2016 Bro

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GUYS. It has been a great start to the New Year. I hope you had a good January? Good grief it is now February. Oh wow. How how how how how how how how how how how how how SO. Let’s get started. You’re here so that I can show you stuff I’ve been doing? Oh, jolly nice. JOLLY JOLLY NICE. Before I begin, please note I post quite a bit of stuff on my Instagram page. So, if you’re looking for bits ‘n bobs, I’m fairly active there. Not so much on Facebook and Twitter.

1. iPad Sketches!

Jolly good. I never say Jolly Good in real life. I resurrected my old iPad Mini with a Jot Mini stylus and Procreate, and made some sketches on it. Look!

draw_on_ipad

2. Comic Jams

Lots of them! Oh, what a what a. Too many to post, loads on my Instagram account, so, a small gallery here:

3. Knysna-Plett Herald

You haven’t ‘arrived’ until you’ve been in the Knysna-Plett Herald newspaper. Look! I am reportdely and forevermore ‘THE KING OF KIFFNESS’. Yisss.

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4. Album!

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Guys, I flippen’ made a music album and it’s available on iTunes if you so wish to listen to it? Please do. What a nice hobby.

5. I was part of a GIF exhibition

What a nice idea! An exhibition where animated GIFs are projected on the walls and people stand around and look at them. Very nice. Very very nice. Here’s their Facebook page, if you’d like to connect. They’re in Cape Town.

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6. I came across some old portfolio items

Oh, amazing! Geepers, so much detail! Here, a gallery for you to peruse. Please do, please do.

Also, here’s my first animation I found on VHS cassette. HAH! Nice. I did this when I think I was like, 15 or something:

7. CTIAF – Cape Town International Animation Festival

ctiaf_website

Oh my goodness gracious it’s the first ever ‘Cape Town International Animation Festival’, previously known as ‘Kunjanimation’. AND IT’S TAKING PLACE THIS MONTH! IN CAPE TOWN! They’re getting International guest speakers, screening a whole bunch of amazing local and International animation, nice talks – really, this is the start of something amazing. I was pleased to be involved in the curating of the local content. Very nice.

8. Mike’s Universe

Oh ho ho! Why am I saying so many of these weird things? Anyways, Mike’s Universe was something I created back in 2002 at Rhodes University at about the same time as Bru & Boegie. I like it and I’ve pitched it in a music video competition. If it doesn’t win I’ll prob make a short like this sometime. A gallery – please, please.

9. Bru & Boegie

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Bru & Boegie. Oh how you have done me well. So, Bru & Boegie got into the Disney / Triggerfish Story Lab, so I am off to America on Saturday and spending the whole month in the US! First for the ‘Kidscreen’ animation conference taking place in Miami, then for 2 weeks with Disney in Burbank, LA (amazing) and then taking an exploratory 4-day road-trip with 2 friends from LA up to San Francisco. SO COOL. SO SO COOL. Amazingly I get to make a Bru & Boegie animated short with Disney. I can hardly process this much awesomeness.

I’ll take this opportunity to say thank you to anyone and everyone who’s supported me in any way these past few years – whether by commissioned work, or a friendly comment – thank you. Very kind. And if you’ve just enjoyed any of my work – what a treat. Thank you :)

BONUS: Here’s South African celebrity Danny K claiming that my brother Dave from ‘The Kiffness‘ is an A-List celebrity. Good one Danny.

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1

Story Lab, Vipassana, CartoonBrew

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Broose Boegiebox.

Hello. How are you? Nice? Oh ok. Well, that’s nice. Me? Oh, I’m just nice too thanks. Please – come inside, take your shoes off and sit on the kitchen floor while I ruminate on recent events.

So, I did the Triggerfish Storylab. I entered two projects, one of them being my 13-year old comic duo ‘Bru & Boegie’ and was able to pitch it as both a series and a film. Well, let me tell you, it was a flippen’ rad 2 weeks. Shoh.

