Monday, 7 November 2011

Making of Streamschool

A little girl has an adventure with water as she travels from a small brook to the sea. A tale of growing up based on a Hungarian poem.

      Streamschool was my graduation film in BA Animation at Moholy- Nagy University of Arts and Design. I chose the poem from a Hungarian contemporary poet called Zsolt Miklya to make a short film for children.
The production was only two months long because at the same time I was attending an animation course called ASF (Animation Sans Frontieres) and the rest of that term was really short.

      When I had the final idea in mind I asked my friend Kati Egely to do the backgrounds for my film (she makes beautiful pictures and puppets using different textiles). We planned out the timing and the storyboard roughly together and then she sewed the backgrounds. Then I designed the main character "Dora" who travels through and explores this beautiful imaginary world.

Dora the main character

Final pictures

      After the tests the production has started. I used the Dragon stop motion software to shoot the film which is an amazingly helpful software and the best to make stop motion. To be able to animate the characters and the backgrounds on more layers I built a small layered glass table.
My aim was to make all the effects in stop motion instead of using computer generated ones. The simplest and the most spectacular idea which came into my mind one day while swimming was that I put an old jar under the camera to create the effects of the under water scene. As I rolled the jar frame by frame it caused a distortion which gave this amazing wavering effect. Check it out here:

Process from the shooting until the final result.

      Another important choice was that at the beginning Dora (the little girl) wasn't planned to be in the film's beginning and I didn't want to re shoot the previous scenes so I animated Dora over the already done stop motion backgrounds in flash. When all the scenes were finished I could start working on the sound design and the composition.

      My biggest inspirations in the animation style and mood were two films; the well known Her morning elegance and another great cut-out music video called Hello Antenna
Because I wanted to be fast but still have a professional result at the end I made test animations in flash for the more complicated parts to use them as a guide animating under the stop motion camera. Here are two of them: "fish jumping" and "big waves coming".

      Making sounds is an entertaining and creative work that I enjoy all the time; making them, finding them and even copying parts from other movies to put all them together to get a totally new and unique result...
      I was quite fortunate finding this beautiful piece of music which became the theme of the film. The composer and also graphic designer is a talented guy called Ábris Gryllus known as YVEIN MONQ.
The Hungarian narration of the film was told by Piroska Molnár one of the most famous actress in Hungary. I wanted her to narrate it because she has such a strong but still warm character like a grandmother and a huge experience in her past.
My friend JOSEPH WALLACE (a talented British filmmaker) made the English translation and THOMAS VILLEMONTEIX the French which was narrated by the actress MURIEL RACINE.

      I could finish the film blissfully at the end of May just before my graduation was. It was greeted quite well at the animation department in MOME. It has visited 10 international festivals, small and big ones.
I plan to continue this project as a series of poem animations (after I graduated in MA) using and developing this wonderful spectacle and technique to let both children and adults wonder and explore in new exciting and imaginary worlds.


  1. Fantastic! A really inspiring film and this is such an in depth behind the scenes. The jar you used for the underwater effect is incredible! Thanks again for sharing your work!
    I made a multi-plane setup like this myself a while back, though I used an ikea lakk table as the basic frame so that it's portable and pretty sturdy, of course it's much smaller than your multi-plane, but it's fairly versatile still.

  2. Thank you Guys,
    I'm glad you like and enjoy it!

  3. Hello! I found your video on the Thinking Animation Blog.

    Love it!!!!!!

  4. Thanks Becca, you'll may like this one as well... (because of the beirut song)

  5. Inspiring absolutely inspired me, thank you.

  6. What a beautiful movie - deeply inspiring. Love it. I made a link to your movie on my blog - hope you don't mind
    Have a great day

  7. Beautiful! It reminds me of when I was growing up. My father was Hungarian, but sadly I do not speak it.

  8. I wish it was longer. It's aesthetic is beautiful.

  9. AWESOME! I watch it in loop
    great work, Could I make a post on my blog about this animation,pls?
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  10. Szia Péter! Láttam a videót Tumblr és kerestem a webhelyen. Szép munka! Gratulálunk és sok szerencsét.

  11. Köszönöm szépen! Örülök, hogy tetszett!

  12. I know that you know... Your films are wonderful :)

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  14. bellissimo! Le scene sott'acqua sono spettacolari

  15. I really thankful to you for this great read!! You did a very great job, keep it up.animated video production

  16. This is really a wonderful work !! Congratulations, very inspiring video ! Hope you'll make some others soon :)
    Here's my own animated graduation film :
    Good luck and keep animating/directing you are really talented !

    1. Thank you Marie!
      It's really kind of you to give me such a feedback! Actually I've already made a new film which is my MA grad film :) here is the trailer

      Your film is really beautiful and impressive - I was amazed when the shadow tears down the room wall... thank you for sharing and congratulation!

      Good luck to you too!

  17. One of the most beautiful stop motion I've seen!
    The poem is so delicate and all the texture work... the underwater was great! I saw the making of just to see how you did it! Congratulations! And thank you for sharing.

    Best regards,

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. Hello Carol,

      Thank you very much for your kind feedback, I'm glad you liked it!
      Have a nice day!

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