We are so chuffed at all the recent donations of items and support for our little studio that we just wanted to share the news with everyone. Some remarkable and generous souls have been doing a bit of a early spring clean and sorting out their homes and have kindly thought of our studio to donate to. We have also had some gifts of money which has helped to pay for some essential items, as well as help physical help moving studio and getting things fixed up.
It has been an epic journey and we wanted to do aBIG SHOUT OUT to say a MASSIVE THANXfor thinking of our little Studio. Everything donated has been in excellent working condition.
Special Thanks to these STARs of the Show:
The Hannah Family for helping with packing, moving driving, unpacking, fixing stuff up and sourcing out bargains for stuff we really needed. Your support and help has been invaluable I can’t express how much this has meant to us and our little studio. Also for the excellent coffee maker and kettle … we needed this so much on the move! The sofas for our gaming room and the breakfast bar and cupboards. All AMAZING!
Ginger’s other half – for putting up with Ginger being bossy and all your invaluable help with the packing and moving and unpacking.
The Hopkins Family – Special Thanks to Asa, Romy and Lois for donating a collection of comic books, a swivel chair and loads of Nintendo DS games and handhelds.
Artist John King for loads of retro tech and a massive dreamy executive desk and chair (for the office)
Kate and Dylan Kift for shelves and multicolored drawers. Invaluable so much stuff to store and to still be accessible for students.
#Three … is one of the many fantastic collaborations with Jack and James aka Jamwinga. Jack charted loads on many of the Guitar Hero and Rock Band games. Give him a plastic guitar and he oozes talent. This is a really fun video with these guys. Made when we back in the Old Headmasters Office at West Studios in 2018.
Carrying on our Showcasing here is one of our Favs …
“Metal Slug 5 – Speeder” charted and performed on Clone Hero by Jack Holleworth.
When it comes to finding a great gaming tune from one of his favourite games and then making a chart on Clone Hero; Jack is pretty good at this, even though he might say he isn’t. This particular chart has had a lot of interest on Youtube from other Clone Hero fans, who have requested the chart and asked for it to be charted for Drums, Bass and Rhythm Guitar.
A snappy tune. Great Chart. Check it out LOUD!! And Enjoy!
We thought a it would be a fab idea to showcase some of our Students work from over the years that our Studio has been established.
So here we go … #One
‘ … oops misheard!’ – Created by Daniel L. 2019
This is a very, very funny little claymation video which Daniel created as part of his work experience project from Ashgate School in Chesterfield.
“When asked to fetch something Bunny gets it wrong”.
Brilliantly fun models capture the comedy and brightness of this claymation. Daniel made the models by hand from Clay and Wire. He wrote the script, animated the characters and did all his own voice over. We love this video. Check it out below …
For all those who have not received the e-postcard sent out earlier. We are absolutely delighted to announce that today we have officially moved to our New Studio our new address is: 2nd Floor, 8 Church Way, Chesterfield, S40 1XJ.
We have tried to keep the location under wraps for a while although some of you guys sussed it out.
Our New Studio is amazing. Over the next week or so I will be adding some photos to our social network. We are so hoping that we will be open again soon once Covid restrictions are lowered.
In the meantime guys #staysafe #weshyerhands #keep your distance
Phew! September already! What an amazing couple of months since we returned after Lockdown to the Studio. It has been a fun time getting back into things and we have welcomed back a huge portion of our students.
Many of our students have managed to finish off a few older projects and others have begun a few new ones. All are getting back into telling and creating new stories. Check out some of the newest videos below.
From the Principles of Animations by young animator Oscar…
… to Crazy Editing of ‘Lockdown Experiences’ by Hamish
and Kristian’s Regular VLOG
… to lots of Broadcasting and Production, 3D Digital Modelling Creation, Games Design and Development, Filming for mini films and Animation to Concept and Digital Poster Art from all our other students. It has been a busy few months! Check out the gallery below…
On a super serious note the UK Government has updated their guidelines recently and our Studio has been keeping up to date with the ongoing Covid-19 situation and constantly monitoring our policy and procedures, increasing certain aspects of our procedures to ensure the safety of our students and team. You can check out our latest procedures here. https://sparkyink.co.uk/covid-19
We have recently started up a NEW workshop aimed at young people aged 14 to 17 years who are looking to create a portfolio in Games Design and Development. This will be the whole package. From idea, creative script writing, to concept art and environments and 3D Modelling to animation. Using coding and game building in the GameMaker Studio 2 engine, to editing, sound FX and publishing. As well as exciting extras. Students may start at different areas of the GDD process. The idea is to have a portfolio of documented work and a few demo games. This portfolio can be used for further education applications or to look back on as a guide to work from at home. We will encourage a digital portfolio with a mini website which can be monitored from the studio.
The places are limited for this workshop. However, we will be making a waiting list with a view to running more sessions in the future or during holidays or online.
It is hoped that in the near future we will be able to offer the Arts Award qualification for this workshop.
As promised we are experimenting with our Gaming Events to try and get the guys back together on a regular basis. We are still struggling at the moment for our Mini-Gamers. However we are looking at offering some FREE online sessions via Discord for these guys to get together. Should be load of fun and those who can game with us can and those who cannot – well they have voices they can encourage their chums. Our 16+ gaming nite will begin up again (all being well in October) Our 16+ group is much smaller so this can be managed well in the studio. We have now published the events on our Event Bright Page. Please check these out.
During last summer’s mini heatwave. Our Studio worked with five talented students from various schools in the local area, to create a promotional video with music and clay-mation for the Derbyshire Education & Business Partnership (DEBP).
