Robin Redbreast

Robin's are one of my favourite birds so I just had to draw one.  I had to focus to make sure the impression of feathers came across with my brush strokes.

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'Home' 2015

I recently watched the film 'Home' by DreamWorks Animation studio.  It was released in 2015 but wasn't a film that had ever really appealed to me enough to actually sit down and watch it.  The only thing I had remembered from the trailers was that Sheldon (Jim Parsons from TV show 'Big Bang Theory') was in it.  It recently appeared on BBC iPlayer on a gloomy weekend afternoon so I figured why not!

 (DreamWorks Home 2015)

(DreamWorks Home 2015)

It's a good looking film that for the most part managed to keep my attention.  It's very clearly been made for young children with its bright colours and simple humour.  If you'll willing to embrace this then it's a fun little film that won't make you think but will make you smile.

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The Mad Doctor

Here's a little YouTube clip from the Mickey Mouse animation titled 'The Mad Doctor'.  The section in particular that I like is when he's walking down the narrow tunnel.

Created in 1933 it shows a brilliant understanding of depth by the animator.  It's been done so well that you really get the feeling of a moving, flowing camera.  It's similar to a manoeuvre you'd see from a live action film.

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I'm hoping to be determined with my art, getting the highest quality I can for my pictures.  So here's a portrait of "Deku" Midoriya Izuku from 'My Hero Academia'.

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Start a Business at University

Our own Daniel Waterman has parted some of his wisdom and written about the companies early days.  Find his section in this Telegraph newspaper article:

He speaks about his experience setting up a company whilst still at university and the sacrifices that need to be made.  Unfortunately it's not all glitz and glam but if it's something you believe in and you're willing to put the effort in it can all pay off!

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Lights, camera, animation!


Staffordshire-based animation company, Carse and Waterman Productions, has today
announced its involvement in an ambitious, new animation project which will see the
company work with the producers of hit films “Saving Santa” and “Nativity!” to produce a
festive animation titled ‘The Claus Supremacy’.

The story itself places its audience in a world of alternative history. This forms the backdrop
for an entertaining story of discovery where we, as an audience, learn how the Santa Claus
that we’ve all grown to know and love can deliver all of those presents to millions of children
across the world.

Development has now started on the family feature film and the team at Carse and Waterman
are now busy modelling, rigging and animating key characters.

Company director Daniel Waterman, says that the project marks an exciting chapter of
‘growth and reflection’ for the business. ‘We (Daniel Waterman and Gary Carse) launched
the business after our first year at Staffordshire University in 2009 and our first project
together was a music video for The Prodigy.

‘Since then, we’ve worked tirelessly to build a diverse, imaginative team who have gone on
to work on a range of notable projects, working with industry giants such as AT&T and
United Nations.

‘Nine years since the launch of Carse and Waterman we’re very proud to remain in Stoke-on-
Trent and we’re keen to share the message that digital creativity and youth aspiration are very much alive within this city.’

The animation will be produced by film producer Richard Turner and Terry Stone. Turner
co-produced the highly acclaimed festive hit ‘Nativity’ whilst Stone who has carved an
impressive career on both sides of the camera over the past 14 years produced ‘Saving

Describing the animation as a ‘film for the whole family’, Turner explains his reasoning for
choosing to work with a Staffordshire-based company on the project.

‘Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire have a fantastic range of digital and creative industries,
fuelled by outstanding local talent and a vibrant, diverse business environment.

‘We’ve already received a huge amount of interest in the film and we look forward to
working with Carse and Waterman throughout this project’.

The feature film is now in pre-production stage with the objective to launch in cinemas in
December 2019.


We've all eaten far too many Easter eggs but at least we had an enjoyable Easter holiday.  We're back fresh in the office ready to get on with all our animation projects.


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Back in Time

Artists at Jordanstone College of Art & Design in Dundee, Scotland have used old photographs of an abandoned railway tunnel to bring it back to life.  By taking photographs from city archives experts then placed the photographs into 3D animation software.  Some components such as a train and horse needed to be created in 3D from scratch in order to be able to make them move.

The animation they created gives a real glimpse into what life would have been like working at the Dundee Law railway in the mid 1800's.

Check out the animation here.

I think it's a really cool and unique use of 3D animation.

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Studio Ghibli Blueprints

A Studio Ghibli fan has compiled some sketched blueprints created by Miyazaki and his team.  They are drawings used to give guidance to the final artists about shot layout, scale, where characters will be etc.  In most animation studios these are very rough sketches but at Studio Ghibli it seems their incredible skills can't help but extend to any drawn work.

All images below are property of Studio Ghibli.


'Pop Inquirer' has put the blueprints next to final images from the films so we can see the final results.

Have a look here:

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Cherry Blossom

My good old mascot cherry blossom with her black hair. 

I originally did this last year but with how I've been blending I wanted to give it another go and see how she'd look. I'm happy with how it came out. A simple but effective way of using the background for her clothes it came out good. 


I've shown the before and after you can see how progression can help. I feel better with how I can effectively blend skin and proportionally make the face.


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Fresh Prince of Bel-Air

A lot of us remember 'The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air' from the 90's.  It was a hugely popular American TV show staring Will Smith.  Recently Howard Russell, an artist from Delaware, created some 2D caricatures of the memorable characters.  These images have flown around social media, even being picked up by Will Smith himself.  It's now lit a fire potnetially opening up the idea of bringing the show back as an animated series.


