Friday, June 27, 2014

Looking Over the Shoulder of Inspector Gadget Animator Len

Look look look! HE'S ANIMATING!


After just discovering the new series designs of Penny and Brain, here we have our very first behind-the-scenes glimpse of the CGI animation process. It's pretty fresh, too: The photo was posted to the Twitter account of a lady named Kelly Regan three days ago, on June 24, with the caption, "Len is animating Inspector Gadget here at DHX Media." (Meaning specifically DHX Halifax.) Adding to that, I think we can also glimpse the storyboard Len is working from right underneath his computer screen. I kinda like that frame of Gadget; it seems to be a slapstick-based shot. One detail which seems a bit weird: there's apparently a lot of space between his eyes and hat. Then again, this might be an extreme moment.

How long has the series been in animation? I'm not sure exactly, but I would guess at least for a couple of months. I learned the name of another animator, Evan Madinsky, through this article on DHX, and Evan's LinkedIn profile tells me that he started out on the show as a layout artist in January but has also been animating since April. So that should give an indication of the production process, though it doesn't necessarily tell us exactly when animation for the series (in general) started.

(I must admit I don't know anything more about the animator Len (his surname is not included), and I'm not 100% sure how the photo uploader Kelly Regan ties into DHX, either. Regan is a politician in Halifax, which doesn't tell me much; but I'm guessing she might be related to David Regan, an executive vice president at DHX.)

4 comments:

  1. Neat find! I enjoy seeing 'making of' shots like this and getting to witness the people behind the cartoon at work. I can spot some storyboard notes under the monitor but it's hard to make out the drawings. Gadget's eyes do seem lower than usual. If he had more pronounced eyebrows it might not look as odd. I'll reserve judgement though since it's a work in progress and in the midst of action as well.

    Have you seen these other ones on Geoff Regan's twitter page? https://twitter.com/geoffregan/status/481550822086836224 and https://twitter.com/geoffregan/status/481554632456822784

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    1. In another photo we can see more of what's on Len's screen: https://twitter.com/MC_HFX/status/481828098888192000

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    2. Oooh, cool, I hadn't seen those other photos! Thanks for the links. How did you find them? They didn't turn up on any of my Google searches for some reason, only the one from Kelly Regan did. I'm especially intrigued by the shot of Penny and Gadget in... hmmm... what? The Gadget mobile? If so, the design seems different from the original.

      I found one more DHX photo on Geoff Regan's Twitter here: https://twitter.com/geoffregan/status/481546205584162816/ I'm not sure, but could that be an Inspector Gadget model sheet up on the wall above those computer screens? Even the sheet's logo reminds me of IG, even if the resolution is too low to read any of it.

      (By the way, just curious, how do you make working links in Blogger comments? :P)

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    3. I found them using Twitter's own search function. The shots of the family in the vehicle are interesting, can't tell much about the car though. It's not yellow so I consider that a good sign.

      Good eye! I missed that one. The model sheet does look very much like Gadget.

      ( Use the 'a href' code for clickable links :) )

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