Animations 1990






In 1990 I produced what was probably my best set of "HART BEAT" animations: six cartoon inserts for inclusion in the programmes "Marine Art", "Insects", "Stars", "Boxes", "Tails" and "Tall Things". Moving from three to six animations for the series meant I had to establish more of a production pipeline, with three rostrum filming days spread at two-week intervals. As a result, at one point I ended up concurrently drawing some animations whilst painting others and filming a third batch. The result was the most consistent set of inserts I had produced with some of the best utilization of the multi-pass facilities available on the (usually well behaved) computer-controlled rostrum cameras then in service in BBC Television Centre.

1990 also saw the introduction of a new character -- "Kate" -- who was very loosely based on a roller-skating waitress character featured in Martini TV adverts running around that time. Indeed, Kate was initially devised as wearing roller skates to make her easy to animate (rolling along being less drawing intensive than walking), though in the end Kate only skated once in ten TV appearances over three years. This point noted, Kate continued to wear rollerskate straps on her feet in every appearance, even when she didn't have any wheels!

Kate's main advantage over the "Fisherman Fred" character introduced in 1988 and 1989 was that she was fully three-dimensional (well as 3D as a cartoon character ever is!). In contast, Fisherman Fred was only ever seen looking either directly left or directly right throughout his nine TV appearances (a problem often overcome in building montage by cutting into and out of extreme close-ups of his hands, which were fully three dimensional).

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All images on this site are produced by and (c) Christopher Barnatt.




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