The project had it’s challenges from clay melting, students melting, software crashing and equipment not compiling. The project ran for one morning a week for 8 weeks so was very demanding on scheduling production and filming. However, we all had great fun working together on the project and there is a great result of the video which is now on the DEBP’s new website .
Post-production was the more difficult part with availability of students to return to complete various pieces, voice overs and extra artwork. We did however manage to get a game in the video, which one of the Students – Dylan, had been working on as an extra piece.
All in all we are all very pleased with the result. You can check it out now on our YouTube channel
The members of the team who worked on this are:
Clay models & Animator – Daniel Laughton
Camera Operator – Nathan Pidd
End Credits Music & Ideas – Logan Pinder
Co-Director & Concept Art – Logan Tattersall
Game Design & Development – Dylan Kift
Voice Overs: Laura Wilkins & David Shephard
Production Support: Josh Wright & Carl Laughton
Project Coordinator & Post Production: Jm Wright
Special THANKS to these artists for sharing their music
Phew! Our first month after lockdown is nearly over and it has been quite an experience. Firstly Thank you’ to everyone who has supported our Studio over the last month. We are so glad to be back and very happy that the changes we have made to help keep our studio #Safe are proving effective and are being observed by all our students.
So far so good…
Many of our students have returned to the Studio and it has been an engaging month with everyone excited to get back into things, start some new projects and enjoy some social distanced gaming too.
All the stickers and hazard tape are still stuck down on the carpets and we still have plenty of soap and toilet rolls! yippee!
We are actually finding the layout much better and splitting our animation area and gaming/production area has proved to be a success.
During lockdown we were given some cash to purchase some new equipment and so far we have managed to buy some pretty cool camera gear including a monitor and a shoulder rig.
We are also in the process of purchasing a new Gaming PC, (we usually buy secondhand and two of our PCs have just about given up) a Playstation 4 and VR set. These are going to be so much fun.
More on this next time.
Rebooting the studio has seen a staggered return of many of our regulars all with lots of stories to share. Rebooting anything can take a bit of time so we are not completely there just yet ,as not everyone has managed to return and we have not been able to run some sessions yet nethertheless we are working on it. We’re pacing ourselves, to ensure all our guys have a fab experience as they return.
Lockdown has filled the team’s head with loads of great ideas and we will be sharing the new things we are hoping to start up in the near future. One of the things we are considering is to start up a few New Animation workshops aimed at those who prefer early eveningor workshops especially for families. If you would like to know more about these please contact email@example.com.
We hope to reboot: ‘That Saturday Morning Games Design and Development/Animation Thingy’ . The sessions will be a little different, as we are unable to take as many learners in as we did before due to covid-19. We will be creating additional session/s in the afternoon. Please check our Facebook page for more info. We will be giving first refusals to learners who have projects already underway.
Controllers at the ready – ‘Thumb Defining’ configurations are being planned for the very near future. We know it has been a long stretch for our regular 8-bit evolved gamers. The light at the end of the tunnel is getting nearer.
We have had so many enquiries about when our gaming sessions will start up again. so we are currently discussing the best way to do this. We will try to update this very soon as we would love to run an event in August.
Moreexcitement for Thumbs is that we are hoping to set up some new sessions for different groups. From Tournament style to Ladies only. Retro to Vintage gaming group. Yeah… You heard it first here!
Interested – why would you not be? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to register your Thumbs!
Dates for your Diary (all being well):
From August/September on wards:Return of: ‘That Saturday Morning Games Design and Development/Animation Thingy’
Monday 31st August 2020:Return of: ‘The Bank Holiday’… Studio will remain open on this day.
Monday 28th September 2020: Studio Annual Shutdown for 1 week. We Return on Monday 6th October 2020
Please remember that if you, or someone in your family home or someone you have been with recently has symptoms of Covid-19 you will need to isolate as outlined by the Government and NHS.UK. If in doubt check with the NHS to find out what you need to do: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/ about a Covid-19 test.
Wow how time flies! Sparky Ink started back in 2012 yet it wasn’t until 2016 that the plunge was taken to create a full working studio. These last four years have been very realistic, sometimes scary yet amazingly great fun.
It has been a gigantic extraordinarily arms in the air roller coaster ride, and at times not for the faint-hearted.
Here we are though, proudly getting ready to walk into our 5th year! Covid-19 has slowed us down… a little bit, though it hasn’t stopped us.
We just want to take this chance to say a massive Thank you to all our students who are the most amazing people you could ever hope to meet and to everyone who has supported us and worked with us and understood us over the last 4 years. You guys are treasures.
We are really pleased to announce that Sparky Ink Studio will be re-opening on Monday 6th July. The opening will officially be for weekday workshop students only, to start with, although we are hoping that we can slowly introduce some of our other sessions back too.
Phew! We have been working hard to get the studio ready for all our students to return as they feel ready to do so. We’ve never seen so much hand gel sanitizer! 😀
Things are looking good, this doesn’t mean though that we are not taking things extremely seriously. We know the need to ensure we follow the social distancing, hand washing and masked face rules, while we are in studio and although things will be different and new for a while, we will all eventually get used to the new changes.
We have spent lots of time changing the studio around to accommodate the need for this and have purchased extra safety protective equipment that can help us in our day to day running of the studio. We are so looking forward to seeing all our students back and unleashing our creativity into some new projects. Speaking of which, we have some great things lined up too for the coming summer months, and we will be making some announcements soon, once we are settled back. 🙂