Sunday, 31 October 2021

Why Animators Need Production Design

"Street Ratz", Production Design by Austin Hill
Animators, as everyone knows, are actors with a pencil - or a mouse. But as well as performance, animators need to think about design and composition. 

It is especially important when working on an animated scene to consider the environment the character is inhabiting.  

One of the most common mistakes made by student animators is to combine a realistic character (say, a dinosaur or dragon) with a cartoony environment. The character and the set come from different worlds, and they don't always work well together.

Friday, 29 October 2021

Last Call for Toonboom Harmony on 9 Nov

Last call for our 2D Animation evening class in Toonboom Harmony which returns to Escape Studios on Tuesday 9 November 2021.

Learn the fundamentals of 2D animation over 10 weeks, one evening a week using Toonboom Harmony, one of the leading software packages for the creation of 2D animation.

In recent years 2D animation has experienced a significant revival, both in the UK and overseas, as Studios such as Blue ZooAardman Animation, and Brown Bag Films adopt the software.

Thursday, 28 October 2021

Seeker Wins Best VFX at Portland Fest

"Seeker" Wins Best VFX at Portland Short Fest
Congratulations to Escapee Rassoul Edji, whose short film "Seeker" has won Best VFX at the Portland Film Festival. 

 "Seeker" is a short sci-fi film directed by Rassoul Edji and produced by Tosin Ogunleye, about a giant robot running amok in suburban England.  Seeker has won many festival awards. 

Wednesday, 27 October 2021

Jerich0 Wins Best Score at Halicarnassus Fest

Jerich0 wins Best Original Score at Halicarnassus 
Many congratulations to the makers of Jerich0, which has won Best Score at the Halicarnassus Film Festival.  

This award is the latest festival honour for BAFTA-shortlisted Jerich0; directed by Sarah Andrews, and produced by Matt Wight

The score was composed by Alexandra Harwood, who also contributed the music for "Minuet"

Tuesday, 26 October 2021

Concept Art is Back on 9 March 2022

"Jack" by Heather Langford
Concept Art is coming back to Escape Studios. Our evening class in Concept Art returns on Wednesday 9 March 2022
Concept Art is a part-time evening class, taught one night a week, running for ten weeks. Concept Art starts on Wednesday 9 March 2022, and runs for 10 weeks, from 7 until 10pm.  Classes take place one night per week.

Concept Art introduces students to the techniques and skills that go up to make a well-rounded concept artist, including 3D & 2D software.

We introduce our students to a wide variety of techniques, showing how to achieve excellent results with different approaches, gradually improving skills over the ten weeks of the course.  

Monday, 25 October 2021

MA in 3D Animation Starts 15 February 2022

Our MA (Master of Arts) in 3D Animation is back, with a new class starting on 15th February 2022.

The MA in animation will be taught both online and at our mid-town campus at 190 High Holborn in central London.

In recent years our MA animation students have created many award-winning film projects such as "Alma", "Flame", "Hat Shop""Mafia Mix-Up" and "Moon Rockz". Many have also gone on to enjoy successful careers in industry

If you're looking for an animation course that teaches you how to animate to a professional level, and also leads to a formal qualification in the field, then this could be the right course for you.

Sunday, 24 October 2021

UCAS Applications Now Open

UCAS - time to apply
It's that time of year - UCAS applications are open again.  If you are thinking of applying to Escape Studios to study the Art of 3D Animation, Games or Visual effects, it's time to consider your application through UCAS. 

The UCAS deadline for Escape Studios is 26 January 2022. We are now welcoming applications for the sixth intake of our integrated BA/MArt in Animation, Games and VFX - first launched in September 2016. But don't delay - apply before January if you can. 

Saturday, 23 October 2021

Francesco Nevi CFX Artist at Digital Domain

Francesco Nevi
Many congratulations to Escapee Francesco Nevi, who is working as a CFX (Creature FX) Artist at Digital Domain.

Francesco took our 12 week animation short course at Escape Studios and, after polishing his demo reel, successfully won a place on Framestore's LaunchPad Pro Creature FX course.

Creature FX animators are in short supply - this has been an area of skills shortage in the UK for some years.

Friday, 22 October 2021

Alma Wins Best No Budget Film at DSFF

"Alma" Best No Budget at DSFF
Congratulations to the makers of "Alma", which has won an award for "Best No Budget" Film at the Dreamer's Short Film Festival (DSFF).

Alma has won many festival awards.  

Wednesday, 20 October 2021

Last Call for Character Design on 8 Nov 2021

Learn with Mr Bean designer Steve Sole
Last call for our online Character Design Evening Class, which returns to Escape Studios on Monday 8 November 2021.
Character Design is an eight week evening class taught by industry veteran and Escape Studios' Head of Character Design Steve Sole, who will guide students through the principles of character design, building up to an industry brief.