So, Pilar Alessandra came from LA. She wrote this book ‘The Coffee Break Screen Writer’. It’s a great book that helps you to go through various exercises and questions to get to the meat and bones of your script. I read about half the book while I was in pre-production on Moosebox, Triggerfish had a copy I was borrowing. But, she came and talked to us for a week in the flesh. Man. That was awesome. We got to apply the exercises to our projects, wrote two pages of script that we read out in the class, and the whole thing was super interactive. So – great. I was amazed at how on the ball she was. Sometimes when someone would explain their story, I only have a limited amount of space in my brain for a few characters and what they’re doing when first hearing about a concept, so I skew towards easy-to-understand concepts where story and plot stuff doesn’t get too much in the way of what the essence of the thing is. However, she had a way of giving feedback that was really on point, in a way that she couldn’t have just been winging it. eg if someone said “My project is about a guy and another guy, but the one guy is from this other place and there’s a dragon who also knows this other girl who is involved with this guy, and the other friend of them who lives with the dragon’s friend, the other girl, all go about doing their thing is this place that’s similar to this other place that’s also like …” so I’m already going glassy-eyed and Pilar would say “Ok, so, maybe you could try x, y and z” and I’d be like “Yo. How’d you process that?”

Then, Orion Ross from Disney came to chat to us about series, and that too exceeded my hopes. He got very specific about stuff, we got to see some unreleased Disney stuff, and he kind of covered series specifics without being too particular to Disney which was cool. Also, very interactive – we each got to pitch each other’s characters which was a good exercise in seeing how universally translatable a character is. Then we went through various stages of pitching, and again he provided feedback on the spot and I think a lot of creators pulled their socks up after getting an honest opinion. In South Africa we’re sometimes terribly polite to one another and may not get to the heart of an issue even if we have potentially valuable feedback to offer. Well, I guess I speak for myself there, but I think having an industry person there like Orion with experience where superfluous niceties may not be in everybody’s interest was good.

Up Lion's Head in Cape Town with Orion and Ant Silverston, Kelly Dillon, Sarah Scrimgeour and Lucy Heavens.

Up Lion’s Head in Cape Town with Ant Silverston, me, Orion Ross, Kelly Dillon, and then behind us Sarah Scrimgeour and Lucy Heavens.

Ya. Good stuff. I think anyone who was there got an upskill in various areas whether they liked it or not. Would be great to get more people like Orion and Pilar over here to knock us into shape a bit and I think we’re hungry to learn too.

Triggerfish also put a bunch of us up in Claremont, in a flippen’ mansion. Yoh. There were 35 – 40 people at the Story Lab from all over Africa, so we got to meet lank cool peeps from Kenya, Zambia, a dude from Nigeria, Zim etc… Was great.

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Braai. Balcony at mansion. Yoh. Was an amazing spot.

Then, bro’s, I did this 10-day meditation retreat called ‘Vipassana‘. Yoh. What a thing. It’s a 10-day meditation retreat (this one was outside Cape Town in Worcester) where there’s ‘noble silence’ for 10 days, which means no talking to one another, no eye contact, no gesturing – no communication at all. Also, no books to read, no sketchbooks, no music – you’re there really to eat (2 meals per day, vegetarian, delicious), sleep (wake up at 4am, sleep at 9:30pm) and spend 10 days learning and practicing this meditation technique called ‘Vipassana’ which focuses on observing the body’s breath and observing sensations on the body – no hocus pocus really. Wow. Was amazing – tough, but mostly amazing. Halfway through day 1 I was like ‘ah geez, this is gonna be a flippen’ mal slow 10 days’ and sometimes it was. But, on the 9th day, I felt inner nibanic bliss – after sitting for hours and hours and hours during the previous days and experiencing gross bolidy sensations like a sore back, sore knees etc… all the pains melted away and it felt like my body was made of pure honey, and fluid (not solid at all). I kind of popped some tear-juice it felt so good. So, that was nice. But the aim of it isn’t to chase the high – it’s more about purifying the mind and releasing past ‘sankaras’ – deeply etched beliefs, cravings and aversions that don’t serve us any longer and only multiply our suffering by taking us away from the moment. Breaking the mind-body habit of just reacting to sensations like a little tickle on the nose or a fly landing on you, apparently helps to disassociate from reaction and see things more like how they really are. And to develop equanimity of mind. Better for me, better for others.

Pond at edge of Dhamma Pataka

Pond at edge of Dhamma Pataka.

Also, check this rad Moosebox pic Daniel Snaddon, co-director of Stick Man, drew for me :)

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Drawing by Dan Snaddon. Dig it :)

I did some storyboarding for Stick Man that premieres on BBC 1 on Christmas day at 4:45pm. It looks amazing. Seriously. Check this trailer:

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Kiss. Kiss. Kiss.

