New Year’s Eve is upon us again, so it’s time to take a leaf out of last year’s blog post and take a look down Memory Lane. I’m particularly excited to write this year’s post, because despite the very high stress levels it brought with it, 2015 was a collection of very significant milestones for me. This is definitely one blog post I’ll want to read again in years to come.
Where do I even start…! So much happened this year that I’m going to have to do this in a short, calendar format and pop in links to the longer blogs I wrote about these events.
This month was mostly a post-Christmas mini-breakdown, as we began to go into the final months in the production of our short film. I’m sure I killed a few dozen trees with the amount of paper I used this month.
On the up side, at the end of the month I got to work at Digital Biscuit, live-tweeting the talks and workshops going on. I got to play with a bunch of Wacom products, absorb acting and cinematography advise, and watch with wide eyes as people explained processes like colour grading and new animation technologies. My favourite talk though was Andrew Kavanagh’s talk about their project Kiva Can Do!. I felt a personal connection to the cardboard box motif of this show. In fact, the reason why my online pseudonym is AtticCreationz stems from many of the same experiences as Kiva’s – doing crafts with and playing with cardboard boxes in the attic.
Mostly animating and writing here!
This month was all about my second trip to Dingle, and the biggest operation I ever undertook as the head of the BCFE Animation Society. I have a full set of blog posts about this weekend:
Part 1 / Part Two / Part Three / Afterwards / Dingle Map
I’m really really looking forward to Dingle 2016, as it’s set to be even bigger and better than last year. I have my festival pass at the ready already!
Oh gosh, this is when I started crying “the end is nigh” for college. My hand is cramping just thinking about all the writing and drawing. I’m pretty sure I finished up my dissertation (on the adaptation of How to Train Your Dragon from book to film, if you’re curious!) by the end of this month.
The best thing about this month was the news that I had been awarded under the SCC’s Niall Smyth Memorial Bursary, the funds from which would help me afford to go to Annecy International Animation Film Festival 2015. I wrote a full post about the Bursary here.
MAY & JUNE
This months have to be lumped together, as it was arguably the most important part of my 2015, the transitional phase, and one big whirlwind full of lasts and firsts. I have a full blog post about these two months here.
On the 11th of May, we handed in our film The Teacup for assessment, which in all technicality, was my last ever day of college. A surreal, emotional day. Read a full post about that here.
The day afterwards, I went to the launch of the first ever Animation Skillnet and Screen Training Ireland Animation and VFX Traineeship. It was such a great feeling to see a bunch of my friends be officially congratulated on their acceptance to the program. It also gave me great hope for all future students of animation and for the industry as a whole to see a program like this introduced. Much to my combined delight, awe and extreme embarrassment, I was introduced by my storyboarding sensei to the one and only Dean de Blois. So that was freakin’ awesome.
Then the rest of the month flew by, blow after blow – the first ever screening of our film at the end of year showcase, the first ever set of Teacup emblazoned DVDs made and ready to send to festivals, my last ever college portfolio presentation, and finally getting the results of my degree.
And let’s not forgot that we all voted YES to marriage equality, and Ireland became the first country in the world to introduce same-sex marriage by a vote of the people.
Next thing I knew, I had gotten a job at the studio I’d had my heart set on since my first year of studying animation, and after working my first week on my first full-time studio job, I was jetting off to the south of France to go to Annecy Film Festival! (Read more about that here.)
Song of the Sea was finally released in Ireland! (again, read here.) We also put up our film’s website at theteacupfilm.tumblr.com and put up a teaser trailer here.
As a belated birthday celebration, myself and my sister went to Kilkenny to see the Song of the Sea Exhibition (take a look at my photos from the trip here). Other things that happened this month included going to Dublin Comic Con for the first time this month, and I think I might have started playing D&D for the first time ever!
Our new series of Danger Mouse finally makes a smashing début on CBBC! Read more here, or honestly, just take a scroll through the Boulder twitter account!
**deep breath** OK, last few months, here we go…!
This month was pretty darn stressful, preparing for a bunch of upcoming November events and starting to write for Dublin2019 – read more here.
A counterbalance to the stress of the month was The Teacup’s festival run, which suddenly gained momentum with it’s screening at Warsaw Film Festival and it’s Honourable Mention win in the Best Irish Graduate Film category, which you can read about over on The Teacup blog.
Or, as I like to think of it, the runner up for craziest month of the year. Between Eirtakon, the VFX Summit, and Graduation (not to mention a bunch of the most amazing gigs I’ve been to in a while) I was simply exhausted by the end of the month. There’s a little break down on November here.
At the beginning of the month, my first Dublin2019 article
Thankfully, not too much happened for the rest of this month. This was mostly due to my internal struggle between rest/recuperation from the rest of the year, and between the animator’s fatal flaw – instantly wanting to fill free time with all the projects you’d put on the back burner! This mean more time for friends, family, reading, and sketching.
But of course, restless as I am, my social media and blog activity shot up as I began posting my work from the past two moths (including this blog post!) I’ve put up a little generated list of my best personal art posts of 2015 over on my Tumblr account, which you can see here.
And now we’re all caught up to today. Phew. That was a lot. Although I’m not big on giant New Years’ celebrations, I love that each year this day reminds me to be thankful, to look back fondly over the memories I’ve made and the things I have accomplished. Three cheers for 2015, a year I will cherish, and here’s to an amazing 2016!
PS – Stay tuned for Part 2, where I go through my favorite things of 2015!