Long Time No See

Long Time No See

Thomas Bayman
by thomthom on 31 May 2022 for Rookie Awards 2022

A short 2D animated film about a cat missing his friend in a lonely city, only to be sent on a wild chase trying to catch a precious photo.

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This is a project I worked on my self over the course of my final year at the University of Hertfordshire, on the 2D animation course. 

I started the development of this film with the story, which went through many iterations. I had many ideas for what I wanted to make but decided that I wanted to make a film with a cat running through a city. Originally, the film was meant to be a lot more cartoony and the main character was meant to fall out of their window after slipping in the shower, which is why in some of the character designs below they're wearing a towel. But in the ended I wanted to make something with more heart and so I kept the chase through the city and added the plot of the cat character missing their friend. The thumbnails for the story can be found below.

I followed up the work on the story by working on the design of the main character. This was an important step for me as I wanted to ensure that the character was as appealing and fun to animate as possible so that I enjoyed working on this project. I imagined the main character as a grumpy type but with a soft spot for their friends (I think their name is Tony but I never properly settled on one). I made sure to convey this in the designs by going for a scruffy, unkempt appearance. 

I settled on this design as it felt right to me and I believed it had stronger appeal over other designs I'd made and that it best suited the personality of the character, I wanted the character to have an overall square shape to symbolise their grumpy personality but something still rounded that represented their softer side and I felt this design best captured that. This design was loosely based on the real life Pallas's cat! But from here I opted to continue iterating upon the design further just to make sure it was just right.

I finally settled on the design below and made a turnaround and character sheets for the character as well.

In addition to the main character, I did some design work for the other character in my film, who I wanted to come across as a cool and confident type. 

After designing the characters, I took the thumbnails I'd made previously and turned them into storyboards, then using those images to make an animatic 

In addition I designed the colours and the backgrounds for this project, the process for which can be seen below. When designing the backgrounds I took a lot of inspiration from the architecture of New York since it is a design I'm a fan of, I also wanted the city to feel busy to accentuate the main character's loneliness. 

The backgrounds came out like these examples from the film below, which were made in Procreate.

Here's the poster I made for the film as well!

All of this development led to the final film that you can see at the top. 

Thank you for reading through this record of my work from the past 7 months! 

If you would like to see more of my work, my showreel and contact details can be found on my website at this link below


Just also want to give a massive thanks to my friends and family for supporting me and being amazing people!

Thank you so much again for reading through this journey! I really enjoyed working on this project and I hope you enjoyed reading this and watching the film too!

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