So, things are winding down, and it’s feeling like the calm before the storm right now. The set is pretty much done — there needs to be some practical lighting wired up to dimmers, and some making room for magnets below the stage, but that’s about it! I can’t believe it.
Now the real fun and frustrations begin!
The very last thing to build is the cabbage, which I kept putting off thinking about, for some reason. There are going to be two cabbages in the film; one which is suspended from the set, floating in the middle of the stage… and one that gets cut up and made into a soup. They’re supposed to be the same cabbage, but they require different practicalities in the way they’re built.
I’m using my favourite mediums to make the leaves… two layers of rice paper, coated in clear acrylic gloss medium, with a layer of aluminum mesh sandwiched in between. The mesh is made for sculpting — it’s some sort of armature medium — but it’s also great for allowing things to be moldable for animation.
I started out with a balsa wood ball — these are layers of balsa wood sheets laminated together, then sawed and filed into a ball. Balsa wood works great for what I want to do, because it’s nice and light, but can still hold hardware such as screws and screw eyelets, which will allow it to be suspended within the set.
I had some inspirational postcards and photos strewn about, so as I was photographing the cabbage, I discovered an interesting backdrop…
The calligraphic cards are from two postcards I got at the Getty Museum years ago… they’re images from a book from the 16th century called Model Book of Calligraphy. The other photo is an old favourite — it’s a building in Toronto that used to be the Ontario Hydro Building. It’s really cool because it’s curved, and reflects the sky in a huge, distorted grid. I’ve taken many photos of that building!
Somehow this sums up well the visual themes of the film: there will be calligraphy, grids, and cabbage!
On to the next stage… animatics, planning, and trial animations.
(The Start Date: November 28th, 2008…)