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" As Givebutter launches their amazing new site (and the sensational About Us video we made for them 😏), we'd like to elevate and celebrate the sensational gifts and abilities of Mercedes Ronnander, the brilliant mind behind a LOT of the animation we do here on the 🏝. Ms. Ronnander, where would we be without you?"

Cameron Strittmatter, Co-Founder & Director, Failure Island

Working with Failure Island is always a unique adventure because the aesthetic they aim for tends toward the zany and exuberant. Givebutter was no exception to this rule! From day one, I knew it would require different animation muscles than I was accustomed to because much of this project utilized true stop motion, in addition to computer generated stop motion animation. 


Since neither the director nor I had ever undertaken true stop motion before, the ideation process took some time. We decided to each complete our own storyboard based on the script. Then we hosted what we called a "storyboard duel," which really was more of a storyboard mashup, as we took ideas from each of our storyboards to create a unique story we couldn't have developed individually. 

My storyboard is on the right, and the completed on is below. 

Pass #1: Storyboard

Final Storyboard

Production​ Animation

After assisting on set for the live action portion of the production, the art director, Blake Brown, and I turned to the animation portion. 

Setting up shop in our alma mater, Blake and I collaborated to develop the layouts for the scrapbook, find online assets to use int eh digital portion of the project, and photographed the stop motion assets that would comprise my library. 

This stop motion library became, if you'll excuse the expression, my bread and butter for the remainder of this project.

buttering toast_01.gif
button roll_01.gif

"Post-Production" Animation​

After creating all the physical assets for the project, it was time to move into actually creating the project. All in all, from ideation to the end of this "post-production" animation process, this project took about a month to complete. There were extensive notes, easy notes, and last-minute notes, but all that feedback made this project into a true "feather in [my] cap" as Cameron called it. I am proud of the product and I hope you enjoy it. If you'd like to view the whole video, look for the YouTube icon in the lower left corner. 

How We Started

The Call that Changed Everything

The Birth of Givebutter

  • YouTube
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