It was the summer I got fleas. The summer of small sticky alleys, tooting of distant big ships, loud street sellers and piss stink stronger than the morning sun.
It was the summer of my first kiss.
This timelapse video gives you a close look at behind the scenes of one of my favorite parts in the teaser, where Kara meets her flea-ridden friend on the rooftops of Yesilcam. It is a continuous camera move where the animation began on the rooftops and ended on the floor, through the window of a tiny kiosk. The sets were taken out and light matched mid-shot to make it all happen.
Animated by the wonderful Dobrin Yanev, this shot took us about 3 weeks to complete, not counting the set building and prep time.
The road from the inspirational drawings to designs to armatures and puppet making on Kara and Mr. Fleas have been long and winding but here are two pieces of test animation that makes it all worth while. It is very rewarding to see how beautifully the puppets move in the hands of our great animators. Watch the Kara test again and see if you can catch the subtle breath she takes! And Mr. Fleas, the cat with the longest tail in the world, knows how to show it off…
Click the images below to watch the test animation videos.
It’s about 1 am in Hamburg, Germany and I stand in the studio as I write this post. It’s been non-stop for our small but fine team for the last few weeks and there is no end in sight just yet…so I have to squeeze in a quick update between lighting and camera and s3d set ups, timing and animation briefings.
Currently we’re on our third – and most complicated – set up. We’ve built a part of the historical Yesilcam Street in Istanbul – complete with Emek Sinemasi (movie theater facing closure despite protests), done our first pre-lighting and camera set up, soon to start blocking. But more on that set later…For now, I’ll leave you with this time-lapse summary of the Marionette Theater set up / take down. My favorite part is seeing the animation…The video makes the humongous work we left behind look too easy – I wish real time was as fast and effortless as time-lapse makes it seem!
It’s been a hell of a couple of weeks, but finally the Milo is standing in the studio – big thank you to Knut Lange -, our first set Marionette Theater has been set up and our wonderful animator Juan Soto is creating some magic. The first shot of the teaser is nearly done and it feels good to finally see things come to life after months and months of hard work. And the result is so astoundingly similar to the beautiful inspirational designs of Anne (Hofmann that is…) It is all thanks to an amazingly talented and dedicated team, who keep adding a little bit of themselves to Kara along the way. Seeing her move with a life of her own on that stage brought tears to my eyes.
But enough sobbing…We have some real nice making of videos coming soon, so keep an eye out for that. And the updates might be a bit more seldom and short these days, though we have more than ever to share with you, but first things first…we have a teaser to finish and a very tight deadline. So I’ll get back to work and leave you guys with these two pictures from our Waterloo Studios in Hamburg.