Students will learn the basic principles of shape design; how to achieve contrasting characters, how work towards a client brief, and how to put together a "bible" of design information. 

Steve has worked on multiple industry projects including the "Mr Bean" series at Tiger Aspect productions, and has also worked for VFX studios such as Framestore.  

Amarok Wins "Chilling Award" at Scream Fest

Amarok wins "Chilling Achievement" Award at BFFF
Congratulations to the makers of "Amarok", which has won a "Chilling Achievement Award" at the BFFF 2nd Annual Scream Fest

Amarok was written and directed by Shenaaz Suliman and produced by Josiah Martin-Lofters.

Amarok is a trailer for a web series about a First Nations police detective in a remote town in Northern Canada; a curfew is imposed as a killer wolf hunts for prey.

Tuesday, 19 October 2021

Drawing Club is Back on Wednesday 20 Oct

Drawing Club is Back!  Sharpen your pencils - Escape Studios' Drawing Club returns weekly from Wednesday 20th October in Room 2.1 at 190 High Holborn from 16:45 until 17:45. 

The club is run by our amazing Studio Assistants - including Sarah Andrews, director of the award-winning short film Jerich0.  Sarah often lends her artistic skills to the banners and posters you see around campus and on newsletters. 

Drawing Club is free and open to everyone - even you haven’t picked up a pencil in years.  Drawing Club is a great opportunity to learn something new, get the rust off your pencils - or just get away from the computer screen.

Drawing remains a very useful skill in the animator's toolkit - for designs, storyboards, thumbnail sketches and scene planning. Animation often begins with a rough sketch.

Daria Zadecka Animator at MPC

Daria Zadecka
Many congratulations to Escapee Daria Zadecka who has just started work as an animator at MPC - one of the UK's leading animation and VFX production houses. 

Daria took our MA in 3D animation at Escape Studios, tutored by veteran animator Lee Caller 

Daria worked hard to polish her demo reel - the key to finding work in the rapidly expanding animation industry. 

Monday, 18 October 2021

Last Call for Storyboarding on 11 Nov 2021

Chess Adams teaching at Escape Studios
Last call for our evening class in Storyboarding with Francesca "Chess" Adams, series director and story board artist at Blue Zoo, which starts on Thursday 11 November 2021.

This evening class in storyboarding is scheduled to be taught online, and runs for ten weeks.

Chess brings her long experience of storyboarding and directing shows like Digby Dragon and The Go Jetters, reflecting the big increase in animated content being created in the UK.  

Draw Best Animation at Kenya Sports Film Fest

Draw wins Best Anim at KISFF 2021
Congratulations to the makers of the short film "Draw", which has won Best Animation at the Kenya International Sports Film Festival (KISFF).

This is the latest award for Drawa short animated film directed by Martin Kamminga and produced by Conway Dobbs, in which two kings fight for mastery of the chessboard. 

Sunday, 17 October 2021

Alma Best Short for Youth at Kinodiseea Fest

Alam Wins Short Film for Youth at Kinodiseea Fest
Congratulations to the makers of "Alma", which has won an award in the category of International Competition of Short Films for Youth (15-18 years) at the Kinodiseea International Children Film Festival.

"Alma", is the first fully motion capture CG short film created at Escape Studios; it was directed by Rola Hafez and produced by Emmanouil "Manos" Zervoudakis, and has won many festival awards.  

Saturday, 16 October 2021

Bird in Flight Tutorial with Marc Stevenson

We've added a new tutorial to our list of animal and creature tutorials at our Vimeo channel - how to animate a bird in flight. The tutorial shows students how first to animate one wing in motion - and then cut and paste the rest. The video was recorded by veteran animator and Escape Studios' tutor Marc Stevenson, and you can find it here

Friday, 15 October 2021

Amarok Hon Mention at Robinson Film Fest

Amarok Hon Mention for Best Trailer at RFA Fest
Congratulations to the makers of "Amarok", which has won an Honourable Mention in the category of "Best Trailer" at the Robinson Film Festival

Amarok was written and directed by Shenaaz Suliman, co-written by Simone Fraser, and produced by Josiah Martin-Lofters.

Amarok is a trailer for a web series about a First Nations police detective in a remote town in Northern Canada; a curfew is imposed as a killer wolf hunts for prey.

Thursday, 14 October 2021

Last Call for 3D Anim Evening Class 2 Nov 2021

Leopard animation by Daniel Amor
Last call for our 20 week part-time Animation evening class in 3D animation, which returns on Tuesday 2 November 2021.

This online class runs for 20 weeks on Tuesday and Thursday evenings, from 7-10pm, and is taught by veteran animator Matteo Sanna, currently working at WETA digital.

