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Archive for April, 2012

The Fabrics of Design

April 30, 2012 1 comment

Throughout the digital revolution, I have kept my design process as organic as I possibly can. I like to be able to start my thinking by being in touch with real materials and things, which allow my five senses to send information, back to my brain for further analyses and assessment. Starting in such a way puts me in control as the further creative and production processes unfold.

I mention this above as an introduction to two aspects, which creatively still rely on working this way – Interior Design and Production Design.

One encounter early on in my career was meeting and working with the late production designer and art director Anton Furst, on the set of the first Batman film and in those days analogue technology was all we knew. I could see even then while watching and talking to Anton how at one he was with his craft. He and his room at Pinewood Studios looked like something out of a ‘Charles Dickens’ novel. Drawings in thick 6B pencil on large pieces of paper of his vision of Gotham City. Materials, sections of plaster casts of shapes etc covered the room and walls, it looked at first hand more like chaos. But when I asked him about how he worked he said that he simply worked from what his thoughts told him and then he made them real in the world. I needed to know more evidence on how I should work no matter how the technology would evolve in the future.

So when we embarked recently of the title sequence for Day of the Flowers for John Roberts, we wanted to source real wallpaper and fabrics which would be in keeping with Cuban interiors of the 70s. I didn’t have to look far because only a stones throw away is Skinners of Tunbridge Wells, where I can delve into a rich world of fabrics, papers and paints, which cover a wide spectrum of interior design styles and tastes.

John Roberts Day of the Flowers

In this warm friendly atmosphere I can be left alone to just flick through fabulous designs with no intention or purpose, only to look and occasionally stroke the resident Pug Ester.

Skinners have also played a valuable role in my art collection © Cut UK, where they have used my art within their interior design projects. Skinners was established in 1886 and the present proprietor Jane Stollery is the owner of a special one-off Cut image Human five, which is displayed in her own home as seen in the picture below.

Jane Stollery

Jane Stollery says “As a designer I appreciate the talent captured in the ‘Cut’ images – they are in a class of their own and each with a story. Paintings, Art and image based Wallpapers play an important role in the finish of an interior and with ‘Cut’, there is something for everyone.”

© Cut UK has also featured recently in films as part of the room settings. John Paul Frazer production designer on ‘Progression’ which is currently in postproduction from Shooting Movies, used various ‘Cut’ images as part of his production design.

Shooting Movies

'Cut' on the set of 'Progression (working title)' for Shooting Movies

Without meeting Anton who knows if my future would have been and continues to be so rich – inspiring people is a gift to us all.

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© Cut UK Now Online

April 23, 2012 2 comments

Cut UKOne of those ‘things’ that I have collected over many years takes the form of rotten paper on billboards and posts which nature has made its own. The torn and weathered images are gathered from my constant wanderings within city streets, which I have photographed across the world.

Some time ago I showed my collection to my friend Lynda Ralph-Knight who suggested that I showed them to C.F. Smith, the paper manufacturer and bingo they published them in a book titled simply ‘Cut’. Shortly after I pitched for the film ‘High Fidelity’ for Stephen Frears, which I won and I used my images as the core to the main idea for the end title sequence.

Since then I have set up countless exhibitions, displaying my collections in galleries and art clubs such as The Chelsea Arts Club. Over the years I have sold private collections and one-off pieces to clients and friends alike, such as Ian Hart of Timothy James & Partners Ltd., Mo Henry of MBH and film sound supervisor Eddy Joseph. Now many pieces hang in homes throughout Europe and around the world.

Cut UKMarie Hewitt, Director Individual Interior Solutions Limited recently commented, “Richard’s pieces of art can transform the look and feel of a room, whether it’s for Commercial, Marine or your Home. His art is just right to bring a sense of magic to any interior design, creating that perfect finishing touch”.

Cut UK

Please email: cut@richard-morrison.co.uk if you would like an invitation to our virtual online gallery, and we will happily send you login details so you can view and purchase.

 

Jonathan Frid dies at age 87

We are sad to see that Jonathan Frid, who played the original vampire Barnabas Collins in the 60’s TV show Dark Shadows, has died at the age of 87.

Jonathan died of natural causes in his hometown of Hamilton in Canada, just on the eve of the release of Tim Burton’s film version, which is due to hit cinemas on May 11th.

