Professional Skills

2 Final Shots

Establishing shot from Oly Walters on Vimeo.

This is the first of our shots for our final film, This is our first establishing shot for our film showcasing the environment. We used Vray to create the lines and drawn effect. We also had to composite in the water ad we could not use Vray to render the water.

They slept together from Oly Walters on Vimeo.

This is the second of our shots showcasing the establishing shot for our two main characters, we had a little problem rendering out the cat and rat in Vray and the animation gets a little messed up but its nothing we cant fix later on, we hope to get over our rendering issue soon.

We will continue to use Drop box for our shot storage but we did encounter some referencing problems that I believe to now be resolved.  Drop box has been a life saver for us and such a useful tool for us to get files up and running quickly.

Film Marketing
The group and I are planning to market our film for young children. Age ranging from 7-14 but we can also market this film to anyone who has an interest in Chinese folk tales.

Our films simple designs make it ideal for kids and its story can appeal to an even wider audience. We feel the story of our film can be educational to its audience telling the story of how the cat is not in the Chinese zodiac.

The style we have chosen is a toon/cel shading which makes the film look simple yet colourful. This was influenced from Okami which was our main source of inspiration

Sarah Strickland has designed many posters for us, she has finished one and is currently working her way through the others designs she has, we will use these to advertise our film an for the degree show, we are also going to use the remaining products we have from E&E to hand  out at the degree show so that was a little bonus for us.

James waters has produced a film website for us where we will show case the film and its artwork when it is done. The website can be found at we also have an email address for the film these will be used to contacts and industry and so that we can all view any emails sent our way regarding the film.

On the website is a gallery of work, information regarding the film and a short turntable animation that me and James Tomkins made. I posed the characters and placed the camera and he rendered it out.

Google Calendar/Scheduling
We created a group email for our film. This is used for use to keep schedule of the project using google calendar and used for companies when we want contacting by industry.

Here is a shot of our group calendar, we clearly have group meetings every Tuesday to address problems and decide where to go next with the film. These meetings were used to sort out where we needed to address with the film. We then put main things to address such as animation and modelling for everyone to see. We also added these to our own Google calendars.

Individual Marketing
I have a number of things that give me a small online presence that I will need to use to make myself more well known.

I have a main blog that I will use as my main website, I have neither the time nor the skills to make a fancy website so I use Blogger. This site is more than capable to post information up about myself and my work and many other people and companies use Blogger. This site also has some level of customisation so I can make the website more personal. Using Blogger has its advantages as it links to my Google account so it helps me keep all my information in one place.

Along with my Blogger on my Google account I have a number of other things linked. I have a multitude of sites I am linked to and a million accounts to log onto to check daily.

I have a YouTube account where I can post up all the videos I can make, My first show reel is uploaded on to here also. I may have to also consider opening a Vimeo account as that is also a highly popular video site now

Google+ account, this is relatively new I thought about expanding my Google account for sometime and I finally upgraded to Google+, There is really much on this site as many people still use Facebook but I felt that I should at least get a foot hold on the site.

I recently opened a LinkedIn account, I have been meaning to open one for ages so I am currently building  connections on the site. I need to build up the information it there to expand my profile to make it look more professional and then I can use it to network with colleagues and industry.

I have a twitter account, I don't really use it much but I have one if I ever need one in the future, I mainly use it to keep myself updated with companies and people I am interested in but I very rarely tweet anything, perhaps now that I have a smart phone I may be more inclined to use it more.

I have a DeviantART account, this is a site for artists to display and sell their work. I joined the site to showcase of art I had done and to get critiques so that I could make my work better and to continue improving. My profile can be seen at

If you notice throughout all my profiles I have been using (or trying to use) the same "name" LiW6. This is my brand. I use it for every account I own. Its my way of identifying myself online and by using the same brand on all my profiles people can easily relate my profiles and see that each of them belong to one person. I want to use LiW6 for my work as it is a rather unusual name and is quite personal to me.

I am currently in the process of designing my business cards so that I can hand them out at the degree show. I am still unable to settle on a design I like but thankfully I have a few months yet to truly finalise and idea.

I'm considering using the image I have as the background for my blog, I'm still unsure as to whether I should do more designs or go for something more simple, I have a while yet to decide but I should think about getting them done soon.