The course starts with animation fundamentals and builds up to complex actions and performances, and a professional level demo reel.

Austin Hill Studio Assistant at Escape Studios

Austin Hill
Congratulations to Escapee Austin Hill who has just joined us as a Studio Assistant at Escape Studios. 

Studio assistants help our students to progress their work, help to solve technical problems and also offer practical advice on animation techniques.

Studio assistants form an essential part of the feedback process at Escape Studios, part of what we call The Escape Method.

While at Escape Studios, Austin wrote, storyboarded and directed the award-winning short "Street Ratz", and also contributed boards and sound design to "Alma" and "Moon Rockz".

Wednesday, 13 October 2021

Rookies: Escape No 1 in UK for Games Design

Escape Studios Ranked No 1 in the UK
The Rookies, the international competition for aspiring digital artists, has ranked Escape Studios in the Top 10 globally for Games Design & Development - and the top-ranked school in the UK. 

The MArt in the Art of Video Games at Escape Studios has gone from strength to strength in recent years, with Escapees being recruited by top games companies both in the UK and overseas.

Team work is something we take very seriously at Escape Studios, one of the five pillars of "The Escape Method".

Animation is collaborative, and well-organised teamwork helps to prepare our students for the realities of life in the industry.

"Potguins" Best Micro Anim at Discover Awards

Potguins wins Best Micro Anim at Discover Fest
Congratulations to the makers of March of the Potguins, directed by Michael Vodden and produced by Daniel Brooks, which has won Best Micro Animation at the Discover Film Awards in London

March of the Potguins is about two penguin salt & pepper pots who embark on an epic journey across the kitchen counter top. 

Tuesday, 12 October 2021

Animal Lover Wins Best Micro Anim in Berlin

Best Micro Animation in Berlin
Many congratulations to the makers of the short film "Animal Lover", which has won "Best Micro Animation" at the Berlin Flash Film Festival

"Animal Lover" is a one-minute animated short written and directed by Anastasia Gurova, produced by Priya Shah, and edited by Daniel Brand-Sinyinza.  

This is the latest award for "Animal Lover", which also won "Best Animation" at the Flicks Film Festival in London.

Putting Animals on a Path with Marc Stevenson

We've uploaded a new path animation locomotion tutorial to our Vimeo channel.  The tutorial shows how to put animals and creatures on a path, and was recorded by veteran animator and Escape Studios' tutor Marc Stevenson.  Path animation is a great way to add believability and appeal to your creature animations.  Animals, unless trained, tend not to walk in straight lines. So, by learning to animate using paths, your creature locomotion will feel more fluid, natural and organic. You can find the tutorial here.

Monday, 11 October 2021

BAA 2022 Ident Challenge

BAA - British Animation Awards
The BAA Awards are back in 2022, celebrating the best of British Animation

This year the BAAs have give our students a unique challenge - the chance to animate a "sting/ident" for the Awards Ceremony at the BFI on 10 March 2022.

Students should create a sting/ident animation 4-25 seconds long. The final deadline is Wednesday 9 February 2022 at midnight.

Offcut Hon Mention Best VFX at London Fest

Offcut Hon. Mention for Best VFX at LIMFF
Many congratulations to the makers of "Offcut", which has won an Honourable Mention in the category of Best VFX at the LIMFF.

Offcut is a short film directed by Petroc Menuhin, produced by Tosin Ogunleye and Ethen Dent, which follows the adventures of a discarded scrap of wood who comes to life and finds meaning in music.   "Offcut" has won many festival awards.  

Sunday, 10 October 2021

How to Plan Animal & Creature Animation

Bear animation by Amanda Costa with live-action reference
Our undergraduate animators are working on their second animation module, AN5002, which involves the creation of a piece of animal or creature animation.

Animal and creature animation involves creating believable animation - usually based on live-action reference.

How should students plan animal and creature animation?  Start by watching the 10 minute video below.

Saturday, 9 October 2021

Box Bots Hon Mention Best VFX in Tokyo Fest

BoxBots wins Hon Mention for Best VFX in Tokyo
Many congratulations to the makers of "BoxBots", which has won an Honourable Mention in the category of Best VFX in Tokyo. 

Directed by Jordan Coles and Ross Green, and produced by Priya Shah"BoxBots" is about a contest between two toys who compete for the "World Plasticweight Championship".

Friday, 8 October 2021

Escape Open Day on Sat Oct 16 and 6 Nov 2021

Escape Studios is hosting an undergraduate open day on Saturday 16 October 2021, and again on Saturday 6 November 2021.

Escape Studios' Open Days are a chance to find out about our undergraduate degrees in Animation, The Art of Games and Visual Effects.  An Open Day is an opportunity for potential students to find out how they can follow in the footsteps of our award-winning alumni.