The image above is taken from Howard Russell's website -  Check it out to see loads of his other cool illustrations.

We think it's a great idea.  We miss the show, plus it's always fantastic when more grown-up animations are picked up.

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Oscars 2018

This week was the 90th Academy Awards ceremony.  Here at Carse and Waterman we're particularly interested in the Best Animated Feature Film award.  The films nominated for the award this year were:

Boss Baby   (DreamWorks Animation)

The Breadwinner   (Cartoon Saloon)

Coco   (Pixar)

Ferdinand   (Blue Sky Studios, Davis Entertainment and 20th Century Fox Animation)

Loving Vincent   (Breakthru Films and Trademark Films)

Trying to decide who would win we were torn between three.  A few in the office loved Boss Baby so that got their vote.  Of course anything by Pixar is always loved by us for its gorgeous 3D renders.  Then Loving Vincent got a vote for it's completely unique way of animating and the high skills and time the artist put into it.

The official winner for Best Animated Feature Film 2018 was:



A well deserved win and we can't say we're disappointed with the result.

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Start Them Young!

Like a lot of youngsters, Nathan loves dinosaurs.  Unlike a lot of youngsters, Nathan's dad is an animator.  The five-year-old spends a lot of time drawing his favourite dinosaurs and imagining stories for them.  This gave his dad the great idea of helping bring the drawings to life.

Nathan drew several images that were then scanned into a computer ready for animating.  He wrote and narrated a story filled with facts about dinosaurs and their ultimate unfortunate demise.

Maybe Nathan will grow up to follow in his dads footsteps and become an artist.

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This week the UK has been hit by a storm the media have dubbed 'The Beast from The East'.  It's a bout of unusually cold weather from the arctic circle that has brought with it lots of snow flurries.  We were reminded of our 2012 animation 'Butch and the Snowman'.


Unfortunately we didn't get enough snow for a snowman as impressive as Butch's.  Instead we just got a very pretty dusting that soon turned into ice! 

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Make a Flipbook

Here's a helpful video showing how to make a flipbook machine out of cardboard.

This is a great idea for those wanting to get a better understanding of how animation works.  It's also a perfect way to have a little bit of fun!


Wed Wabbit

In May last year a children's adventure book was released named 'Wed Wabbit'.  Written by Lissa Evans, the book quickly took the children's market by storm. 


It was recently revealed that the book is set to be made into a film by Locksmith Animation, a London-based CG feature film studio.  The film will most likely be created in partnership with Twentieth Century Fox Film after a deal was stuck between the two.

We love anything that uses the huge talent found in British animation studios!


Space Nebula

Here's an image based on space nebulas.  I've been doing some space art so I wanted to see what it would be like to create one with a flare of colour and a massive sense of space.


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Animated Pancakes

It was pancake day this week!  It was great fun, I always enjoy holidays that involve guilt-free eating.

Mark Simon however likes to play with his food instead.  Here he makes a few pancakes to create a looped animation cycle.  Using the principle of frame by frame 2D animation he 'draws' with the batter then photographs each pancake.  Putting these images together results in a very angry looking pancake trying to take a bite out of a person.

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London Event Welcomes Stoke Animation Studio

Running for over 5 years 'The VFX Festival' is the UK’s leading animation & VFX conference.  This year it took place from the 6th - 8th February at Rix Mix cinema in Shoreditch, London.  It hosts industry leaders in animation and VFX from all over the world.  Bringing everyone together allows a sharing of knowledge with both industry veterans and emerging talent.  It provides an opportunity to learn from the best along with recruitment panels to help artists get their foot in the door.

Our Stoke-on-Trent based studio made it's debut at the London festival as Daniel Waterman was invited to speak on a panel about VFX Producing.  As Carse & Waterman's Company Director and Producer he was well equipped for any questions.


Titled 'Production and Artists: Let’s Bridge the Gap', the panel saw Daniel alongside producers from some of London’s biggest VFX companies.  The lineup consisted of 'Double Negative', 'Framestore', 'The Mill', 'Smoke & Mirrors', 'Moving Picture Company' and of course 'Carse & Waterman Productions'.  In front of an audience of around 50 keen VFX producers and artists, the panel discussed the many challenges of being a producer and how best to work with artists in order to harness their creativity effectively.

Upon his return to Stoke Daniel had this to say:

“It’s nice to show people in London that the industry reaches further than just the capital city.  I think many were surprised to hear that a VFX studio of our calibre was based in Stoke-on-Trent rather than London.  It was great to be on the panel and hear how other producers handle things.  It's also exciting just to be sat next to the VFX Producer of Paddington 2 and Guardians of the Galaxy 2.”

Early Man

Aardman Animations have released its new film 'Early Man'.  The beginning of ideas and concepts started in 2011 but it wasn't until May 2017 that shooting the stopmotion feature began.  Production of the animation involved 33 animators and 37 sets, however there were well over 140 staff needed to bring everything together.

The longest shot took 8 weeks to shoot but only lasts 40 seconds in the final film.


A group of us from the C&W studio are off to the cinema tonight to see it.  We've yet to discover what happens in the story but at least we already know the stop-motion looks great.

Watch the trailer here:

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