Wednesday, 17 July 2013

Advice To Animation Students: Introduction

This is the first in an ongoing series of posts about the production process during final year at Falmouth University. It will cover everything from concept to completion in six stages; Development, Pre-Production, Pipeline Planning & Asset Management,  Production, Post-Production, and Distribution & Marketing. The focus for this first piece is on Development.

"The mark of successful organisation [institution] isn't whether or not it has problems, it's whether it has the same problem it had last year." - John Foster Dulles.

I have written this series post because it felt necessary to carry out a deeper analysis of issues on the production process to pass on what I have learnt to the year groups below as well as notes for me on the finer details of the project so I don't make the same mistakes as last year. It will be a mix of things I experienced working across several projects but some of it will be my opinion and bits of rambling which you should take a with a pinch of salt. It will sound quite negative as I am focussing on when went wrong more so than what we right. Thats what you're really interested in.
One thing that would have been very helpful at the end of second year is project evaluations from last years third years at the end of the year. A deep assessment of the projects from beginning to end. Having been approached by several second years asking for advice I wanted to collate it all into one place this would mean I can organise my thoughts as well have a place to send them to when they ask me. The course relies heavily on the "Eureka Effect". Waiting for great student project to come along to hang the marketing of the course on and hopefully get graduate jobs.

I know the lecturers tell students again and again, year after year, but I think it is best it comes from the students to the students. Future year groups should learn from the previous ones so they don't make the same mistake again. You will make your own mistakes but there are some mistakes that consecutive your year groups make and those are the ones we need to stamp out. 2nd years could read our production reports but this would be overkill, mostly self fulfilling exhalation. I'm not talking about glorifying successful/ finished films but I think other years groups will learn more from the films that failed or did not meet deadlines that from the ones that succeed but I guess we will find out.

We would need to develop a process that should be refined as each year group that comes through the course until we have success. Then to replicate that success for each consecutive year group.

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