Adam & Eve Mk II Best Sci-Fi at Discover Film

Adam & Eve Mk II "Best SciFi" at Discover Film Fest
Many congratulations to Sebastian Kuder, director of "Adam & Eve Mk II", which has won Best Sci-Fi at the Discover Film Awards.

Adam & Eve Mk II, is a sci-fi re-telling of the Genesis story, directed by Escapee Sebastian Kuder, now working as a cinematographer at The Third Floor.  The short has won multiple festival awards.  

Thursday, 7 October 2021

Work Fitness Week 10-15 October

Work Fitness Week 10-15 October 2021
Work Fitness Week is returning to Escape Studios from 10-15 October. Join Escape Studios' Work Fitness Centre for a series of events aimed at helping all our Escapees into paid employment in their chosen field.  

Meet the team from Creative Assembly, Axis director Simone Giampaolo, and many other industry leaders.  Note that WFW is exclusively for our currently enrolled students. 

AN5001 Starts 1st November 2021

Module AN5001 Computer Animation Pro starts on Monday 1st November 2021.

This year, AN5001 is the second animation module that our undergraduate students encounter in their second year of studies, in which our students study the art and craft of character animation. 

In AN5001 our animation students tackle character actions, pantomime, acting, performance and dialogue, and enter the monthly 11 Second Club competition. 

Wednesday, 6 October 2021

Minuet Wins Hon Mention Best Original Score

Minuet wins Hon Mention for Best Score in Tokyo
Congratulations to the makers of Minuet, which has won an Honourable Mention for Best Original Score at the Tokyo Film Festival.

Minuet is a short film about a young girl preparing for a concert recital, directed by Aaron Hopwood and Harry Pearson, and produced by Maddison Gould.  The original score was composed by Alexandra Harwood.

Minuet has won many awards. 

Animate a Horse Rearing Using Live Action

Horse Rearing Tutorial with Live Action Reference
We've uploaded a new animation tutorial to our expanding Vimeo tutorial channel - how to animate a horse rearing up - using live action reference.

The purpose of the tutorial is to learn how to import live action reference footage into Maya and use it to create believable animal animation.

Tuesday, 5 October 2021

Jerich0 wins Best Super Short at UK Fest

Jerich0 wins Best Super Short at UK Film Fest
Many congratulations to the makers of Jerich0, which has won Best Super Short at the UK Monthly Film Festival. 

This award is the latest festival honour for Jerich0; directed by Sarah Andrews, produced by Matt Wight; original music by Alexandra Harwood

Monday, 4 October 2021

Simone Giampaolo Presents "Only a Child"

On Tuesday 12 October at 12.30pm we are hosting a webinar with animator, director and Escape Studios' tutor Simone Giampaolo about his new short film "Only a Child", which he describes as a "visual poem" created by over 20 animation directors.

"Only a Child" is a short film based on the original words spoken by the then 12 year-old Severn Cullis-Suzuki at the UN Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro in 1992, in which she made a poetic plea from a child's perspective for better environmental protection. 

Simone spent twelve months working with twenty studios to create the award winning film.  In this webinar, Simone will talk about how he made the film, and how he led an international team working remotely to celebrate the environmental youth movement.  

This event is open to our currently enrolled students only; there will be a Q&A to follow.

Sunday, 3 October 2021

"Slushy" Wins Best VFX at Argenteuil Fest

Congratulations to the creators of "Slushy", which has won Best VFX at the Argenteuil Film Festival. 

Directed by Callum Wylie and produced by Jess Hiles"Slushy" is a short animated film about two frozen soft drinks who get separated and have to find a way back to their fridge-freezer home.

Slushy has won multiple festival awards.

Saturday, 2 October 2021

Candle Wick Best Micro Film at Golden Nugget

Many congratulations to the directors of "Candle Wick", a short animated film created by our second-year animation students at Escape Studios, which has won "Best Micro Film" at the Golden Nugget Film Festival. 

"Candle Wickis a short story about a candle living inside the walls of an old house, who must venture outside to save his home.

"Candle Wick" was directed by Oliver Gallagher, co-directed by Shauna Ludgate, and produced by Emmanouil "Manos" Zervoudakis.  Art direction was by Tsvetelina Kumanova

Friday, 1 October 2021

Mafia Mix-Up Best Micro Short at Vesuvius

Mafia Mix-Up wins Best Micro Short at Vesuvius
Congratulations to the makers of "Mafia Mix-Up", the latest short film created by animation students at Escape Studios, which has won Best Micro Short at the Vesuvius Film Festival.

Mafia Mix-Up was written and directed by Jake Lee, and produced by Emmanouil "Manos" Zervoudakis

This is the first festival award for Mafia Mix-Up.