Saturday, September 19, 2009

100 Days: Caught Partially Dressed

I needed to see if all the finished cottage props and furnishings were on track for working together. They may look alright individually, but do they come together to create a warm inviting place to visit as a whole? I quickly placed things, insecurely and roughly, on the set to have a peek. Come on in...
(The overall tour)

It was very helpful to see the set, even partially dressed, like this. I found that the small hat was too different in scale (already removed). It will have to grow on an acorn. Making that prop change had me realize that all the hats for the Birds actually grow on the acorns!
(From the other side)
In this one I saw how needed grass and fallen leaves were inside the cottage to better blend the organic tree half with the man-made flooring. It's helping me design the cottage window treatments. I bought a bunch of great richly-colored maroon sheer cotton voile and nicely sized-pattern pink which I love but I still have to work out what goes where and how.
(At night)
This one describes some of the practical lighting and reveals Halfland's director in her power spot.


  1. Shelley, this all come toghether wonderfully!
    It's just breathtaking what you had archieved so far! I have watery eyes which are hungry for more!

  2. I am floored! Can I please be shrunk and move in when filming is over?

  3. Thank you, Jessica! I was surprised to see the work actually making sense when all put together. It works! Or I should say it will work! I'm so touched that you are touched! More to come.

    Hi Elva! I'm so glad you would like to live in Halfland! Me too! I think that's why I'm building it. It's a kind of peaceful creative sanctuary. I picture you visiting me like Krya visits Rana! You are always welcome here. Maybe you and Echo can cottage-sit when Rana and I go off to see the sage in the desert? hee.

  4. This is seriously just like waiting for Christmas Day when you know you're getting something really fantastic off your wish list! It's all so inspiring and wonderful :).

  5. Wow Shelley!!! Seeing it all together like this is incredible!!! WE finally get a real sense of all the work of the last few years... all these great props we've watched you make day after day, all brought together into a coherent whole!!!

    Hint... DP's (Directors of Photography... AKA Cinematographers) often use ND filters to tape on windows if the light coming through is too bright.

    Are you going to hook up a big dollhouse lighting setup for all these lanterns and candles? I suppose you could use real lanterns, the light would be pretty steady from frame to frame from them, but candles would burn down and melt into stubs in a few frames. Then again, in a magical land like Halfland, maybe candles do that?

  6. You'd better make up a dozen tiny guest beds for your set, I think we all want to shrink down and move in!
    It's actually looking pretty full and finished in the cottage - more riches than anyone will take in with a single viewing, it will be one to watch over and over, with new things to notice each time.

    After posting nothing new for a month, it's obvious that incredible pressure was building behind the scenes, and now it's absolutely exploding with new words and images daily!

    Was that an extremely small video camera you used to take us inside the set and look around? Or is the cottage interior quite big? I can't judge what size it is in the real world - when we're inside it, it just seems like the "right" size.

  7. Hi Amy! That comment goes in the most favorite of all time folders! Thank you so much for being excited It helps more than you can ever know! It really keeps me going!

    Thank you so much too, Mikee. For me, nothing is any good until you say so.

    Two important things! THIS CLIP WAS NOT NOT NOT NOT LIT IN ANY WAY! Gah! I know better how to that than this! Sheesh! I threw one of my friend David's giant LED panels up against the cottage and went to town. No thought no prep at all. I'm thinking of it as a SKETCH. I forgot to write that in the post!

    And two! D'uh! I'm going to have open flames on my set!? Me, the most neurotic safety freak this side of Safety boy?! c'mon! no possible way.

    Did you catch my posts on the LED practical light I've made for the set. (I can't locate the posts having tried for another reader who mentioned this too) Anyway, yes, the 6 chandeleir candles, the 2 sconce candles, the 2 large candles in metal holders, and the 8-10 paper lanterns in the Answer Tree, will all be actually lit on set with white balloon LED lights . I bought the stock that was left at a supply shop downtown LA. I'll add flame in After Effects. Etc. But the aura of light on the props and surrounding set will be real. The Hearth is a flame shaped bulb the plugs in. The lantern has a painted LED inside it's housing in that last clip, fyi.

  8. HI NICK! You got it! Places for everyone!

    Oh yes, you are so right, Nick. And I designed a new book too in there somewhere, etc.

    I'm using the video feature on a little Nikon Coolpix point and shoot. I hope to find a Lumix for the actual shoot, like Mike and Yaz and several other do. I believe you have one but prefer another for your amazing films?

    Thank you! Today I threw tiny teacups with pulled handles for possible use as growing teacups on the teacup rose bush! So fun!

