60 Second Transformation Challenge

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I'm jumping the gun, since people are starting to drift already...

I've been in touch with an Animation teacher at a design school. I asked how we could help her.
She said her students struggle to find music for their projects.

One project is a 60 second "Transformation".
There needs to be a 5-10 second intro for credits. I don't know if that's before the 60 seconds, or part of it.
The transformation hasn't been assigned yet. I don't know if it's from one emotion to another, or a shape shift, growth, or character interaction.

The challenge is write a 60-70 second piece of music that fits the theme. Probably better if it's instrumental, but you never know.

All the sounds HAVE to be copyright free. (So no pirated Beyoncé samples, etc). The students need Creative Commons License to use your music.

In addition, there may be cases where the Students are looking for specific, short music. If you want the challenge of scoring a short piece of animation, and can do it in a week, add your name here. You may get an email some time between now and November asking for help!

I'll add more info when I get it.

VERIFIED (Email address sent to Ava)
@Fuzzy @sph @helen @lowhum @pearlmanhattan @musicsongwriter @Tim Fatchen @Roddy @tcelliott @iveg @spingo @Mt.Mélodie @Peter Arvidson

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Because my DAW doesn't tell me how much time has passed: BPM x bars/beat = bars/ minute. 1/6 of that for title credits.
Ie 120 BPM w a 4/4 beat = 30 bars, 5 bar intro.

Holy moly this sounds great!

sph's picture

Very tempting!

I'm definitely up for writing something. I'm also keen on the idea of scoring a piece of animation and would usually be able to do it in a week, but couldn't guarantee that, depending on the week. I would be willing to either commit or back out quickly when I received the email, but if that's not going to work for them, I'd prefer to bow out of that side of things, rather than over-promise and let folks down.

I'm in - do you mean scoring like a music score (sheet music) or recorded music based on the video?

I would enjoy this. Count me in! Smile

I am interested. Would be great experience to add to my portfolio.

I'm interested. Very inspiring opportunity. Thank you @iveg. Just to check whether there will be attribution to our music: the movie makers will be post the credit to the composer of the music. I think creative commons can be understood in different ways so would be nice to make sure if that's ok. I'm too interested to know if it's about the recording or the actual score.

@helen Totally understandable. I know that FAWMers and 5090-ers can come up with some amazing music on short notice. I'm also aware we all have lives.
@lowhum Recorded music based on their animation or a short write-up of what they hope will happen at various cues.
@pearlmanhattan That's what I said Smile
@musicsongwriter Yes. There will be attribution. They will credit the composer/ musician.

Thank you for answering @iveg looking forward to participating.

Thank you @musicsongwriter Nadia for that question, i don't have to ask it meself!!:D Yes, I'll throw in too , even though I don't usually do CC stuff.

@Tim Fatchen you are very welcome Tim. Always good to check.

This is very good. Please count me in.

I would be happy to!

It will be wonderful to hear the fruits of these collaborations even if the results come after 50/90.

@Fuzzy @sph @helen @lowhum @Peter Arvidson @pearlmanhattan @musicsongwriter @Tim Fatchen @Roddy @kahlo2013

Ava has talked to the other faculty & tutors - I have sent you an email, so I can put a list together.

If there's anyone else, contact me directly (Click on my user name, press contact, and send me a short email so I know you're interested)

@iveg Did I understand you correctly that you sent your email to us? Just checked my emails and I don't have any from you, checked my spam folder too as I know sometimes messages end up there.

same as Musicsongwriter - I sent you a message through here - sometimes things bounce like a beachball for no reason.

Yes, I sent a short email to each of you. Guessing something's up with the contact sub program. I have contact from Tim F and Pearl M. Will try you again, Nadia.

I didn't get it either, but I did receive an email from another 50/90 member today, so I'm not sure it's the site.

sph's picture

Same here as the others.

I didn't get it either.

Sent you a message via the contact form, iVeg

@helen, @tcelliott got you. I'm guessing NONE of my originals went through. And maybe people have replied and they haven't gone through.

Basically, I just need email addresses, so people can contact us directly. If I haven't heard from you by Friday, I'll try again, AND post a message on your Soundboard.

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For practice, and to build up a song bank, I'm going to start writing 60-70 second songs, with the format "From [x] to [y]". I think I'll start with the basic emotions - happy, sad, anger, fear, disgust, surprise. [I know it's hard to sustain surprise, so I'll have to experiment]. If I'm doing my math right, that's 30 possible songs. That should keep me busy for quite a while.

@iveg no message came from you, I've sent you my pm with my email address. Hope you'll get it. If not we can all write private notices on your board with our email addresses. Just let us know.

@sph @musicsongwriter got you.
I tried Fear to Happy. *32831

I sent you an IM iveg. Hopefully that went through...

@helen Yes. You're good!

Just sent you my email address, @iveg.

@Fuzzy You're good!

I'm basically making these anyway, so I'm in!

If it's not to late to join @iveg, I would be very interested to do this.

@spingo Got you!
@Mt.Mélodie Send me a private message or a contact with your email so I can pass it on.

I sent our contact info to Ava. I'm hoping she can give us links to some previous assignments, so we can get a better idea of what's needed, and get inspired.

Wow! You guys are really keen! I've sent the link to the forum on to my department and had a chat with one of the game art tutors and they have a need for copyright free sounds as well, so there's the possibility of that in there as well. They'd need music loops specifically, and they do have some assignments close to finishing in the next week or two, so you might get called on sooner rather than later.


From about the 10 second mark you can see some (really short) examples of different types of animations - this isn't my class but it gives a greater range of what ideas students come up with. They could be physical or emotional transformations, usually towards the positive side of things - they're typically about a hero finding their inner strength and courage to defeat the bad guy. This video also shows some of the other animations that students do, so it's just not a theme of transformation.