What I did for the film
For this project I mainly wanted to animate and I've only really just had the chance to fulfil that role, So in the mean time I had been doing character concepts and animatics, as well as testing the rigs for defaults. I animated our second shot also, and I am now getting on with animating more important and difficult scenes.

Its a shame that being an animator means that I have to wait before I can truly do my job. I am glad that now we have finally started animating I can really crack on with it. We will be dividing up the shots between us all soon.

So while I was waiting for my time to animate I did the character sheets for the Cat and Rat then I ended up re doing James version of the Ox. I believe that now I will also be finishing off the emperors sheet as well. I also did the first animatics for the film, I have come to the conclusion that animatics are not my forte, while I didn't do a terrible animatic Oly and Sarah will be refining my animatic with the new sounds we got Jeff to voice for us.

Contacting Industry
Our group have sent a numerous amount of emails to many different companies. I personally am going to try to aim more for gaming companies as they are my passion and it would be amazing to meet some people from them. I have managed to contact Ninja Theory and I am awaiting a reply, I'm looking into other companies in the UK such as Rockstar but I've been unable to find a contact email on their website so I am looking else where for a contact email.

I really hope to get a reply from Ninja Theory and I will keep watching my emails hoping for a reply. I know it might be a bit too much to expect them to be available for the degree show as they do have a very big game in the works which is due out later this year but at the very least I would like a reply.

Individual Contract

Individual contracts
BA Hons Animation


Student name
Lily Blacknell
Primary Role
Secondary Role
Character/Concept Design
Project Title
Cat and Rat
Learning Log Link

I promise to attend all pre arranged group meetings and workshops to get feedback from my team and tutors.

I promise to immediately respond to all requests from my team regarding updates and changes to the schedule.

 If for any reason I am unable to continue my work or have personal issues, which delays my work I will inform my tutor and the team producer.

All the above will be documented in the journal/blog

Action Plan (Project1)
Planned progress
Amend character designs ready for modelling. Draw up new character sheets for Cat, Rat and Ox
Re-organise shots, amend animatic.
Test Rat rig. Do some test animations for Oly and return the Rat rig if any problems occur
Decide on best method for toon shading. Render Layers – Ramp shader.
Once characters are rigged and working begin test animations whilst waiting for set to be built and shots to be chosen
nCloth tests for Emperor’s robes.
Decide as a group who is animating which scene. Make sure Rigs are working properly.
Begin and start to animate.
Help with cameras and shots. Shots may need to be changed as well as some animation.
Carry on with animations. Build the credit sequence and title sequence. Get properly recorded Narration done.
Clean up animations. Test them in playblasts. Amend if necessary.
Make sure everything is ready to be rendered, whilst continuing any outstanding animation.
Make final adjustments to scenes if problems occur.
Render shots using render layers.
Composite shots in premier and After Effects.
Add subtitles to film.
Make any final adjustments. Make sure all clips are rendered out correctly and to broadcast quality.
May 25th
Hand in

Tutor’s feedback/amendments

Student Signature


I have tried to stick to this as best I could but we have encountered many rigging problems and files crashing on laptops, they have all been resolved now but that does mean we are slightly behind what we planned on the contract but we can make up the time in the Easter holidays.

I didn't realise how tough film making would be, its very difficult working as a team, trying not to hurt anyone's feelings and still getting work done. We've had our ups and our downs in the group but we've managed to pull through. We are on the home stretch now, go team!

Having to do all the work from scratch has put a strain on the group, what with files crashing on different machines and things not loading properly or doing what they should, we've powered on through but it really does give you an insight to everything that can and will go wrong when trying to produce something.

I realised how difficult it is to contact industry too, its all well and fine finding an email address and sending an email but actually getting a reply is proving to be difficult, its slightly disheartening when other people have gotten replies from the people they contacted but you are still waiting on yours wondering if you sent it to the right address or if you wrote the email well enough to even get a response.

And finally I've been shown how hard it is to create and online presence and market yourself to build a name and reputation. Its going to take a lot of hard work and time to get noticed, but everyone starts somewhere and I just have too keep adding to my existing profiles and hopefully make a name for myself through my work.