Wednesday, 24 December 2008



Everything needs to look like being done out of paper, cut with scissors, folded, thin, fragile, organic (asymmetric, not very sharp), everyone that is given a modelling task is also expected to finish lighting and texturing of that particular scene.

EVERYTHING THAT YOU CREATE HAS TO BE CLEARLY NAMED AND GROUPED, so anyone that takes the scene over can understand what is going on and so the light linking is easier.

What needs to be modelled:

BACKGROUNDS (check Version 1 of storyboard)

the hospital

the bed from the top (dying)
room, making cranes

the run

1. clocks
2. puddle from the top
3. puddle from the side
4. fish eye scene with bamboo bridge
5. red sun scene
6. the top view

the bomb

the sky

1. from the side
2. from down up


1. They need to look FLAT, like PAPER CUT-OUTS or 3D like ORIGAMI PAPER STRUCTURES


1. Run Clock trees (Ajdin)

2. Puddle top (Anja)

3. Puddle from side (Anja) eye scene with bamboo bridge (Mehmet)

5. Red Sun (Louis)

6. Run top (Dan)


1. Mourning scene (Heba)

2. Hospital window (Heba)

3.Hospital Room- making paper cranes (Heba)


Bomb Background (Ajdin)


1. Sky Top (Anja)


(very subtile, photorealistic with all the paper folds, organic)

Tuesday, 11 November 2008

Tasks for Simon

Dear Simon,

Please finish the 2nd version of the rough animatic until the end of this week (I will seat doen with you and help on Thursday, ok?)

This week please make sure you finish you essays as I would really like you to work on out final animatic until the end of teh term (specially in week 8 and 9).

Thanx, see you on Thursday!

Tasks for Heba

My dear Habibty,please do these:

-fix the project plan until the end of the week in MS Project (please don't forget to ask Jared to give you the CD with the programme- note: be careful how you save the documents- they have to be compatible with the version of the programe we use in college 00-03)


1.Japanese woodcuts
2.Origami (how to do the crane and all about the phillosophy and etc about it)
3.Japanese dolls (specially the paper ones )- go to wiki and from then on research to different websites and books
4. Japanese water colours ( what ink and colours they use, what are the rules, the history and the art theory- perspective, forms,...)
5. The COPYRIGHT for the story that happened about 50 years ago and the copyright for the name "Sadako Sasaki"
in our group blog you can find a link to a museum of Atomic Bomb victims (1st post- about Sadako's life) and please email them to ask if we can use that. Make personal contacts, it is always good for marketing of project and also to spread the idea.

This is all for this week:

Next week I would like you to take my background psd files and clean out the whites of the chosen layers as I would like to finish them until we do proper animatic which will take place in week 8 and 9. So basically until the end of the term you have loads to work on.

this week please make sure you finish your essays.

Monday, 10 November 2008

Wednesday, 5 November 2008


Japanese Traditional and Ceremonial Colors

General Color Meanings

Chrysanthemums are favorite flowers of Japanese. In general, they prefer flowers that drop their petals one by one, rather than fall off in one clump. That is why the rose is not popular, and even considered bad luck. Sakura (cherry blossoms), daisies, plum blossoms are greatly admired. Something with many petals can also be related to many years of life (long life) which is another "good fortune" wish.

Ideas for backgrounds enlightened in a very soft blue- reddish complementary contrast.

Red and White are auspicious colors (good luck). You will find the two colors used for many special occasions, such as weddings, and births. Since tassels are used to decorate things of celebration, red and white are the colors you will find (unless it is black and white, or all black for a funeral). There is an observance in Japan that you may find amusing - you are in a train station and see a couple. The man is in an all black, double-breasted suit, the woman in all black kimono. Both are carrying a shopping bags (yes, shopping bags!) containing gifts. Are they returning from a funeral or a wedding? The only way to tell is if the woman's obi is colorful, or solid black, and the man's tie is white or black. Colorful/white is for a wedding, black/black is for the funeral.

Blue and White
are also prominent colors in Japanese fabrics and dishware. Yukata is a blue and white cotton fabric used to make summer kimonos. I

The color list is referenced to Liza Dalby's book "Geisha", about her study of Japanese geisha life. The layering of colours for kimono and their surface decoration vary with the season and even the month. Apparently, as ceremonial kimono are very expensive, only geisha follow the tradition of changing colours for each month. This is one list of colours from a traditional school of Japanese etiquette. (Web master's note - Japanese culture is closely linked with the seasons, so each month is also represented by a nature reference.)

