Tuesdays with “TIM”

It’s Tuesday, so that must mean it’s time to share some more behind-the-scenes tidbits with you about my short animated film TIM. My producing partner, Brian Joseph Ochab, and I were recently discussing the need to have a logo that would appropriately communicate the vibe we are trying to elicit with TIM. It needs to be fun, whimsical, and maintain a creepy Burtonesque vibe that the film itself will have. In essence, something that can be the public face of our project. So, I broke out my sketchbook and started conceptualizing!

When I begin the visual thought process, often a flurry of very loose doodles tumble out of my pencil. My hand just whirls around the paper blorping out whatever it wants in the search for the right idea. You’ve heard of someone’s hand having a mind of its own? Believe me, sometimes it’s a challenge to get my actual mind to coordinate with the hand. My hand can go off on its own like a teenager who is handed the keys to the car for the first time. In this case, the hand was exploring lots of things that just weren’t working. It spent several hours involved in this pursuit until one sketch fell onto the page that caused my actual mind to say “THAT’S IT!”

Tim Burton
This is the rough blue sketch of TIM that became an “eureka” moment.

After working out a more detailed pencil drawing, the next step was to create a nicely inked drawing. I do like inking by hand with brush on paper. I bought a really terrific brush pen a year or so ago and use it almost exclusively over my traditional paint brush/bottle of ink. It’s a Japanese brush pen sold by Pentel here in the States, and the ink in the cartridges is a nice solid and permanent black ink. That sucker really holds a point, too. Anyway, enough about my love for my brush pen. I also use permanent black ink pens like Microns or Prismacolor to supplement what the brush pen can’t do.

Tim Burton
The fully rendered Timothy Todd as he appears on our “TIM – The Movie” Facebook page.

So, Tim was hand-inked, then scanned into Photoshop for some coloring. In this case, I did a kind of digital airbrushing to bring little Timothy Todd to life. The final art has all kinds of potential applications. We already made it the face of our “TIM – the movie” Facebook page (come join us by clicking here!), he makes an appearance on a coffee mug in a video update we posted on our Kickstarter page, he’s in an ad on Stop Motion Magazine’s website, and he’ll pop up in other places as well. In fact, we believe that a version of this drawing will even be the special limited edition collector’s pin that we are offering as a reward on Kickstarter!

This image may also become a T-shirt down the line. Well, it IS a T-shirt now, but only a one-of-a-kind at the moment. Just this past Saturday, Plaxico the dog featured TIM on his website. (If you’d like to take a look, CLICK HERE!) We’d like to eventually make shirts down the road, but for now am concentrating on trying to actually get the film made! But, if we do make it a shirt, it would likely look something like this…

Tim Burton
The “TIM” logo reworked to be a cool white on black graphic!

So there you have it – the anatomy of logo creation. Come back again this THURSDAY where I’ll have a BONUS “Tuesdays with TIM” post for you. There was just too much to cram into one day!

And if you’d like to be a part of our film, come visit us at TIMtheMovie.com for more information!