July 2017 Update: Paddleball Hole

Hello friends, I hope you are all getting the chance to spend Independence Day with your loved ones! (I will get to spend it with 30,000+ wizards, witches, and muggles at an amusement park.)

If you follow my blog and website regularly, some of you may be asking: Is Keith still alive? Does he still like comedies? Yes, and YES. However, I have some exciting projects happening all at once, one of which needs to be completed this month, so I am focusing every ounce of my 20-something energy to do just that. (Almost 24, btw. My birthday is on the 7th!) My comedy list isn’t going anywhere, but I’ve heard film festival deadlines can slip past if you’re not watching the calendar at all times.

This is a very important update, because it’s time to tell you about my short film! In my line-a-day journal for May 6, 2016, I wrote this: Working on a hand-drawn animated video called, ‘Paddleball Hole.’ It will be a combination of animation and real life. My inspiration for this style was movies such as Who Framed Roger Rabbit and Mary Poppins. I bought a light board for tracing drawings and decided to animate the film the old-fashioned way: using paper, pencils, and pens.

The story focuses on two animated characters that have an unexpected day at the beach.

Here is my process for Paddleball Hole:

  1. I draw the character on a piece of paper (usually about 30-60 drawings for one shot).
  2. I set up my camera on a tripod and take a picture of the piece of paper. This must be done at night so I can control the lighting; my apartment has lots of windows.
  3. I take the image into Photoshop and trim around it so I have a transparent .PNG file of the character.
  4. I import all the images into Final Cut Pro X and place them on top of prepped live action footage, which—as I’m sure you can imagine—requires perfectionistic fine-tuning to make the marriage of the two look believable.

I have already repeated the process above on 450 pieces of paper, and went to the store over the weekend to purchase my fourth sketchbook.

Stay tuned in the coming weeks to find out how you can get involved with Paddleball Hole. I have a folder full of drawings that need to find homes 🙂

In the meanwhile, enjoy taking a first look at some completed stills from the film!

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