I was invited to run a Sojo Animation workshop alongside the Lakeside Arts learning team at Cantrell Primary School in Bulwell.

cantrell-logo

The kids in year five have been thinking about ‘persuasive arguments’ and have been using the book ‘The Great Kapok Tree’ to explore their ideas.  What a cracking idea! Hats off to the teacher that thought of this. In the book the animals try to persuade a man not to cut down their tree. thegreatkapoktree Rachel from the Lakeside Arts learning team transformed the class room into a rain-forest the evening prior to the workshops, ready for the children to discover in the morning. When I arrived at the school even the reception staff were full of smiles and excitement about how fabulous the room looked. I was in a less rainforesty (made up word alert!) room, but armed with a projector.  The children animated their rain forest animals in ONLY 2 FRAMES (that’s extra tricky) and then handed over their freshly snapped jpeg files to me, to take away and compile into one, quite frankly, BRILLIANT animation. Well guys…I promised you that your characters would come alive in seven days so here you are. 🙂

You should all feel extremely proud of yourselves.  I was blown away by your creativity!   DCIM100MEDIA DCIM100MEDIA

20/20 Eastmidlands Filmmakers Showcase: featuring 3 Sojo ‘Thunk of the Day’ Animations.

Thunk of the day pic

I am over the moon that my 3 little ‘Thunk of the Day’ animations have been selected for this! Here’s Thunk no.1, incase you know not what I speak of.

The concept is brilliantly simple… 20 short films from 20 filmmakers based in the East Midlands.  Thank you Beeston Film for another excuse to celebrate the huge pool of creative talent we are surrounded by.

21st March at 19:25

24 middle street, NG9 1FX Beeston, Nottingham, United Kingdom

The beautiful simplicity of a flip book.

Not long ago I was invited along to Lakeside Arts to get involved with some research into learning how to better design and make sensory theatre experiences for young audiences.

The research was conducted by University of Nottingham PhD student, Roma Patel. You can follow her work here.

Anyhow, this is all by the by, the point of this blog post is this…

On Friday I walked into university and my tutor, Sean Myatt, handed me a fabric covered, cube shaped box with a lovely card from Roma, thanking me for my help with the research.

And this lovely cube was packed full of the most gorgeous flip books. I couldn’t believe it! I hadn’t expected a pressie at all, but as far as gifts go, this was pretty perfect for a Sophie.

There is something very special about seeing the raw line art, those very simplified early thoughts of the designers and animators, and being able to hold those still sketches in your hands and with a nifty move of your thumb suddenly make those sketches come alive.

It’s fascinating!  My kids agree.  I think it’s time we make a flip book of our own.

 

Walt Disney’s Nine Old Men is a beautiful tribute to Walt Disney’s original animators and their matchless skill. Though the animators were mostly in their 30s and 40s, Disney jokingly called them his “Nine Old Men” in reference to a 1937 book of the same name. These animators are acknowledged as Disney Legends and unparalleled contributors to the history animation. Now their work is being celebrated in a collectible box set comprised of nine flip books, each featuring a beloved classic Disney scene.

So thanks Roma, you are very lovely.