  • January Pine: sprout green and deep purple
  • February Redblossom plum: crimson and purple
  • March Peach: peach and khaki
  • April Cherry: white and burgundy
  • May Orange Flower: deadleaf yellow and purple
  • June Artemesia: sprout green and yellow
  • July Lily: red and deadleaf yellow
  • August Cicada wing: cedar bark and sky blue
  • September Aster: lavender and burgundy
  • October Bush Clover: rose and slate blue
  • November Maple: vermilion and grey-green
  • December Chrysanthemum: lavender and deep blue

Sadako died on 25th of October 1955, so ussage of the colour palette between those two nuances- rose and slate blue might be great idea to base the film on.

These colours appear the most frequently, along with black, (in Kimono). I was surprised over the amount of red ad rose nuances:

Ao (blue-green)
corresponds most closely to *turquoise-green*

Kurenai (scarlet-pink)
a bright, slightly yellow-toned pink produced from the benibana,*safflower*, an herbal
dye source. The closest thing to red in the fashion palette, since truer red, *AKE*
was primarily used to indicate rank.

Kobai (plum-pink)
a light red with a purple cast.

Suo (maroon)
another red, wandering in tone from purple to brown to orange. It is the name of the tree
(sappanwood) from which the dye comes.

Kuchiba (old-leaf tan)
(also the one I believe is closest to what she described as *dead-leaf yellow. The name means rotted leaves. If it were a bit brighter it would approachmustard.

Yamabuki (golden yellow)
a tree-shrub, the *Kerria japonica* with a roseate yellow blossom. A golden yellow like
that of the common freesia.

Murasaki (purple)
from the root of the gromwell, difficult to work with and restricted for the use of those of
high rank. A fragile colour, tended to fade. A range of purples included shades called
*fuji* (wisteria),*keshi murasaki* (a greyed mauve), *ebi* (red-violet), *koki* (deep violet
and *usuki* (pale violet).

Johannes Itten's colour theory (all about colour mixing, contrasts,...)

A color chart for Japanese colors :

Generalized Color Meanings

In repsonse to requests for generalized color symbolism, here is a brief list with credit to Jasc Software/PSP Newsletter:

  • Yellow - In the Far East, a sacred color; but it the West it can mean treachery.
  • Red - Passion; gets the blood flowing more intensely.
  • Orange - Represents knowledge and civilization.
  • Violet - Stately and royal
  • Blue - Cool, passive, and also symbolizes fidelity (as in true blue)
  • Green - Restful and fresh
  • White - Purity and truth
  • Black - Gloom, sorrow and depresssion.

However, there are also many believed meanings to precious and semiprecious gemstones, and using these approximated colors can also transcribe meanings.


The Anti-nuclear Song that Sadako Sang to Herself

August 19, 1955 / Hiroshima Red Cross HospitalOn August 19, a delegation from China came to visit the patients in the Hiroshima Red Cross Hospital. At their welcome reception, the song Genbaku-O-Yurusumaji was sung. Sadako learned it and later taught it to her roommate Kiyo.

"A song by Ishiji Asada sung by Pete Seeger on The Rainbow Quest album (available on Folkways from globalsound at the Smithsonian for download or on CD:"

Furusato no machi yakare
Miyori no hone umeshi yaketsuchi ni,

Ima wa shiroi hanasaku.
As yurusumaji genbaku o!
Mitabi yurusumaji genbaku o
Warera no machimi!

In the place where our old home village was

destroyed, we buried the charred bones.
Now the white flowers are blooming there.
Ah! we must never allow, we must absolutely
Forbid another atom bomb to come.

(Contributed by Janet Patterson)

I also like the feel of Nine Inch Nails Song "Hurt" and the way they presented it, unfortunately I can't embed it:

Music Video:HURT (by Nine Inch Nails)

Music Video Code provided by Video Code Zone

There are several types of traditional, Japanese music (hogaku). Some of the most important

ones are listed below:

H.I.S. Experience Japan Tours
Taiko Drumming Course & Asakusa Walk
A visit to the Drum Museum, taiko drumming at the Taiko Center and a guided walk around Asakusa.
  • Gagaku:
    Ancient court music from China and Korea. It is the oldest type of Japanese, traditional music.
  • Biwagaku:
    Music played with the instrument Biwa, a kind of guitar with four strings.
  • Nogaku:
    Music played during No performances. It basically consists of a chorus, the Hayashi flute, the Tsuzumi drum, and other instruments.
  • Sokyoku:
    Music played with the instrument Koto. Later also accompanied by Shamisen and Shakuhachi. The Koto is a zither with 13 strings.
  • Shakuhachi:
    Music played with the instrument Shakuhachi, a about 55 cm long flute. The name of the flute is its lenght expressed in the old Japanese length units.
  • Shamisenongaku:
    Music played with the instrument Shamisen, a kind of guitar with only three strings. Kabuki and Bunraku performances are accompanied by the shamisen.
  • Minyo:
    Japanese folk songs.