Jonathan has a cameo role in the upcoming film appearing alongside Johnny Depp, who plays Barnabas. In an interview Johnny expressed admiration for the job Jonathan did as the original character, calling it “so special”.

Dark Shadows ran on ABC from 1966 to 1971, but Jonathan did not join the show as the villainous vampire until its second year. During the time Jonathan played the character, Barnabas developed into more than a just villain showing a more sympathy and romantic side with complex emotions.

It is a shame that Jonathan will not get to see if Johnny’s portrayal of the role lives up to his own.

R.I.P. Jonathan Frid 1924 – 2012

Jonathan Frid

Free Runnerz

While I have been battling intergalactic martians in Soho this week. Dean has been at warp speed with creating a new fabulous identity for David Bonner’s Sci-Fi Action Series Free Runnerz. This is what he beamed down and I wanted to share it with you Earthlings.

Free Runnerz is a 3D CGI animated series of 52 x 15 minute episodes set in the not too far off future. In an Earth that has had its environment ruined by profit guzzling business conglomerates and non-visionary politicians, a cruel alien race, invisible to humans, waits in the shadows to make their move. This slightly dark and edgy animated series has a group of unlikely 8-16 year old orphans known as the ‘Free Runnerz’ as the heroes.

Free Runnerz

Free Runnerz is one of many of David’s projects. Originally an Inspector in the Northumbria Police, David medically retired in 1998 after being assaulted on duty. He moved on to become involved in the children’s animation industry, creating original ideas, character origination and development. Also script writing and script editing whilst securing commissions as a producer for many award winning animated children’s shows.

During his time, David has been the creator and writer, producer on the animated BBC commissioned show The Lampies, which sold in over 70 countries. As well creating both Doctor Otter and Sergeant Stripes which sold internationally and were also commissioned by the BBC.

He is due to start pre-production as co-writer and co-producer on the new British movie Tick Tock Boom some time this year.

Communication through movie titles…

April 19, 2012 1 comment

Richard Morrison

…normally, the running of the front titles is a period during which the audience rustles popcorn, makes small talk with their neighbours, or simply explores their seat for long-range comfort.

When the movie itself begins, there is usually an initial ‘cold’ period.

However, a strong main title or sequence can be sufficiently provocative and entertaining to induce the audience to sit down and ‘look and listen’, because something is really happening and communicating with them on screen.

I believe at this moment it is possible to project a symbolic foretaste of what is to come, and to create a receptive atmosphere that will enable the movie to begin on a seamless and higher level of audience participation.

The end of the movie when the credits start is again another chance to graphically communicate and reintroduce the visual style, which is unique to each movie. Like a book cover has a front and back cover.

 

Phil Spector main titles now in post

It’s been a while since we blogged our win for MBH for producing the titles for David Mamet’s adaptation of the Phil Spector trial for HBO.

Well I have been busy with Dean and Mo Henry over the last few months working up title designs in collaboration with the films Editor Barbara Tulliver and 1st Assistant Editor Craig Hayes.

We are at final stages now on the main titles and they are now in post production for delivery this week.

Starring Al Pacino as Phil Spector, the HBO drama is centred on the relationship between Phil Spector and defense attorney Linda Baden (Helen Mirren), while the music business legend was on trial for the murder of Lana Clarkson.

We’ll post a release date when we all know more.

Al Pacino as Phil Spector

Al Pacino as Phil Spector

Oscar Winner Chris Innis Crews Up

We are glad to announce that Dean and I, along with Mo Henry, will be joining the crew for our good friend Chris Innis. We will be creating the title sequence for Chris’s new short psychodrama It Must Be Nice, through our LA based company MBH.

Chris, who won a 2010 Oscar for Best Film Editing for The Hurt Locker, is taking on the role as Producer, Writer and Director for her new project which is based on the story I’m Better Than You written by Henry Slesar, who wrote for Alfred Hitchcock Presents.

Featured recently in Below The Line, Chris talks in the article about the film, what she has been doing and who she has on-board. It’s well worth the read, so please have a look for yourself. Here is the link to the article:

http://www.btlnews.com/news/oscar-winning-editor-chris-innis-crews-up/

Chris Innis

Oscar Winning Editor Chris Innis

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