A new episode of ‘Botos’

Botos is a stop-motion animation series created by Comma Studio in South Korea. Its cute characters are based on three cats Director Heeyoung Lee has at home. Director Lee originally started posting web comics about these cats on her blog, and then moved on to make the animated series. The story centers around the hilarious lives of the cats confronting all kinds of troubles. The series has drawn public attention since pre-production, receiving several awards for its interesting characters and original stories.

Since 2009, I’ve been involved in this project as an armature specialist. The studio has released about 40 episodes so far, broadcasting them on Naver–the largest search portal in Korea. This episode is a parody of a big hit Korean historical drama series. You will see a kitten appear at the end of the episode. The armature for this kitten is an exactly the same with the mouse armature in the Japanese feature, Chieri and Cherry. When Director Lee saw the mouse armature, she thought it was the PERFECT size for her new kitten character!

 

The smallest one so far

This is an armature for a mouse character in a newly released feature, Chieri and Cherry. For this Japanese animation, I’ve made various types of armatures including humanoids, four- and two-legged animals in different sizes from about 5cm to 50cm.

It was quite time-consuming to make various types of armatures in a small quantity. Yet the most challenging part in this project was to make all the customized parts in so many different sizes. In order to make these customized parts and finalized armatures, I needed to spend a lot of time communicating with the puppet fabrication team and the animation team.

This mouse character had to go through the same process. It was supposed to have a lot of movements, so the studio definitely wanted to have a ball-and-socket armature for it. Due to its tiny size, this armature became one of the most tested versions in the project. And it’s the smallest full-bodied armature in ball and socket I’ve ever made so far.

Hyundai Motorsport 2016

Hyundai Motors has recently begun running a brand new commercial for the World Rally Championship 2016. This ad was produced by Comma Studio, Inc., one of the major stop-motion studios in South Korea. The studio has mostly been focusing on features and TV series, as well as various commercials for global companies such as Amway, Samsung and LG.

Comma Studio has made several big sets representing various cities that hold the championship throughout the year. The animators have done an excellent job in creating dynamic speed and thrill of the sport. This commercial has shown technical know-how and skills of the professionals in Comma Studio. I’ve heard that it took them six weeks for the total production.

New ‘Chieri and Cherry’ Trailer Released

I was recently involved in a stop-motion feature film titled Chieri and Cherry as armature specialist. Japanese production company Frontier Works Inc. has lately released a new trailer for this film with English subtitles. It will be screening in Japan soon. The film is about a little girl Chieri, who found a stuffed toy named Cherry at her dad’s funeral. Chieri goes on a journey with Cherry, straddling the line between reality and fantasy. On the course of the journey, she learns some important things about life. This feature is directed by Makoto Nakamura, who supervised the remake of Russian puppet animation Cheburashka a few years ago. This is my second participation for Director Nakamura’s feature as armature supervisor.

Behind the Scenes