Daniel Greaves

Daniel Greaves is an award winning animation director and friend of the course. We asked him about his career and process. His latest film Big Bag has been a great success on the festival circuit. You can see Daniel's work on his website here.

Big Bag by Daniel Greaves

Big Bag by Daniel Greaves

What do you think the most important quality or qualities an animator should have?
Drawing abilities, originality, timing, compositional skills, and an understanding of design.

What’s the most difficult animated scene or action you’ve had to tackle?
In 'Manipulation’ - holding both hands in place for several hours over a rostrum camera table, and only moving them incrementally while an assistant changed the drawings each time : back breaking and cramp in the fingers.

What’s the best part of the creative process?
Conceptualising the basic idea, and then putting it to the test.

What is the most difficult part of the creative process?
Getting all the various aspects of the film making process to compliment and balance each other, so the film works effortlessly.

Do you choose the animation medium (CG, stop mo or 2D) based on the concept or a desire to challenge yourself?
Both, although now I don’t feel the urge to try new techniques so much, as I’m enjoying drawing and animating full time again.

What animation challenge do you still have to conquer?
Every unique idea is a challenge in itself. Also, directing a feature film (just the one!) is a temptation, but only if it is a great and inspiring story with originality. Having said that, I have so many ideas for short films, and if I committed to a feature, I would greatly miss the experience of short film making, which I often equate to the freshness and energy of a sketchbook, whereas the feature is like a meticulously crafted oil painting, and can lose it’s way in terms of it’s original purpose and individuality. Sketchbooks are often more exciting, personal and thought provoking than beautifully executed paintings.