I've attached a few from my class. These are around transformation though there could be others in the future that will have a different criteria.


Wow, there's some great animation there!

Here's a student animatic [animated storyboard]. It tells the main story, but isn't the final animation.

Ava says for her students, you'll probably be working from a storyboard. They need the music for the animatic. I'll try to get some sample storyboards.
She said from other classes you may be working from storyboard, animatic, or the rough animation.

Just letting you know, I will be off the grid for the next few days but back Sunday, so if they contact me, it will be Sunday before I reply.

Thanks. They have the link for this thread.

HBrook https://drive.google.com/open?id=1H3s6ByjYB0YqK0tL8OQ7fZm42qFfoL9O This is same person as animatic.
Jake https://drive.google.com/open?id=1S3YQeWO4X7KNGgof2EUPRXQu877rYHGG
JTruscott https://drive.google.com/open?id=1qJbMm79vl7KIkG4WVC7RevyxM7Kvfaaf
SSingleton https://drive.google.com/open?id=1gJ7GNABOA40pp0jgs9BI3qn2qMFSMQ1r
VHunter https://drive.google.com/open?id=137Ge1TH_9bo1KX43_Rc_g32DCIo70Mbr

AVA SAYS: "... sometimes the animatic changes a lot from the storyboard. I give them feedback on ways to make it better so it's an iterative process."

https://vimeo.com/34973892 National Film Board of Canada master talk about making music for animation

My takeaways:
1. The ANIMATOR determines pace. He was using 60 BPM as the base for all the music. "Chair" = 1 action/ sec, "table" = 2/sec (8th notes) "regular" 3/sec (triplets) and "pitter-patter" 4/sec (16th notes)
2. "Temp love". Animator uses favorite recording as a temporary soundtrack. It's a 2 edged sword. Great way to communicate what they like/ want and the emotion or feeling they want. Danger = animator gets stuck on that recording.
3. Have a spotting session: where to start, where to stop, desired emotion, point of view. Take notes/ email.
4. You want to do music very late in the process, when they've finalized actions.
5. Themes and variations - common and easy technique for animation (esp with a series)
6. Writing music for animation is most challenging and rewarding

My name is Joshua McKay, a student in Eli Tucker's Level 7 A3D class and we are currently underway in our group animation short project. I have been tasked with the Director role and at the moment looking for some suitable audio designs. Eli has mentioned to me that you might know a group that was willing/wanting to work with students from Yoobee? Its still very early stages of the project so this is just to get the feelers out and see if working with them would be beneficial for both parties?

Its a 40 second teaser about a beach invasion between mutant crabs and automotive tank turrets, with a lonely mechanic Robot as our main protagonist. We are lucky to be using Christian Pearce, Senior Concept artist at Weta, original designs. The genre will be action/comedy but I feel the more serious the style the better."

I've attached the main piece from Christian that we are basing the overall style from.

Eli only briefly mentioned about it, but are they more of a group that will be able to supply us with a backing track or individual sounds effects?

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IVEG: So we need someone willing to do the backing, and we also need people to volunteer to develop sound effects, ie robot crab noises, tank sounds, environment. I figure if we can work as a team, we might have a better chance of developing what Joshua's team needs.

Does anyone have experience using Discord as a communication channel?

https://discord.gg/VdRRTS 24 hour link to a 5090 Animation Discord server. This is only a test.

I'm in discord, armadillosafterdark haven't used it much to this point. Am available starting Monday to collaborate and do what I can to help.

Tank sounds: Engines idle, accellerate, running at speed, decellerate. tires on sand, rock, maybe spinning? Turrets rotate, guns adjust up/down. Fire cannon, explosion [against water, against sand, against crab]
Environment sounds: Sand, waves, wind
Crab noises: legs, claws [empty, on metal]
Music general themes: Lonely mechanic, tanks, crabs,

Discord works ok for real time chat, but we need something more robust. Ava suggested Trello. I'll look at it.

I signed up on Trello as Pearl Manhattan. Smile

Discord works as real time chat. I wonder if we need something more robust for sharing files, tracking progress, etc. Ava suggested Trello. It's a project management app like Post-Its on a whiteboard. Free for under 15 people, but limited functions.

I want something free and easy to use. Trello has that, and is super flexible. If anyone has other ideas, let me know.

Ok, people. I've got another request coming in. I'll post details as I learn them.
I'm one of Ava's students (StormTheBard in the Discord server) and she was telling us that you were interested in helping us with music and possibly sound effects for our assignments. I'm not 100% sure how to go about this, so just let me know if you need any more information but I do have an idea for the genre I would like for the music and the mood.

My story is a fantasy story with a Celtic/Gaelic setting so I'm leaning very heavily to a Celtic inspired soundtrack. Something that captures the overall feeling of the setting and conveys the high and low points of the story.

You can have a quick read of my story here if you would like: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1k3m79tOxE-LYULopAxoM0tQLFf4ieJkaG8Mn2uVwG2A/edit?usp=sharing

Just let me know if you need more information. I apologize for not being more thorough, I'm still very new to this and still learning.

Kind regards,


Raeanne posted the overall story, not the 60 seconds we would need to break down. If you have any ideas for themes, write and post them. I've asked her to let us know which part of the story she's going to animate. The better her breakdown is, the more we can tailor the music to her story.

Wow.....I'm not involved in this but I'm still sitting here very excited for what you all are doing. From the talents of the students, the willingness of this community to give give give, and Iveg for reaching out.
Everything I've read and seen is...i dunno, it makes me smile.
I wish everyone the best in these endeavors.
If the game music thing comes about, I would like to make some attempts...