    More posts soon!

    Thank you so much for coming here!

  9. You what - you actually THREW tiny teacups on a potter's wheel?? How tiny - thimble sized? a little bigger? From what I remember, throwing a bowl required getting one hand or finger inside and one outside as it spins, to pull the sides up... no way I could do that. This I gotta see!

    I don't have a Lumix, but Ron Cole is shooting stuff for a joint project with one that looks as good as you could wish for.
    I first got a Nikon D70. When it started flickering in the middle of shooting my film I got a Nikon D50. When that flickered as well I got a Canon 40d. The flicker appears to have been caused by an uneven power supply all along. So now I shoot with the Canon for the live view, or the D50 if I'm shooting frontlight-backlight and don't want to record the backlight frames with the framegrabber.
    Anyway, someone on the SMA board got a different DSLR-like camera which looks very promising, so there will probably be other options, should the Lumix become impossible to find - we just need to let someone buy one and test it for animation before we can be sure.

  10. Shelley, it is really great to see these videos online. All these little art pieces togeter living in their home... I like the night view the most. It is such a magical place anyone would want to be in.

    About Lumix, if you can not find a good one in USA, I can check out here too. When I was looking for mine, I remember seeing couple on the net. We bought the one I have now because the seller was in a place very closed to where we were and we were lucky that Lumix was in good condition. Let me know.

  11. HI Nick! Yep, I did! Someone gave Paul and I a gift certificate to a ceramics studio in town for two weeks! (So fun to see husband Paul making something out of clay for the first time in his life!)

    I went to glaze them for us yesterday (our last paid-for day) and threw about 24 tiny cups (w/ pulled handles) in various states OF BLOOMING!!! I even made a couple roses out of the same clay so that it will appear that some of the teacups are in turn turning into roses!

    That gift has taken the teacup roses prop into dimensions of WOW I could have never thought of on my own. It's the serendipity so often, isn't it!?

    Now you are wholly correct about how difficult it was to throw these on a wheel! Several cups collapsed during the spinning and therefore became "emerging flowers!" HA!

    Here's a clue as to how this was even possible...

    It's called "throwing off the hump" --I did NOT make that term up!

    What you do is center the large lump of clay on the wheel and the lump acts as the base from which you spin the tiny vessels. They would be way to small to make if one tried to use the wheel itself. Clay body (material) is too course to work in miniature but by throwing the shapes off of a mud mountain it is very easy!

    Some I wanted so small that my finger would fit inside so I used a wooden sculpting tool. I got into making these. I really wished I'd brought my camera! I will when I go back to glaze them for firing!

    Thanks, Yazzie! I may end up putting you on Lumix Watch 2009, sweet of you to offer! To tell the truth I've only poked in on eBay a couple of times. When the set is finished, I'll get serious about finding my LUMIX!

    Nick, interesting you say there may be add'l options too at some point. Although Mike has educated me on the Lumix's virtues to the point where I'm in love with the idea of it.

  12. UPDATE: I just found, checked with Mike about, and ordered a LUMIX!!! I'm THRILLED!!! w00t! It's a magical machine.

    The only thing they can ever make better for stop motion is a Lumix, with its Leica lens with a live digital feed output and a roomy computer built-in, that also builds your puppets and shoots and edits the film to your exact vision by itself.

    In the meantime, I'm happy to have one of these old-fashioned models on its way to Halfland.


  13. Shelley!!!! Wowwwww.. I am so happy!!! Welcome to LUMIX Club! You are so lucky, you found a good one and checked with Mike. When does it coming?? I wish you many many many great shots with your Lumix in Halfland!

  14. Yay, Yaz! The seller seems really nice and is excited I am so happy to get his camera. He said he plans to ship it out Friday so it should come next week!

    Now I need to get the converter, the adapter, the remote, the memory card, etc.

    Then a small power conditioner, lighting rigging, several lights, etc.

    I might have to invest in a new Mac too in the coming months. I have a second hand older model that has been struggling with overheating just surfing and having graphics card malfunctions.

    If I do get a new more current model, I'll be able to use a good online backup service and have lots of free processing power to handle the actual Halfland images.

    This could really actually happen?!


  15. YES! This could really actually happen! One by one, one after the other.. Hafland is becoming alive.

  16. OK! I'm glad you're here with me.

  17. meanwhile my 4 or 5 studio spaces are slowly getting organized.
    (^ who knows. maybe by 2014.

    (^ makes just making contacts via virtual worlds that much more inspirational.

    (^> prosser.

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