4 May 2011

Stop motion: City of Books.

Stop motion (also called 'stop action' or 'frame-by-frame') is an animation technique where you create individual scenes, take a photograph of each scene and then play the photos as a sequence, creating the illusion of movement.

In previous years, we have made a few stop-motion films with our students, using clay figures they'd modelled. It was great fun - and a lot of work. Every movement and every position has to be thought out, set up and photographed.

To give you an idea of what this technique can accomplish when wielded by professionals, I want to share one of my favourite stop-motion animations: 'City of Books'.

'City of Books' is a delightful little film that was produced by Apt Studio and Asylum Films in 2008, to celebrate 4th Estate Publishers' 25th anniversary. It took them 3 weeks to make, and I'm not surprised!

What a great commercial this video would make for libraries worldwide, and what a great technique to use for a creative book trailer!

If you want to see how the animation was made, check out these timelapse videos.
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  1. That's such an awesome video! All those moving cut-outs! :-)

  2. It works if you think of your scenes this way too. Snap shots captured and strung together.

  3. Sorry, when I wrote scenes. I meant scenes in the books we write.

  4. @Misha: yes, fabulous, aren't they :-)

    @V: I thought so too. :-)

    @Angela: That makes sense: the process of creating is pretty similar. Thanks! :-)

  5. That was really fun. I can't believe they made the video in three weeks. It's so detailed. When you consider each movement is a single screen shot, wow.

    Nice find. Thanks for sharing!

  6. @L.G.: the detail is amazing. I also like their choice of books in the background and the scenery, to reflect the different atmospheres. Really well done. :-)

  7. Wow - how cool is that? Thanks for sharing.

  8. Okay that was seriously cool. Wow.

  9. K.C., if you stop by my blog tomorrow, you'll find an award there for you.

  10. Wow. That is amazing, and I agree about it making a great book trailer! Thank you for sharing it with us!

    Ellie Garratt

  11. @Karen: thank you so much! I'll go pick it up straightaway! :-)

    @Ellie: you're very welcome. I could see it work well for certain genres: mystery, spy thriller, and even chick-lit, using magazines instead of books.


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