The Shipping Forecast

The Shipping Forecast  (short experimental animation)

Lying bed unable to sleep - the shipping forecast is on the radio.

The Shipping Forecast from Ed Foster on Vimeo.

Directed, sound design by Ed Foster.
Additional sound elements by Alexander Ellerington.
Shipping Forecast recording from BBC Radio.

Teaser reel of studio directing pieces

A new little reel

A few of the more recent projects I am involved as director, just a taste as some are not yet available for public consumption. clips from Little Princess Series, Dave Spud pilot and Buddy & Elvis pilot.

While you were sleeping

Recently hosted a kids pixelation workshop for 'Film Club Chorleywood'. Inspired me to keep going - this piece is pixelation and a little time lapse.

My Rubbish Pets 'Mr George Dog'

My 'Rubbish Pets' series of mock up books has been languishing aimlessly on my shelf for about six years (further story's examples to be found in the 'Doodle' section of blog - under the title Dumb Pets). The story is a little threadbare and with more holes than my favourite socks, but I wanted to get my head around the latest version of After Effects - so downloaded the free trial and used the story to give me a focus. Here is 'Mr George Dog'. 

It has taught me that my vocal efforts are akin to Katie Price, that any type should kept big or it goes all fuzzy when uploaded - and that there are an awful lot of compression codecs out there -and that I still love After Effects.

Dave Spud

The Rubbish World Of Dave Spud

the pitch...
"No matter how rubbish things get for Dave, there is always room for them to get worse...

The archetypal underdog, the fighter against the odds, the dead pan comedy voice...

Some stills taken from development 'Bible' and pilot for DAVE SPUD.

It's never long before the world starts to misbehave around Dave. No matter how ordinary his day may have begun, events frequently take a peculiar and surreal twist. When things go awry for Dave (and they do), Dave has to use every one of his average abilities to the heroic max (I use the term 'heroic' loosely) if he is to triumph at these adventures and restore normality* in time for tea. Or there WILL be trouble!

* as normal as it can be in the world of Spud

Developed at Illuminated Films...Here is the pilot:

DAVE SPUD from Ed Foster on Vimeo. Copyright Ed Foster/Illumated Films 2014
Fuzzypeg - flea ridden mutt with one good eye, found in a bin. Dave loves him.
The atmosphere is made up of layers of Jelly & Nuts 
Gravity begins to take hold of Dave Spud...

Little Princess Series

I have directed I believe 102 episodes of Little Princess, thats three series with two further 20 min specials. Quite a few then! A push to get it all done and delivered on schedule - but it was a really fun series to be involved in, as there was a lot creative freedom and such a brilliant team, many of whom have become close friends. Iain as producer allowed a lot of freedom when choosing a cast and led to some interesting, yet I believe, well suited choices of Julian Clary, Jane Horrocks and Brian Blessed. A wonderful script writing team and plenty of ad libs in the record sessions allowed the stories to have a sense of mischief whilst trying hard to avoid to many cliches and typical do-gooder series stereotypes.

'I Want A Swing' has been viewed to date by five and half million people on youtube. I suspect this has more to do with a misunderstanding of the title and content by folks seeking something altogether different. oo-er missus!

Rubbish picnic! and probably my favourite scene from the series

'I Want to be Tall' - who knew compost and poo can make grow taller. Another fav.

'I Want a Gymkhana'  - The general has a blow out.

'I Want to Go To Space'  - Voiced by the ever barking Brian Blessed as Unkle Walter & Jane Horrocks as Grt Aunty "Got any Macaroons!"

Little Princess - as part of the Milkshake 'My first concert' tour. not a fan of 'Noddy' so glad he's cut off.
Brian Blessed (voice of Uncle Walter) strangles the LP merchandise 

Awards and other Gumph

Little Princess episode 'I Want to Whistle' picked up the 'Gold Cairo' award for best TV show at the Cairo International Film Festival For Children 2007 and 'I Don't Want To Go To Bed' episode won 'Best TV film' award at the Tehran International Film Festival 2007. 'I want My Snail' episode took Best television series at Stuttgart Animation festival. Little Princess was also nominated for the best Preschool series at BAFTA at least three times (it might be four but I have a rubbish memory) and nominated twice at the 2008 British Animation Awards (BAA'S), and has now been sold to over 160 territories worldwide.

Harold & Mabel

Harold & Mabel 'Watch Television'.
Animation short. Bits of charity shop dolls, a lot of wool and images cut out of magazines created the over stuffed duo - who then suffered the indignity of being stitched to a minture sofa to keep them secure (an old crapston villa's prop). Deliberately limited (this was my first proper attempt at 3D model animation) there was supposed to be dialogue (hence the lipsync) however the record tape snapped so I introduced subtitles instead, a happy accident. To make the cat jitter, I would hit it every frame with wooden knitting needle! And turn spot lamps on and off to suggest a television flicker. Aardman liked it enough to feature the piece on their directors commercial reel alongside my other short Anna Spud

The iris down is on a picture of Nana Mouskouri and harry Belafonte.

Pensioner Penny

The grumpy pensioner based short was shot using b/w film stock on an old rostrum camera and edited on an old Steenbeck.Pensioner Penny won best animation at Royal Television awards & Glasgow's 'Reel to Reel' film Festival. I still love this character and her muppety mouth and dead pan demeanour, remaining a theme I keep revisiting in my work, included in both animated shorts Anna Spud and the development offspring The Rubbish World of DAVE SPUD.

Idea Sketches for Penny

Cat Music

Animated musical short Cat Music. Created by photographing home made puppets from different angles then piecing it all together in after effects. Music composed by Alexander Ellerington. With their logo added - MTV used this as an ident on their MTV Europe channel as a promotional sting. 

Buddy & Elvis

For the Illuminated Film company I directed the pilot for Buddy & Elvis. Based on the books written by Andrew Murray and Illustrated by Nicola Slater (published by Macmillan Children's Books). The original pilot features the vocal talent of Reece Shearsmith (League of Gentlemen) as Elvis and Mark Benton (Nationwide ads, Early Doors) as BuddyThe pilot won 'best Pilot' at the Pulcinella Awards/Cartoons on the Bay

UPDATE 2012 news - this project has taken on some interesting twists and turns and things are moving forward at apace in new and some unusual directions. Further development of this project include new scripts from Jon Foster and James Lamont, the writers on 'Gumball', to reflect a revised concept and target audience, re-designs and five new animated sketches.  

The original pilot kind of fell between two stools, with a younger visual than the narrative and pacing suggested, but it's still fun and you can watch this 'original'  Buddy & Elvis pilot here:



Animated short completed whilst at the NFTS film school. I was very fortunate to be able create a wonderful cast list that included Terry Wogan, Morwenna Banks, Pam Ferris, Jim Broadbent and barking and the truly wonderful Liz Smith. ANNA SPUD is very much an offspring from previous short PENSIONER PENNY and also inspiration for current television series proposed DAVE SPUD

Awards and other Gumph

Finalist at the Royal Television Awards and British Animation Awards (The BAA'S), Anna Spud went on to pick up best animation at the Chichester International Film Festival as well as a commendation & special mention at the learning on Screen awards and MECAL film festival at Barcelona respectively. Anna Spud screened onboard Virgin Atlantic Planes as a finalist of the Virgin Atlantic/NFTS Film festival.