Archive for the ‘Graphics’ Category





Aardman Studios, Bristol

What a great place! Yasmin, Neil and I went down to Bristol last Friday to look around Aardman Studios, where they make lots of well known animation characters. These are: Wallace & Grommit, Creature Comforts, Change for Life, Morph & Chas, Chicken Run and many more….. I did feel starstruck, even though they were only man-made characters, yet they were part of my youth. I watched them often as a child.

As soon as we entered the reception area, we saw the props used for The Pirate film. They were amazing and large in scale. We suddenly felt excited.  We also saw the original drawings from previous work in frames on the white walls. I couldn’t wait for the tour and to see where the characters were created.

Aardman Studios has two buildings. The old building is were they make the models and the new section is where the computer animation is done (as well as the marketing and admin functions). I took some pics of what we saw; reception, Oscar and Bafta awards and the modelling studio. We also saw the painted Sean the Sheep statues that will be seen around Bristol and London next year (2015). I haven’t put these in this post.  Aardman are currently working on a new film and a top secret advert, so we were unable to look at these.

If you want to look at more of their fab work, take a look at their web site

Here are just some of the pics taken on our tour


Reception Area


Aardman foyer


Oscar & Baftas




Yasmin with Oscars

Yasmin standing next to the Oscar and two Baftas. This photo courtesy of Peter Roberts of Flex Storytellers.


Wallace & Grommit





Duracell Bunny





Morph & Chas




Other cheeky characters












Our holiday in St.Ives

I have been on a few mini breaks this year, yet I was looking forward to my summer holiday the most!

I managed to drag myself away from my computer (have been super busy over the past few weeks with work) and take a few days break. Neil, Yasmin and I went to stunning St.Ives. I just love St.Ives. It is so different compared to Cheshire. Also you come back feeling super chilled (suppose you do with any holiday!) and I caught some sun rays too! I was very tempted to try surfing, however didn’t this time. Even though there was sunshine, at times the breeze got very cold.  It was fun watching the other guys ride on their boards in the waves.

Whilst we were there,we visited Penzance, Hayle,and Mousehole. Out of all of these places, my fave has to be St.Ives – the cobbled, winding streets, boutique clothing (love ‘Off the Beaten Track‘) and gift shops, cheeky seagulls, curved harbour and the selection of restaurants. I even tried a soft-shelled crab ‘burger’. When reading the menu, I imagined a fish cake pattie, made from crab meat. When I opened the bun to take a peek, it was actually a whole crab with the nasty bits taken out, covered in batter. It was not what I had expected and resembled a giant deep fried spider in a bun. It did taste good though! Neil and Yasmin had waffles,which were huge and smothered in chocolate and whipped cream.

I took plenty of pics and wanted to give them a retro sun-kissed look, like photographs from when I was little. I attempted this technique in Photoshop and found out how to create this look on Chris Spooner’s blog (quick tip, if you read that blog article – after creating the magenta layer, select this and the image layer together, then select all (Ctrl/Cmd A) and copy merged (Shift+Ctrl/Cmd A) before blurring. It is a step which seems to be missing form the article).

Overall, I am pleased with my first attempts and the effect it has given to the holiday snaps.


BEFORE PIC – Boats in St.Ives harbour




AFTER PIC – With the retro analogue effect



I wanted to give the illusion of my time in St.Ives a nostalgic feel and softened the background,as well as changing the levels and adding subtle hints of over exposure (red sections).





This pic has a yellow tint and definitely reminds me of photographs taken when I was younger. Digital cameras don’t have this effect,whereas older cheap cameras used film and so colour washes,light leaks and blurring were all common problems that appeared during the processing stage.



I have just added pink stains on this pic. On this particular day,the waves weren’t big enough. The poor surfers only managed to surf on smaller waves.



The colours in the clouds are lovely and I added a yellow tint where there was more light exposed through the opening of the clouds.



I added a gaussian blur to this pic and brought myself and Yasmin to the foreground,adding red tints to Yasmin’s hair and the background. Also brightening the central section between us both.



This pic is one of my faves. I have again blurred the background and focused on our faces,adding over exposure to outer sections.



This pic of Neil,I have added a yellow tint and some subtle red over exposed areas.



One of the cheeky seagulls!



Found this interesting looking building on one of the side streets in Penzance.



I love the softness in this pic. Again I brought the faces in the foreground and added a yellowish tint over the whole photograph using the levels in Photoshop.



Again,another soft focused pic where we are stood near the harbour in Penzance. The pink areas go well with the rest of the pastel shades in the background.

I will definitely try use this technique again and would like to experiment more with the over exposure areas.