You’ll Be “Bugging” Out Over These Stop Motion Films!

There are a lot of creative stop motion videos out there, but Ladislas Starevich’s addition to the animation world is absolutely “buggy.” The inventive Russian filmmaker was an expert in puppet animation in the early 1900s. He became interested in filming nocturnal stag beetles, but when he put them under film lights, they refused to move. So, to complete his vision, he decided to shoot dead insects instead. He replaced their legs with wire, which he repositioned frame by frame to make the bugs “move.”

The filmmaker was born Władysław Starewicz in Moscow, Russia on August 8th, 1882. Today, he is known by many different names and spellings including Starevitch, Starewich and Starewitch. In 1911, he began working with the film company of Aleksandr Khanzhonkov. He made two dozen stop motion films there, including the first ever puppet-animated film “The Beautiful Leukanida” (1910), using the bodies of beetles, which earned international acclaim. One British reviewer was even tricked into thinking the stars were live trained insects! This film is currently considered lost. Starevich’s “The Ant and the Grasshopper” (1911), seen above, got him decorated by the Czar. Considered the best-known film of this period and perhaps of his entire career is “The Cameraman’s Revenge” (1912). The stop motion video incorporates themes of infidelity and jealousy among its dead insect stars. Creepy!

After the October Revolution of 1917, Starevich and his family fled from Moscow to Paris. They formed a film company there in French illusionist and filmmaker Georges Méliès' old studio. It was around this time that Władysław Starewicz changed his name to Ladislas Starevich because it was easier to pronounce in French. He only made one animated film for this studio, called “The Scarecrow,” before moving on.

Starevich filmed “The Tale of the Fox” from 1929-1930, adding a soundtrack before its eventual premiere in 1937. The film, his first animated feature, is known as some of his best work. It was the third animated feature film to have sound, after Quirino Cristiani's “Peludópolis” (1931) and “The New Gulliver” (1935) from the Soviet Union. He was revolutionary in that he introduced sound and color into his puppet films as soon as they were available. Starevich also kept every puppet he ever made and reused them as supporting characters in his other films.

Ladislas Starevich died on February 26th, 1965. He was working on a film entitled “Comme chien et chat” (Like Dog and Cat). It remains unfinished out of respect for his incredible film legacy.

Don’t Have a Movie? Make One Yourself!

Drew Jamieson and his students originally decided to use iStopMotion to create a movie. After they read a book in class for their read-aloud period, the class normally watches the movie that goes along with it. When they realized there was no movie for their most recent book, Abel’s Island, they decided to make one themselves.

A fellow teacher at JP Robarts PS in London, ON, showed Drew iStopMotion, and he knew that it would be the perfect program for his class to create their movie replica of Abel’s Island. From that point forward, the class was hooked, and iStopMotion became a staple in Drew’s classroom.

The team worked with iStopMotion again when they made Claymation videos for Remembrance Day. These videos were shared at the school’s Remembrance Day ceremony.

It was quite touching,” Drew says of the videos. “We are really proud.

Most recently, Drew and his students created short iStopMotion videos for Valentine’s Day.

This was an art project, and the kids were given a lot of creative freedom,” he says. “Basically, they were asked to create something connected to Valentine’s Day using the program. They spent about twenty minutes brainstorming different ideas, and then they set to work. Students used everything from markers and construction paper to clay and math manipulatives. Each group produced a video that was in the range of ten to thirty seconds. A lot of them also added Valentine’s Day music to their clips.

The class has certainly learned from their iStopMotion experiences, and they’ve gathered a lot of tips for beginners. Drew suggests setting a chunk of time aside, probably an hour or more, making a bunch of supplies available, and letting the kids play.

They will figure out the program very quickly, and what they will be creating within that first hour will be very impressive,” he says. “Once they’ve had a good, long, unstructured chance to play with the program, then they will be ready to use it as a tool for learning.

Drew is a huge advocate of using technology in the classroom. He says that the class loves iStopMotion, and they’ve used it in language, art and history so far. Other than iStopMotion, the students use Twitter to share their work and to communicate with parents, Socrative for quizzes and exit tickets, DailyMeet to share their thoughts, Linoit for sharing their work, ClassDojo for behavior management, Google Drive for collaboration, Edmodo for after-school assignments, KidBlog for blogging, YouTube for sharing, and many, many more programs that add a unique feel to the classroom.

Technology allows for greater engagement with students,” Drew says. “As long as it is used wisely, it can be a great tool to facilitate learning.

Drew and his students plan to use iStopMotion again with their upcoming Human Organ System lesson. Drew believes that demonstrating how human organs work seems like the perfect topic to use iStopMotion with. We couldn’t agree more! We wish the best of luck to Drew and the team at JP Robarts PS, and we’re looking forward to “picking their brains” when they’re done learning about the human organ system!

How To Create iOS 7 Icon

Hello? Is this on? Yes? Very good.

Hello! We at Boinx Labs, we solve many problem, like warp drive, world hunger and iOS 7 icon.

I want to show how we create iOS 7 icon. Is very sophisticated process, so wear safety goggles, very important!

iStopMotion for iPad 2.3 and iStopMotion Remote Camera 2.3 have the new icons and other user interface tweaks for iOS 7 and are now available from the App Store.

Yours truly,

Dr. Term T. Bowman, Ph.D. Senior Director of iOS 7 Icon Design

(Editor’s Note: The Designers asked us to tell you that this is not actually how iOS 7 icons are designed. The real process is much more sophisticated. ;-)

Star Wars: The Lego Strikes Back

When it comes to animations about Star Wars, you’re going to Obi-“Wanna” use iStopMotion! At least, that’s what Brandon Warhurst decided to do when he put together his Auld Lang Syne Lego Star Wars stop motion animation. We love Brickfilms (AKA animations made using Lego figures) here at Boinx and this one definitely sent our interests into another galaxy!

Brandon made his film with a white paper backdrop, some less than ideal lighting (he makes it work!) and iStopMotion. He added special effects with some other tools, but the bulk of the work was done using iStopMotion. He also lends his singing voice to the track for a unique addition to the film.

It is AMAZINGLY easy to turn out stuff like this with iStopMotion,” Brandon says. “In fact, it was excellent for syncing the sound too as I could count frames to get the sounds JUST where I needed them.

One Man’s Trash is, Well … Another Fish’s Trash, Too

When you litter, what do you think happens to your trash? “The Great Garbage Trip” shows us exactly what, in a beautifully done iStopMotion video. It’s an animation about the huge amount of plastic waste in the sea and its consequences.

The video was created by Gaia Codoni during studies in the field of Scientific Visualization at the Zurich University of Arts. The only materials used were pastel-colored paper, strings and of course, a little bit of perseverance. It was inspired by the style of the great Italian artist Emanuele Luzzati. Gaia’s iStopMotion animation has been so successful that it was displayed in 2012 at the Museum für Gestaltung Zurich in the exhibition “Endstation Meer.” Gaia loved using iStopMotion to help with the project because it was “easy and effective … a winning mix!”

We know that the anticipation is probably killing you, so we won’t spoil any more of the video for you … just take a look! To check out more of Gaia’s work, check out