Heart String Marionette :: Production Focus

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Old 09 September 2012   #1
Heart String Marionette :: Production Focus

Hey there,

M Dot Strange talks to CGSociety about his new full-length animated feature, influenced by David Lynch, using CINEMA 4D, After Effects and a lot of time.


Click the image to read the article:



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For Editor and features writer, CGSociety; Global Artist Liaison, Ballistic Publishing. Freelance writer, media consultant & digital producer.
 
Old 09 September 2012   #2
M dot Strange here... Thanks for the feature Paul ^_^

If anyone has any questions about the film or indie cg filmmaking with Cinema 4d please feel free to ask and I'll answer the best I can.
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M dot Strange
Independent CG Filmmaker & Game Developer
M dot Strange dot CoM
 
Old 09 September 2012   #3
Thanks for popping in M Dot,

If anyone has questions and queries for the film maker, please post them and I'm sure he will be able to answer them.
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For Editor and features writer, CGSociety; Global Artist Liaison, Ballistic Publishing. Freelance writer, media consultant & digital producer.
 
Old 09 September 2012   #4
Hello Paul and Mr. Strange,

thx for the production focus, and congrats on the film Mr.Strange, even though its not my style of movie , i really admire your persistence to making a 2Hour Long movie.

I have one question regarding the dvd...i don't wanna start talking about your earnings specifically, but id like to know...has it paid off? I mean are you able to sell it yourself? What difficulties, if any, have you encountered?

I would imagine you'd hve to be working on it full time in order to be able to finish it in 2.5 Years no?
 
Old 09 September 2012   #5
Originally Posted by nildoe: Hello Paul and Mr. Strange,

thx for the production focus, and congrats on the film Mr.Strange, even though its not my style of movie , i really admire your persistence to making a 2Hour Long movie.

I have one question regarding the dvd...i don't wanna start talking about your earnings specifically, but id like to know...has it paid off? I mean are you able to sell it yourself? What difficulties, if any, have you encountered?

I would imagine you'd hve to be working on it full time in order to be able to finish it in 2.5 Years no?


I've been selling it myself through my site using the service DPD - So I've been selling an HD download of the film + the soundtrack for $5 and have sold 800 downloads so far in 3 months- The difficulties have been in marketing/advertising, driving traffic to the site/trailers etc- I do everything myself and I'm not very good at marketing/advertising so I can only hope word of mouth and articles like this will help me move more copies of the film.

The DVD's are not available yet but will be out in a few weeks. So finding a viable method of self distribution isn't a problem anymore- but getting eyeballs to your site still is for an animator shut-in like me ^_^
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M dot Strange
Independent CG Filmmaker & Game Developer
M dot Strange dot CoM
 
Old 09 September 2012   #6
Thanks for replying really appreciate it, have u considered sites like kickstarter? I mean from your profile, u are in the US, should be easier for you than for the rest of the world .
 
Old 09 September 2012   #7
Originally Posted by nildoe: Thanks for replying really appreciate it, have u considered sites like kickstarter? I mean from your profile, u are in the US, should be easier for you than for the rest of the world .


I'm going to launch a kickstarter campaign for my next film so I can hopefully cover all the costs up front- seems like the way to go these days as it has worked for many others.
__________________
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M dot Strange
Independent CG Filmmaker & Game Developer
M dot Strange dot CoM
 
Old 09 September 2012   #8
I saw this thread this a.m and will say I'm intrigued. Your images have great atmosphere, can you tell me about why you plan to light everything last on your next project. Surely you didn't have this option on 'Marionette' when cranking out full renders at night and animating by day ...

Also have you done any test screenings before its release to see if your edit or story works for your audience or have you relied on your "gut" as an uberector, to give your viewers what they think they want?

Can't wait to check out the film soon.
 
Old 09 September 2012   #9
Originally Posted by Narntson: can you tell me about why you plan to light everything last on your next project. Surely you didn't have this option on 'Marionette' when cranking out full renders at night and animating by day ...

Also have you done any test screenings before its release to see if your edit or story works for your audience or have you relied on your "gut" as an uberector, to give your viewers what they think they want?


The plan for the next project is to focus on the animation, acting and story before I get into the style/look- As I animate and finish animation on the shots I'm going to render them out using the hardware/openGL renderer which is near real time... once the whole film has been completed/edited/tweaked in this fashion then I'll go back and light the sets which will be xref's so I won't have to manually update each shot the set is in. I just want to get into a mode wherein I work on the look/atmosphere last- or I could even do it first again but not do any final renders until the full film has been through a few iterations using the preview render cut.

The plan was to do some test screenings to get some ideas of how this thing would be perceived but the film went a year or so over schedule... so I had sort of grown sick of it and wanted to move on to something new. So the people that saw it first were the test audience I guess. Yeah I just create films that I would want to see and hope that other people will be interested in them as well.

I hope you find the film interesting when you see it!
__________________
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M dot Strange
Independent CG Filmmaker & Game Developer
M dot Strange dot CoM
 
Old 09 September 2012   #10
Finally front page! Good for you M Dot.

To be able to produce 1 film per year. My question is how come others don't do it.
How are you able to do it? And do it often?

How do you get that speed?
 
Old 09 September 2012   #11
Originally Posted by AangtheAvatar:

To be able to produce 1 film per year. My question is how come others don't do it.
How are you able to do it? And do it often?

How do you get that speed?


Well I haven't gotten up to that speed yet ^ ^ My newest film took about 2 years of of nonstop work... But I plan to make my next film in 12-15 months! People aren't doing it because its a ridiculous amount of work to do in a short time and most people either dont have the time and resources or the skill to do it...

So ask me again in 2013 if I was able to complete an animated feature in a year and we'll see if it was possible for me ^_^
__________________
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M dot Strange
Independent CG Filmmaker & Game Developer
M dot Strange dot CoM
 
Old 09 September 2012   #12
Inspiring stuff! I am wondering, what workstation (s?) do you use for that amount of rendering?

Best, W.
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Current WIP: Photoreal Honda NSX... HERE
 
Old 09 September 2012   #13
Originally Posted by WChestnutt: Inspiring stuff! I am wondering, what workstation (s?) do you use for that amount of rendering?

Best, W.


I have a stock i7 920 workstation with 16gb ram that I work on and I have four older Q9300 2.5ghz quadcore machines w/8gb ram that I use as render nodes. When I finish working for the day I use the i7 as a render node as well.

With this setup I can usually render 3-6 shots overnight.... since my work quota is to animate 7 shots a day it keeps up pretty well.
__________________
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M dot Strange
Independent CG Filmmaker & Game Developer
M dot Strange dot CoM
 
Old 09 September 2012   #14
Very interesting work and article. Pulling off a feature length irrespective of genre and style is intriguing. I have to ask though, do you have a day job or you are full time on this? And if you are full time on this how do you earn your living?
 
Old 09 September 2012   #15
I salute your Dedication and Passion.....very motivating!!
 
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