How to do cut out patterns in Maya

Basically we could make cut outs only in photoshop and then enlighten and animate them in After effects, but I would like to do so in Maya as I have more control over arranging them in a 3D composition and lighting them, also simple rigging and animating.

So there are few options:

First one is to create a texture with transparent parts achieved by alpha channels in Photoshop.

So we draw a texture (a picture), then we create alpha channels wich means that we have to colour everything that needs to be transparent with pitch black and everything that is not white (if we want partial transparency, we use greys).

Then when we create lights in Maya, we need to make sure, that they pass through the transparent parts of a plane, making it invisible. We do that with adjusting matte opacity in ...editor.

The second option is to actually model the pattern in Maya, using curves. The problem in Maya is not so much the modelling of silhouette of the cut out (using create polygon tool) as the cutting out the inside holes. This is very time consuming if we work with polygons as with them we have to actually connect all the edges and model the holes inside,
while with the curves we just project them onto the geometry and once done we can still easily remodel the hole (picture below):

The forth option is to do all these in After Effects, but the problem here is that llighting isnt so subtile and controllable3D representation isnt so acessible:

Monday, 27 October 2008


This is my final idea about backgrounds. I was thinking and researching for a long time to find out what exactly would I like and I came out with this idea of COMPOSITED PAPER CUT-OUT PLANES. I would only play with lights and shadows and different textures of papers to create the feel and look of space.

Here are some inspirational clues:

An amazing animation, all done with stop-frame paper designs:

Okami game, all made of 3D animated cutouts:

Im not quite sure either I want to do the backgrounds in photoshop and entirely animate them in AFX or do them in Maya and set the beatiful lighting and rig and animate them there... Im opened for suggestions, advice and ...practice as well!

Sunday, 26 October 2008


VERSION ONE starts with death and is all through one big flash back on what Sadako wanted to achieve.

VERSION TWO starts with flash back on the run, then continues with flash back of what happened to her when she was a baby and the whole thing is actually happening in a hospital, where she is dying. She turnes into a crane herself- in afterlife.



1.SHOT: INT. Hospital room, darkish atmosphere

The SASAKI FAMILY is mourning over the prematurely deceased daughter SADAKO.

Top view, the sounds of crying. Sadako’s body enlightened.

Camera slow PAN IN for one half.


1. SHOT: The title sequence “ 1000 cranes for peace“

Dark background (paper), white inscription. A red seal on the bottom.

Music starts.


2. SHOT: Close up to Sadako’s face.



3. SHOT: INT. “ Inside Her head”

Her eyes close. The blinding light from outside world disappears. The complete darkness for a while.

The sound of her heart beat (the heart beat monitor) is slowing down on the back the remote sound of the bomber plane coming closer.

Camera still.


1. SHOT: The same darkness from the last scene becomes more defined as an interior of a bomber plane.

Two live-action masculine HANDS in a shape of fist appear in the bottom of the screen and travel up.

The sound of bomber becomes louder.

Camera sill, when the hands reach the top edge of the screen- starts tracking.

2. SHOT: The city on the top of a darkness

City appears on the top of “darkness”. The fists collide with the city from underneath. They are joined by several others when penetrating through the floor, causing a big clash. Together they create the shape of atomic bomb. Particles travel down.

Sounds of atomic bomb destruction.

Camera PANS OUT ¾ in a slight bird perspective angle AND STILL.


The particles fall in a slow motion. From one of them 2 woman hands appear, carrying a CHILD. The child radiates. The hands come closer and closer, then stop.


Camera subtle PAN IN onto the hands.


1. SHOT INT. Hospital room

Close up- the hands carrying a child morph into the hands of a mourning girl- SADAKO. Hands slowly move down the face.


Close up to the face. Eyes closed first , then open and the tears are pouring down the cheeks.