Ok, flip. Some other stuff. So, my bro had this whole social media dig with Telkom – he’d make something, they’d make something – it revolved around the talking baby TV ads from Telkom. I won’t lie, their dead eyes that don’t communicate what their mouths are are a bit unsettling. So, Nic Smal from Derick Watts & The Sunday Blues teamed up with my bro to bring you this. I filmed my mouth and comp’d it onto the baby:

We “love” you too, Telkom.Tried to watch Telkom’s response video to my campaign to stop their talking baby adverts, but then this happened…

Posted by The Kiffness on Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Then, I did this little teaser for my bro’s new track:

127 Boets Per Minute (TEASER)BOETS! 󾭞 Here’s a taste of our paamping new tjoen featuring one of our favourite boet rappers Jaco van der Merwe from Bittereinder. If you shmaak it, then laak it 󾮗Lekkaz.

Posted by The Kiffness on Friday, October 30, 2015

My bro and I also made this video of this matric who was interviewed on Carte Blanche about Matric Rage. Yoh, he made me lol. The video went viral and quickly got 100k views (now sitting on 160+k views). I’ve stopped believing that view count is any indicator of a successful video but this still kind of makes me laugh. You can momentarily see the gears turning in this guys head after he’s asked a question. He recovered like a champion. Greatness:

Thug MatricThis boet was asked on Carte Blanche tonight what Matric Rage meant to him. His response was thug-worthy.

Posted by The Kiffness on Sunday, December 6, 2015

Then I drew this pic for a colleague Ruan, who was dressed like this for his bachelor party:

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Look. Here’s some pics of Onion Boy! I hope we can still make an Onion Boy short or something. I dig Onion Boy and think he’s super endearing:

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Guys. I gotta say. Bru & Boegie got into Story Lab. So, I get a trip to Disney. I started writing this post before I knew, and now I know, so. That’s amazing. Here are the others in the series pool:

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So. If you’ve been following my work for an amount of time, you may know how close Bru & Boegie are to my heart. Like – very close. I started drawing Bru & Boegie comics in 2002 in my dorm room at Rhodes, when I was going through some mal stuff, and I made a commitment to continue doing Bru & Boegie throughout my life to just have *some* body of work with a golden thread when other stuff seemed like it was falling down around me. So, 13 years later, Bru & Boegie seems like it may be getting a thumbs up from The Universe or something. We shall see how this unfolds.

Bru & Boegie awaiting Story Lab announcements.

Bru & Boegie awaiting Story Lab announcements.

Also of note is that Bru & Boegie got a little ‘short of the day’ feature on CartoonBrew.com. Cartoon Brew is arguably the biggest / most-frequented animation sites on the net so any time I get something on there is a moment to pause and go ‘thaz really nys’.

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And, a Medical Chronicle cartoon about how expensive medical insurance is for doctors:

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A pic I drew to kickstart something for ‘Mike’s Universe’:

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Check – my dad has one of my pictures I drew when I was about 5 hanging on his wall in his office. I like it:

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Also, here’s my friend Luciana. She went under a bridge in Kirstenbosch gardens and looked for tadpoles. Drew a pic of her in her sketchbook. She’s just moved to San Francisco. Had a rad time exploring and general chillin’ with her:

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StoryLab!

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Howzit okes, whazzup. So, some good news! I managed to get Bru & Boegie into the Triggerfish StoryLab. What is it? Well, for a while now Triggerfish has been planning to upskill writers and creators in the South African animation sphere, so they partnered with the DTI and Disney and have raised R44 mil to invest into this project. There was a call for anyone with a valid African ID or passport to submit their movie or series idea, and out of the 1,378 submissions 35 were chosen. Bru & Boegie made the cut! As did another project I’m involved with called ‘Onion Boy’ headed up by Sarah Scrimgeour.

I pitched Bru & Boegie as a film and we pitched Onion Boy as a series. Stoked. So, we’re going to a 2-week workshop at Triggerfish that has Pilar Alessandra speaking, author of ‘The Coffee Break Screenwriter’ talking to us for a day, plus a talk by Orion Ross, VP of content for Disney EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa) after which where we’ll repitch our ideas, and if they get into the top 6, then we get some loot and that gets worked on for the next 9 – 18 months and with any luck becomes an animated movie or a fully-fledged series on Disney. There aren’t any promises, but it’s pretty exciting.

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Also, Moosebox has a cool little section on the new Triggerfish website:

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I just finished a short little Bru & Boegie animation last night and hopefully my bro will do cool music and sfx for it soon:

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