I’m really happy to finally finish a new multi-plane animation stand set up after two weeks of building, visiting hard ware stores, hunting for fabric and transporting heavy glass in a suitcase by bus. I thought some of you might be interested in its design and building process – I know I did a lot of googling during the process and it was great to see people’s own stands in detail.
Below is a time lapse video showing the building process, followed by detail shots with more information, and finally, I was inspired by this article to try to recreate a beautiful shot from Blade Runner on the stand, as a way to learn how to use the lighting on my new stand. In this test shot I am using simple paper cut-outs that are a bit rolled at the edges to pick up the light.
Multi-plane animation stand time lapse from Tess Martin on Vimeo.
As you can see from the time lapse video, after putting the shelf together and making sure it would work for my needs, I broke it down and spray painted the inside black to minimize the risk of reflections in the glass.
I purchased a special camera bracket originally designed for people to fasten an external flash to their camera. It’s called Falcon Eyes Camera Bracket TMB-16T, and I only used one of its two pieces. But it allows the camera to move forward and back a little bit (once longer bolts were purchased from my local hardware store). I can also easily move it up and down a good amount.
I purchased two LED clip lamps that throw a soft light, and 4 black Jansjo LED clip lights that are small enough to fit between the shelves. Since they’re clip lights, and the shelf unit is pretty stable and wide, I can just clip them to the stand itself. In this photo the second black clip light is covered by a piece of tracing paper to diffuse the light a little. The bottom-most layer has two able lamps pointing down, reflecting at white paper, though there is also an artograph lightbox under there which I can also use.
The whole corner set up with the Blade Runner cut-outs on the stand, and the curtains pulled back. In the time lapse video you can see what it looks like with the curtains pulled out and down, blocking out ambient light.
The still from the Rachel interview scene from Blade Runner that I wanted to try and capture on the stand.
The scene in cut-outs. Of course the design is very simple, and the paper used for the Rachel cut-outs was just printer paper, and turned out to be a bit too thin to handle the rolling at the edges. But a great learning experience, and I’m looking forward to playing with lighting some more.