On the back we can hear the whisper of Sadako's father talking to her doctor about her diagnose:


"I'm afraid your daughter has an A-bomb disease... She has a year at the most..."


"No, nooo, noooooooooo! Not my daughter! Not my dear Sadako!"



Close up to the eye. The eye closes and when it opens again we can see the reflection of a crane with a hand behind.

Silence. Crane wings flapping and a children playing in the distance.


SCENE 4, 5 “THE WINDOW, MORPHE AND THE MAKING OF THE CRANES” and “THE RUN AND MORPHE INTO THE CRANE” montage (alternating from slow to progressed action)


When waiting for her death sentence in a hospital, Sadako remembers the happy days when she loved to run. According to an old tradition, She gets an idea that making 1000 paper cranes will grant her a wish and in that final wish to run again and that all the children of the world will live in peace she becomes a crane herself, joining 999 others.



Sadako at the window, watching the cranes passing by. Children are playing outside, silence in the hospital. Sadako’s hand is falling down and the body becomes heavy of pain when the cranes pass.


Close up to the crane. It morphs into a paper crane and falls down into live action hands, which catch the crane and offer it to the camera.

The Friend reveals Sadako an old tradition:


“ If you make 1000 cranes you will be granted a wish”


Camera “dollys” through cranes that hang on the lines from the ceiling and reveals Sadako behind the table, making the paper cranes like obessed.

She is keep whispering to herself:


“I wish to run again, I wish to run again, I wish to run again …
and I …”


Close up to Sadako’s face, camera PANS OUT to the beginning shot of her on the death bed.

On the end of this shot her body morphs into the body in first shot of the last scene.

The whisper continues:


“ …and I will write peace on your wings and you will take it around the wold…”



Sadako is running through the landscape cranes are always following her. We can even see them in shape of shadows, water reflections.

Sound of rustling, crackling paper and nature.


Close up to Sadako’s hand swinging down as she is running.

Sound of heavy breathing.


Close up to the cranes wing going up.

Sound of “swusssshhhhh”.


Close up to Sadako’s hand raising up as she is running.

Heavy breathing.


Close up to the cranes wing going down.

Light Swusssshhhhh.


Sadako puts both arms up as she will jump over the puddle.


Her foot hits the puddle and pushes off. We see the reflection of cranes in the water.


Sadako takes flight. She thinks she is a crane herself.

The Silence, soft sound of the plane in the distance, louder and louder sound of heart beat.



Sadako “flays off” and morphs into the crane.

Camera ZOOMS OUT and we see that she isn’t the only crane. They pass by, leaving clear sky behind.



The inscription appears :

“ Today’s worldwide arsenal of atomic weapons is capable of repeating Hiroshima’ s destruction for 400.000 times!”

Wednesday, 22 October 2008


An inspiration for effects:


Manchester Orchestra "I can barely breathe" from clay lipsky on Vimeo.

I found in this exaple:

For reflectio in windows and light effects animated French Film Noir:


"PEACE" expressed in 2D ink, watercolour animation

"PAPER" as 3D paper cranes (done in Maya)- expresses the importance of a paper as material which helped to develop written word and human education, and whose importance is more and more underestimated in today's digital era- it alos expresses the idea of NATURE

"HANDS" done as live action footage composited over the animation- express the idea of beauty of human touch, tactility, emotional communication, hand crafts and arts

Interaction between the last two- BOND between NATURE and PEOPLE- environmental concern


Dave Mc Kean (Neil Gaiman)- interesting mixture of mixed media- ink drawing, photography and painted backgrounds

PSYOP- interesting storytelig (synthetic time, not traditional)
exchange of perspective angles (side, top, bottom angle)
distinctive visual style

Traditional and modern shadow puppetry- Nine Inch Nails music video for song "Hurt" with scrim (very thin layer of fabric in front of performers, film projected onto it) - expresses the idea of light = life, transparency= fragility of life, sound perfectly fits the visual material shown.Traditional Japanese art- ink, waterclour drawings and woodcuts
Litography- stone print- the prints are eep changing in a proces of printing, this is one of thechinques which allowes to transform photography into the beautiful crayon and watercolour effects.

Shadow puppetry also reminds me of my childhood, it was just something we liked to play

Traditional Japanese ink drawings, watercolours and woodcuts

and LITOGRAPHY- stone print- a great opportunity to transform photography into a beautiful crayon and water colour effects, besides the whole process of litographic printing seems like a sequence of animated frames as the pictures slightly differ from one to another print. This could be a great inspiration for backgrounds.