My mom is the creator of a phonic based reading curriculum called Fun with Phonograms. It uses songs, stories, pictures, and fun worksheets to teach children to read. She originally wanted us to create videos for each of her songs for the Phonogram Circus, which teaches single letter phonograms. The clay armatures on here were ideas for those videos. It was decided to wait and use stop motion animation for her multiple letter phonogram song and stories in the Phonogram Zoo.
The Phonogram Circus is almost complete. It was done using hand drawn characters by my mom and computer 2D animation by friend Bill Allen.
Since we had this break before making new characters my dad and I decided to get some training. My father has done some short films in the past for different projects he was involved in. I had never done any at all. So this summer we traveled across the country and stayed in New York state for two months to take a class. Our class was taught by the award winning short film maker Voltaire. We learned how to make some simple build up armatures. We learned some techniques for filming. I made two characters for an idea for an original short. They are the girl and the gargoyle you see pictured.
I’m looking forward to starting the Phonogram Zoo in the next year. We are doing this in our spare time which none of us really have.
We are also teaching the techniques we learned from Voltaire’s class to middle school kids in an afterschool stop motion class.
You can see some of my mom’s existing products on this website http://funwithphonograms.com/ .
On this page I’m going to post some of the characters we made for the Phonogram Circus. I’m also posting my characters from the class. I want to update our progress on the project as well. Click on the individual pictures to find out who they are and how they were made.