What You Might Wanna Know About Me

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All artwork and animation in this blog unless otherwise stated is Copyright © 2015 Eric R. Watson 'AKA' Cyber Six (Cyber Six is not intended to be a play on words. It is in fact a comic book and animation. You may read about them if you'd like by following this link. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cyber_Six) All Rights Reserved. All artwork and content on this blog are property of the artist unless otherwise indicated. Do not use, reproduce, post, copy, or distribute any image or media without permission. I'm an artist and flash animator. Recently, I've begun learning Maya 8.5. Okay, my avatar is not a picture of me. In fact, it is a picture of a famous Japanese singer who sang in an all girl pop group named SPEED during the mid to late 90s. Her name is Hiroko Shimabukuro. Hiro for short. Unfortunately, they disbanded several years ago. I recently found out they are back together and singing as SPEED. Freelance Union Article: 5 Tips for Preventing Procrastination. "Prolific people don’t wait to be moved, they begin the work, and the work moves them to create more." ~ Jonathon Kastner

My Archival Space.. No, It's NOT The Final Frontier

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Story Shots - Emma Coats

Emma Coats was a story artist for Pixar animation studios. I found her tumbr sometime ago while surfing web for writing tutorials on how to write for animation and graphic novels. She's got really cool things to say about film-making and storyboarding in particular. What really got me interested in her tumbr was a post she did about writing. I found it posted somewhere else so I hope posting it here won't be an issue.

(Emma if you'd like me to delete this post please, comment about it on your tumblr and I'll delete it immediately.)

22 #storybasics I’ve picked up in my time at Pixar
I tweeted these forever ago, but the internet just noticed and I figure I should probably at least put them on my blog. I’m glad people are finding them useful.
Here they are, a mix of things learned from directors & coworkers at Pixar, listening to writers & directors talk about their craft, and via trial and error in the making of my own films.
#1: You admire a character for trying more than for their successes.
#2: You gotta keep in mind what’s interesting to you as an audience, not what’s fun to do as a writer. They can be v. different.
#3: Trying for theme is important, but you won’t see what the story is actually about til you’re at the end of it. Now rewrite.
#4: Once upon a time there was ___. Every day, ___. One day ___. Because of that, ___. Because of that, ___. Until finally ___.
#5: Simplify. Focus. Combine characters. Hop over detours. You’ll feel like you’re losing valuable stuff but it sets you free.
#6: What is your character good at, comfortable with? Throw the polar opposite at them. Challenge them. How do they deal?
#7: Come up with your ending before you figure out your middle. Seriously. Endings are hard, get yours working up front.
#8: Finish your story, let go even if it’s not perfect. In an ideal world you have both, but move on. Do better next time.
#9: When you’re stuck, make a list of what WOULDN’T happen next. Lots of times the material to get you unstuck will show up.
#10: Pull apart the stories you like. What you like in them is a part of you; you’ve got to recognize it before you can use it.
#11: Putting it on paper lets you start fixing it. If it stays in your head, a perfect idea, you’ll never share it with anyone.
#12: Discount the 1st thing that comes to mind. And the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th – get the obvious out of the way. Surprise yourself.
#13: Give your characters opinions. Passive/malleable might seem likable to you as you write, but it’s poison to the audience.
#14: Why must you tell THIS story? What’s the belief burning within you that your story feeds off of? That’s the heart of it.
#15: If you were your character, in this situation, how would you feel? Honesty lends credibility to unbelievable situations.
#16: What are the stakes? Give us reason to root for the character. What happens if they don’t succeed? Stack the odds against.
#17: No work is ever wasted. If it’s not working, let go and move on - it’ll come back around to be useful later.
#18: You have to know yourself: the difference between doing your best & fussing. Story is testing, not refining.
#19: Coincidences to get characters into trouble are great; coincidences to get them out of it are cheating.
#20: Exercise: take the building blocks of a movie you dislike. How d’you rearrange them into what you DO like?
#21: You gotta identify with your situation/characters, can’t just write ‘cool’. What would make YOU act that way?
#22: What’s the essence of your story? Most economical telling of it? If you know that, you can build out from there.
You can find more stuff I talk about on twitter as @lawnrocket - film and storytelling mostly. I try to keep the what-I-ate-for-lunch posts to a minimum.


There is no intention of copyright infringement. This is for educational purposes only.