To say this book has been a long time in the making would be an understatement. Way back in 2008, David Pagano taught an “Introduction to LEGO Animation” workshop at Brickworld Chicago. After it was over, David Pickett walked up and nervously introduced himself as “that guy that made that weird brickfilm that one time.” Ever since, we’ve been building a friendship and creative partnership using films and LEGO bricks (and awkwardly referencing ourselves in the third-person).
One of the first things we bonded over was how frequently we were asked intensely specific questions about animating, such as:
- “What is the exact model of camera that you use?”
- “How many frames per second do you shoot?”
- “How did you make your character do that cool thing at 2:17 in your last movie?”
We love seeing so many people eager to learn more about the subject we’re most passionate about, but there’s only so much you can explain in a short conversation or a YouTube comment. So in 2011, we started talking seriously about writing a book that could answer these questions in detail. Over the last five years, this book has grown from a dream in our heads to a real physical thing you will be able to hold in your hands. (It will also be available as an e-book—slightly less tangible, but still easier to access than the insides of our minds.)
In addition to answering the questions listed above, the book will also contain:
- A step-by-step guide for making your first animation
- Techniques for creating special effects like explosions and flying minifigures
- Acting methods for your minifigs—learn how to convey action and emotion
- The SECRET FORMULA for bringing inanimate objects to life
- Tips and tricks for designing sets—make three buildings look like an entire city!
- Advice for dealing with practical problems like lighting, framing, and capturing consistent photos
- Building ideas for LEGO-based camera dollies and rigs
- Instructions and inspiration on the filming process, from storyboarding to post-production
- Recommendations for cameras, software, and other essential animation tools
We’re excited to be working with No Starch Press as our publisher; they have a long history of publishing great books about the LEGO hobby. You can pre-order The LEGO Animation Book through their website. Our hope is that this book will inspire and educate a whole new generation of LEGO filmmakers. We can’t wait to feature their films here on The Set Bump.
P.S. – If you noticed that our blogging decreased sharply in mid-2014, you now know why. We’ll be busy wrapping up the book over the next few months, but we’ll be back to blogging with gusto afterwards.