Creativity Base

Tag: design

Fundraising: Buy a LEGO costume or product to help us fundraise for a feature documentary

by on Feb.27, 2012, under Our Projects, Tips & Advice

Fundraising with a Lego twist

Back in August of 2011, Emma Sterling and I commenced work on our first documentary feature film project, entitled Cuttlefish Country. Funded initially by our inner circle of family and friends via generous gift donations at our wedding, we carefully considered extra measures to support us through what has became an unexpectedly long production period. Danimations is rarely known to do things conventionally, and we ultimately decided to combine our fundraising objectives with the development of a range of fun products. The rationale was simple: raise money, awareness and smiles all with some clever merchandising ideas, and a few web 2.0 tools.

 

13 Lego Blue Space Shirt Lego Black Space Shirt Lego Red Space Shirt

After producing some project-specific designs and products, a spin-off line of products was created, inspired by our reignited passion for LEGO bricks and building. One of the production techniques we decided upon for our film as the story unfolded was to build and animate replicas of real-world places, vehicles and scenarios from Cuttlefish Country out of LEGO. This in turn inspired a range of t-shirts, apparel, badges, hats and other items derived from and inspired by vintage Lego worlds and figures.

Choosing the fundraising platform

Early in the project’s life, we had decided to crowd-source additional funds for the film, via  a listing on the website Kickstarter. To register with Kickstarter, you must offer donors to your project a teared set of incentives, thankyou gifts in effect, to encourage cash pledges towards your project. This decision was ultimately postponed due to a lack of time and staff in our tiny crew, so instead we took a different tack. Having had prior experience with making custom products on Zazzle and RedBubble, we decided to create some LEGO themed products which could act as fun gifts as well as raise some money for our ongoing production. We even threw a LEGO party, and encouraged friends to bring bricks along to help us build our animated sets or buy some of our products to wear for the occasion.

01 lego divers dolphin hat Lego Divers Dolphin Shirt Lego Divers Dolphin Sticker
 

Design, Customise & Deliver

Our LEGO designs began with the dolphin logo which originally appeared on vintage Lego divers back in the 1990’s. Next came designs from townsfolk’s minifig shirts and eventually some classics were released from vintage space and knights lines. You will find them all available for purchase below. If you haven’t shopped at Zazzle or Redbubble before, you’ll be impressed by the way you, the customer, are able to further customise these products. You can easily change the garment style and colour, or in the case of Zazzle, even add your own creative flair by adding extra text or images to the design and modifying the layout. From the maker’s perspective, these web 2.0 tools are excellent, as the service provider handles production and delivery, and simply returns a royalty back to you as the creator of the artwork. Establishing stores on these sites is free of charge, and royalties on purchases are set manually by you, the store owner.

 

   

   

I hope you enjoy our little selection of Lego ispired costumes, shirts and products here. If you do purchase one of our items, we’d love to see a picture of you putting it to use when it arrives. We will be hosting a gallery of our friends and fans over at our Cuttlefish Country website in the future.

  

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Art: danimations launches debut photographic wall calendar

by on Dec.14, 2009, under Our Projects, Tips & Advice

I’ve been a fan of custom culture for the best part of my life- since churning out personal designs on my 9-pin dot matrix printer back in the ‘eighties. Lucky for us (the makers and the consumers) the days of home-made Print Shop calendars and greeting cards are mostly behind us now, and an exciting and (relatively) new trend is taking hold. I’m talking about custom merchandise, made to order from uploaded designs, delivered direct to customers through the wonder of the internet. A few years ago, a friend tipped me off to the existence of one such site called Cafepress, and then in 2007 I discovered its more evolved counterpart, Zazzle. A string of mugs, shirts, shoes and miscellaneous purchases (and sales) later, Emma Sterling and I have finally made some of our internationally crafted photographic works available as a premium quality Redbubble calendar.

The calendar features images taken by Emma Sterling and myself, over our last few years of artistic globe-trotting. The USA, Canada, Mexico, Singapore and Australia are all featured, with subjects including landscapes, scenics, architecture and the occasional detail. I hope you enjoy the images as they flick past in the RedBubble slide show below- and please check out the link above if you’d like to take a closer look at our very first deluxe photo calendar. As fondly as I recall those days of brashly printing out black and white greeting cards on sprocketed computer paper, these are pretty amazing times we’re living in. Surely there’s never been a better time to be an in independent artist, with tools like these at our disposal?

Oh, and if you make a purchase, be sure to take a photo of your item once it’s on the wall, and we’ll happily post it in our flickr gallery. We’ll also mail you a little surprise follow-up gift… it is nearly Christmas after all!

Dan Monceaux

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Tomorrow Studio: a new home for digital media in Adelaide

by on Aug.23, 2009, under Great Finds, Our Projects, Tips & Advice

Back in June, Emma Sterling and I moved our digital media business, danimations, into an exciting new premises. Located at Level 1, 193 Wakefield Street in Adelaide’s downtown CBD is the Tomorrow Studio, a South Australian state Government initiative to bring complementary start-up companies from the digital media sector together, to foster a culture of collaboration and rapid growth. We are very proud and fortunate to be a part of it.

Offering the added benefits of heavily subsidised rent, terrific shared facilities and a tenancy contract that can be exited with minimum fuss, we applied back in the first quarter of 2009, and moved in with the first wave of tenants in June. The culture of collaboration is strong already, and under our roof we have a spread of businesses offering services including web, graphic design, animation, 3d graphics, multimedia, network services, video (that’s us), simulations, game development and electronic publishing. No two businesses are in direct competition, and we’re able to keep our own hours with 24 hour access to the building. Many of the tenants (us included) have lock-up offices, while the remainder work in the building’s open-plan central space.

Emma Sterling edits in the danimations office

Emma Sterling edits in the danimations office

We’ve had a great run with the Department of Trade & Economic Development this year, and the Tomorrow Studio move follows our receipt of a Tomorrow Start grant which has help us upgrade our computers and aquire new technology and software- thrusting us over some major hurdles stunting our business’ growth. With the official champagne launch rolling by the other week, we finally feel like we’re ready to rhumba in the new space.

The Department of Trade has recently announced a second round of grants available to start-up businesses in the digital media sector, and there are currently some vacancies for new tenants in the Tomorrow Studio following the announcement that Holopoint (a leading games and simulation developer) has outgrown the space and is moving to another more suitable location.

For more information on the Tomorrow Start grants and the Tomorrow Studio, visit http://www.creativesa.org/

Dan Monceaux

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