March 03, 2011

ZachMG Interview

1) What inspired you to start brickfilming?

1. I was first introduced to stop-motion by a friend of mine when we were bored one day over the summer in 2004. Our films were incredibly rough, shot using a MiniDV camera using the 'hit the record button on and off quickly' technique. As bad as our films looked, though, this was my first real exposure to stop-motion animation, and I recall that I was instantly intrigued by it.

A few months later, I stumbled upon a short LEGO-animated video on Yahoo! by a group called Spite Your Face, titled "Spider-Man: The Peril of Doc Ock" (you can watch it here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7w5SdKABSDM). I was absolutely amazed at the quality of the animation and production design, it was unlike anything I'd seen before. I then remembered that I had a whole closet filled with boxes of LEGO that I hadn't touched since my childhood, and I thought to myself, "I wonder if I could make something like that?"


2) Who is your favourite brickfilmer and what is your favourite brickfilm?

2. This is always a tough question for me, because there are so many talented brickfilmers out there (active or not) that I couldn't possibly choose just one. Of the still-active brickfilmers, some of my favorites are SpastikChuwawa, Keshen8, Fancypants, SmeagolStudios, filmyguy, 0ldScratch, Paganomation, and probably several others I'm forgetting.


Same goes for favorite brickfilm, because I've watched so many great brickfilms over the years that it's almost impossible for me to just settle on one. If I was really forced to narrow down my list, it would be between two films: Good Company: Redux by hali9 and Cognizance by Cometgreen (both are available on YouTube). Not only have they been prime sources of inspiration for me since I first started brickfilming, but are some of the most affecting pieces of animation I've seen, and truly push the boundaries of what LEGO animation can be capable of in terms of storytelling. 3) What is your favourite lego set?

3. I dunno, hard to say. I'm not really much of a LEGO enthusiast outside of brickfilming, so I rarely pay attention to the aesthetics of actual sets. However, I have been a big fan of the 'City Street' sets that LEGO has produced lately, such as Cafe Corner, Market Street, Green Grocer, etc. They're incredibly detailed and well-designed, and I had a lot of fun constructing them.


4) Did you ever think you would become this popular?

4. No, I never expected my films to become as popular as they have, and I'm extremely grateful for it. I first created my YouTube account at the request of a friend at school after I finished and screened my Macbeth project (Macbeth: Act 5 Scene 7), mostly just with the intention of being able to send my films easily to friends and family. I uploaded more and more films but never really paid much attention to how they were being received, until I realized one day, "Whoa, The Laws of Sir Isaac Newton has almost 30,000 hits and I have nearly 1000 subscribers! When did this happen?" So all of this pretty much blindsided me, and it was a rather pleasant surprise to say the very least. 5) Which of your animations was the most fun to work on?

5. I think my favorite film to work on was Mirrored Perspective, mostly because it allowed me the opportunity to really experiment around with lighting, staging, and animation. Since it was shot with two individual minifigures rather than use a mirror effect, the most difficult part of the process was not only making sure that the actions of the two minifigs matched each other as perfectly as possible, but that the lighting setups on both of them matched as well. As frustrating as it sometimes was, I think it was probably the best and most educational experience in animation I've had.


6) Are you family and friends supportive?

6. Yes, my friends and family have always been very kind and supportive of my hobby, and I'm incredibly grateful for that.


7) Have you ever had any issues with another YouTuber?

7. Problems with another YouTuber? Nope, not off the top of my head.

8)When do you plan on stop making these films?

8. At the moment, I don't have plans to stop-animating in the near future. That's not to say that I'll be animating forever, but animation has been so good to me for the last few years, that I think I'll try and ride this out for however long I can

9) Do you

have any tips for aspiring animators?

9. Have patience and a keen eye for detail. Stop-motion is a very long and tedious process, and it's easy to become frustrated and give up. Just be sure to take your time, don't rush through it, and if you feel yourself start to become upset or fed up, don't be afraid to walk away and take a break for a while. Better that than lose all interest in the hobby because you push yourself too hard to the point where it stops being enjoyable.


That said, don't be afraid to spend as much time as you need while animating. Don't rush through animation simply because it can feel tedious; if you need to spend several minutes at a time on each frame, then by all means, do. In the long run, the extra work will pay off.


10) What are your plans for the future?

10. At the moment, I'm in college, so I plan to continue my education until I graduate. I also plan to continue animating, though I may also dabble in live-action filmmaking here and there. Beyond that, I couldn't really say, since I don't really know.


5 comments:

  1. The questions arent there?

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  2. High5ProductionsMarch 4, 2011 at 2:00 PM

    yeah, i really wanna know what you told them.

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  3. Hmmm...
    Why are the questions EXACTLY the same as one from BT? Link: http://bricktuts.com/2011/01/exclusive-forrestfire101-interview.html

    I'll let this one pass. But I hope this doesn't repeat and I have notified the admin.

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  4. I have already been watching ZachMG's movies and also others like filmyguy1, spastikchuwawa,keshen8, supercoolclark, eanimation, blobstudios, and one more, perritodeoro, who is a youtuber whose just getting the hang of animating. As for myself, well, I realy want to do it but I have realized you have to do a LOT of test animations to get the shot you want. (I have not even made a full Lego Animation because i'm so new to this.)

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  5. Well Vc I can explain that when I did this I had a really small amount of time and I didnt really have time to find any of the questions. So I hope you accept my apologies.

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