If you have a nine- to 14-year-old who is fascinated by Claymation, then the Shenkman Arts Centre has the perfect summer camp.
The Director’s Cut: Claymation@24 Frames Per Second is an incredible week-long camp that will put your aspiring animator through their paces. The students learn everything about Claymation from developing a storyline to story boarding and how to use an actual screenplay program for their script.
“This is a challenging program,” says Brad Ferren, regional manager of The Director’s Cut, “and we make sure that the students understand each step of the process.”
With a background in photography and wilderness guiding, Ferren is experienced in leading groups and understands the hard yet fun work required from his years as a photographer. “There isn’t instant anything in Claymation,” says Ferren, “and probably the hardest thing for students to learn is patience.”
When he says students must learn patience, he isn’t kidding. For just one minute of film, there are an amazing 1,440 individual photos required and the process can be very intense, yet creates a huge feeling of accomplishment.
“We make sure we take breaks,” says Ferren. “Focusing on every fraction-of-an-inch movement is exhausting but when the students see the results, that’s very satisfying.”
The films the students work on are three to eight minutes long, and take the full week to complete. “Most of the students are completely surprised when I tell them how long some of the more popular Claymation films took to make,” he says.
“Coraline is an all-time favourite and it took over nine years to complete. Fantastic Mr. Fox took almost six years. It’s not to discourage them, but to let them know the realities of this kind of animation.”
Daunting as it may seem, students love the camp program. This year, Ferren has a former student working on his staff. “One of my junior staff members took the program, did really well and now I’ve hired them to help out.”
“It gets complicated,” he continues, “but when they’re finished the program, not only have they gained a lot of knowledge, they end up with an enormous sense of satisfaction watching their very own Claymation film.”
Find out more about The Director’s Cut: Claymation@24 Frames Per Second at www.shenkmanarts.ca/en/classes_camps_cours_camps/summer_ete_2017 . Learn more about The Director’s Cut at www.thedirectorscut.ca.
This story was produced by Ottawa Parenting Times Magazine on behalf of the Shenkman Arts Centre for commercial purposes.