Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Speed Maché: Fly on the Wallpaper

Set Maché layer 3: DONE! Looks a little like snow in Halfland.

It's getting to the *good stage* where the shapes are holding form more strongly. It's a pleasure to press the paper firmly into the sculptural texture for solid contact and strength when dry. I switched over to my big tub of wallpaper paste to use with the newspaper as the liquid starch made such thin material too delicate to press well down.

There are cat shelves high above Halfland where our 18 pounder, Jeremiah, took to sleeping all day last week. I was working on the creek when--BAM! he fell straight down onto the far left side of the set while still asleep! It was a particularly reinforced part and he was a bit stunned for a while. He limped that night from landing directly onto a front shoulder without knowing he was going to hit. Poor babe. He seems perfectly fine since then and has returned to his rigorous 23 hours a day of sleeping (not kidding), on lower ground.

Last week I spent a goodly amount of time creating the creek enclosure or lipped edges of the waterway that will hold the billowing material where it belongs to better approximate flowing water. I twisted newspaper into cords and taped it all along the 17.5' (5.334 meter) (!) streambed. Then I incorporated that contour into the set with additional brown bag paper maché.

We are nearly out-of-doors here (no window screens) and are visited by various kinds of small animal life; bumble bees, wasps, sparrows, crickets, etc. The other day this large black beetle fellow paid us a call. Dig those fancy feets! He kept climbing up to the top of a folding screen and falling off. I snapped this picture which only then revealed to me what he was trying to do... it caught his surprise wings as was trying to fly off! I haven't seen him again, I hope he made it.


  1. Lovely post, Shel. Can't wait for the set to be painted.

  2. Thanks, Hun, Oh yeah, it's going to look fantassssstic finished out! Hopefully like a real natural spot--in HALFLAND!

  3. So will this beetle inspire a Halfland critter?

  4. @Ryan HA! A very logical assumption--BUT NO!!! I've got to stop expanding this world at some point in order to get her done!

    If things go well, I might put one in a sea-squeal tho... maybe in high heels? Those feet!

  5. Poor kitty indeed! Must have had the shock of his life.

    I'm surprised you didn't grab Mr Beetle and stuff him full of watch parts ;)

  6. DUH!!!! I just remembered I DO have beetles in Halfland! Duh! I have two green shiny Knitting Beetles who are knitting little scarves out of wool yarn. Here's the photo... http://notesfromhalfland.blogspot.com/2006/04/layers-of-meaning.html

    So Ryan was right!

    @Rich I laughed out loud when you you were surprised I hadn't stuffed mr. beetle with watch parts! HA! (didn't think of it!) That's what got me to realize I already had beetles in the film because I thought that I wouldn't like to kill for it. That just changes the whole tone, if you know what I mean and I think that you do...

    The Knitting Beetles were purchased from insect suppliers that had already kilted them bugs.

    PS to gl, Jeremiah is fine. I'm actually grateful the set was there! That would have been far worse damage to him without it! Shudder.

    When he sleeps up there since then, I lay cushions under the area. :)

  7. you should make a movie about a woman who has a giant tree in her home.

  8. Now THAT'S an idea!


  9. I'm not sure as to the ettique of this, so I thought I should let you know (...clearly I'm a little new to blogging :) ) that I've added this blog, which I've been lurking around for quite a while, to my blogroll on my blog.
    If you don't want this etc please let me know.

    Your blog is inspiring and while I rarely have anything useful to comment I do like that I can share it with others.

  10. Hey Shelley-Shel! Love the new banner!!!! And the set is looking amazing.... wow, 17 freakin' feet long??!!?!?!? I wish my animation area was anywhere NEAR that size!!!!

  11. @Mikeeee Thanks, Man! I knew the size of things would raise an eyebrow. Space we gots.

    Yesterday whilst out I figured out how I want to do my backdrop/sky. Stay tuned...

    Love ya.

    @Meg Holy cow, Meg, I am honored to be added to your blogroll, thank you! I love that you've delurked! You are welcome here and feel free to comment anything at any time. It's tremendously encouraging to read cheers and ideas.


  12. Actually that's one the things about HalfLand that's really enjoyable, you take a whole-picture approach to the production. If it's not right for HalfLand then it's done another way. The films I've seen designed that way have always maintained something very special about them. It's a tangible 'magic' the audience can feel. It's particularly admirable in an Independent because of the time and effort it adds.

    That's alright Shelley, I laff'd out loud when I saw the cute leetle woolly legged interloper playing nudies next to the adjusted stream bed. Who is that?

  13. 1 foot for Square year on the film!!Ha!

    I remember when I first met you at the stop mo expo.....and you mentioned how long Halfland has been traveling with you.You have really lived with Halfland for a long time and pretty soon you might be liveing in Halfland too....ha!

    It really is looking great Herself! Truly bueatiful and inspireing!

    thanks for the tasty bit of INSPIRATION.


  14. Hello Shelley :) Thanks for your kind comments.. and wow yes I'd be glad for my adventures with paint to be featured in your film! It's coming along great and I love how you plan to do the water - I was wondering. Also those silhouettes look really fabulous :) What busy times!
    Happy weekend to you and all the studio menagerie!
    X Rima

  15. Hi Rich, Thank for that. I hope this will carry that quality you describe. Indeed.

    That nude goat woman you saw is the stand in for scale.

    For what she really looks like with her clothes on, here's a link to a newer sketch of the character; http://notesfromhalfland.blogspot.com/2007/11/some-frenzy.html

    Justin?! That was funny!!! Yes, I did first dream up Halfland in 1993, 15 years ago now, so that leaves me two years to finish it--if I want the coolness of the stream being equal to 1 foot per year! Hee.

    Thanks so much for stopping here in your high speed life! Your encouragement is powerful!

    And Rima, Thank you for taking those photos of your real life Halfland! Now I'll have the painter have a blanket and art supplies nearby. Perfect.

    I feel a little funny about it though, the making the plein air painter to include inspiration from your life, because the painter has always been a chicken! literally a chicken! and that does NOT fit for you at all.

    If I were to make a character of you, well, I think it would be more like Rana herself, the center of wisdom in the film.

  16. Holly Wow, what have you been up to!

    Looking incredible Shelley, that set is full of possibilities.

    I love the scale and it should photograph great.

    Love the new banner too, kickin' it with that hand sewn spider web vibe thing.

    Great progess!!

  17. Thanks so much, Mark! Working out the sky...

    How are you doing?


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