“My Stop Motion Camp” – by Ezra!

Last summer, I went to a one-week stop motion animation camp at the Digital Arts Experience in White Plains. When I took my first ride there I felt a mix of excitement, curiosity, and nervousness. And when I sat down in a bright blue chair and saw what the place looked like, I felt even more nervous. The building was humongous, and everything about the inside was bright.  There were bright lights and bright neon chairs.  It looked very high-tech and grown up. I was the youngest kid there.

The Digital Arts Experience first day of Summer Camp.

The Digital Arts Experience first day of Summer Camp.

When the class began we were introduced to our teacher, Nick. Nick taught us how to make a basic stop motion animation with a penny. We used Logitech cameras and computer software called FrameByFrame to snap photos that were used to make the animations.  I worked with a partner named Will. First we animated ourselves for fun.  Then we did the basic penny animation. Afterward, we made what I call a “minimation,” an animation that lasts less than a minute, of two sugar packet “cars” crashing and a flash drive “police car” rescuing them.  By the end of the day, I didn’t feel nervous; in fact, I felt confident for the next day.  I had learned a lot in seven hours.

Stop Motion Animation with Legos in Westchester

The next day, I started to work on my Lego animation. At first, I was wondering what it should be about, but then I remembered the book I had written over the summer, The Equardonator.  It was about a kid who built a robot suit to wear and then stopped cyborg gorillas. I decided to make an animation about The Equardonator 2, about a pesky kid who tried to steal the skateboard trophy, and the Equardonator had to stop her. First, I made a basic sketch on paper.  Nick told me that since I was overflowing with ideas for what was going to happen, I should put them down on paper first. After that I made my custom minifigures to go with my animation. I worked on this for the next two days, and it was a success!  I even had one of my minifigures have a dream within the animation!

On my last day, I made a few minimations. I made Lego Eat Pizza, Lego Bank Robbery, Ultimate Lego Battle, Lego FOX Sports, and Lego Red Assassinate. Later that day, we presented the animations to our parents. I felt very proud of myself.  As I worked during the week, I became more and more confident of my skills, and less intimidated and nervous.  This was my favorite week of camp over the summer, even though it was at the very end.

Since camp ended, my parents have bought me my own Logitech camera to make more animations and minimations. I have started a Youtube channel, and I have posted my animations on my channel, which is called The Lego Detective.  If you want to see my animations and minimations again, you can!

Interested in joining The Digital Arts Experience’s Summer Tech Camps for 2014? Check out our website and video below for more information! www.TheDAE.com.