Emma Calder, 2nd October 2012

Emma with Artwork

Our special guest and speaker was animator, artist and illustrator Emma Calder, who talked about and presented a selection of her work from 1981 to the present. I am very grateful to her for all the effort she went to in selecting films and bringing along examples of her books, copies of actual painted frames from The Queen’s Monastery and even the puppet from Random Person.

In her talk she described how she studied Graphic Design at the Royal College of Art in the early 1980s, where she started making animations and has Bob Godfrey to thank for encouraging her. (Bob Godfrey is, incidentally, the patron saint of London Animation Club). You can read Emma’s blog about this film http://emmacaldersmoodydays.blogspot.co.uk/2011/10/moody-twenty-eight.html. Afterwards she worked on numerous projects, including commissioned stings and music videos, and a whole load of films with Ged Haney with whom she set up the production company Pearly Oyster Productions in 1989. At the moment Emma is working on a series of 52 stop-motion micro-shorts called Random Person. Emma has also pursued a parallel career as an illustrator and writer of books. What was particularly interesting was the range of techniques Emma has used from the very beginning: cut-outs, potato prints, ink and wash on paper and stop-motion of puppets.

First up Emma gave a short introduction to her work and background. A video of this talk will shortly be going up on the London Animation Club YouTube channel.

Emma then showed:

The Queen’s Monastery (1998, 6’00”)

This is, quite simply, one of the best animations I have ever seen.

The Turd Family Go On Holiday (1989, 0’20”)

Ilkla Moor Baht Hat (1981, 3’30”)

Madam Potatoe (1983, 6’30”) -Random Persons episode 3 (1’00”, 2012) – https://vimeo.com/36471092

In the intermission Emma explained the rules of our animated Exquisite Corpses project, in which any member of London Animation Club can take part in this group project. I will be sending out the rules and specifications in an email soon.

Our second programme of films was of work which LAC members had brought along on the night:

Intro 1 (2012, 1’00”) by Stuart Pound

Intro 2 (2012, 1’00”) by Stuart Pound

Mallorca Pink Martini (2008, 3’38”) by Dennis Sisterson

Walk in Mallorca (2008, 1’15”) by Dennis Sisterson

These four films worked very well together as the filmmakers had taken live-action video and manipulated it kaleidoscopically in AfterEffects

 It’s Not So Bad – animatic (work in progress) by John Fryer and Sheila Jackson

This is a Flash animatic by Sheila from a poem by John which has been broadcast on the radio. As with most of their work it was a political satire. We hope to show the completed version very soon.

Mr Top Hat (2008, 5’00”) by Bianca Ansems

Bianca’s magnificent BA graduation film featuring a Victorian gentleman with a particularly tall top hat.

Emma Calder then closed the evening with three more of her Random Person films

Random Person episodes 19, 8 and 31 (2012)

Please subscribe to Emma’s YouTube and Vimeo channels and the Random Person pages on Facebook etc. The more views and interest the better. She might then be able to pay a small team to help. Please spread the word!

The links are. Many thanks to you all in advance.

 YouTube channelwww.youtube.com/user/pearlyoyster




It was a packed evening and this took us right up to 11pm.

Thank you to everyone who attended and made it such a fun evening and thank you to everyone who showed a film.