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This last weeks we, together with Isak, we’ve been experiencing amazing, beautiful feelings.  Everything because of the people that has come across our way with Fran Bow.
Is really beautiful to see almost everyday a new video up on Youtube, or a “fran-tastic Fan art” , even we got a song! All that love we already receiving because of Fran Bow… is just incredible!!!

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(This fan art was made by Sara, thank you!!!)


(And the song by Salima! She wrote her own lyrics!!!)

And we felt, like giving something back. That is why we made a pretty huge improvement in the alpha DEMO.
First of all, now has Isak a very short summer vacation and he uses all his free time in fixing the demo, so I have to thank him forever! After this short vacation he will be back in the ordinary work that he hates so much.
But it also shows that if we were working on the game full time, the project would be done very soon.

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Anyways, about the Indiegogo campaing, I have to thank a lot to the youtubers, because of them Fran Bow have reached to a bigger audience. But the sad part is also that even for us, the quantity is not important, but quality, is now quantity that matters. We have reached out more, with the help of everybody… and we really don’t know what else to do to reach out more. I know the public is out there, but is hard to find them.

So this is kind of a public message to tell, to who ever read this that :D!!

Maybe the plot of Fran Bow is not that original, or maybe that the mechanics are not that original or what ever, it is a point and click after all! but we do know that this game has a heart and a peculiar beauty that is awaiting for you to find.
Of course there is no game that suits everybody… but I really wishes you just give it a try, the demo is there ready to be played and be loved.. 😀  or hated… 😦

And going back to the DEMO UPDATE topic, well… we made also the demo available for the Android!!! We do not recommend it for very tiny screens  or very old phones either.
In the demo we have really improved the feelings of the bloody world, we also put some new animations to Fran Bow so you can learn more about her. Also more interaction with the ghost on the bloody part and some new sound effects, is pretty much different in the whole experience.
But still just an alpha demo and is not representing the finished product!

Thank you again for everything!!!

We made super nice updates also on the perks!! *_* Like the Full documentary of Making Fran Bow , Mr midnight doll and t- shirts!

Don’t forget to spread the word and help us to make this possible! ❤ http://igg.me/at/franbow/x/3685638

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Love,
Natalia

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I’m tired. Sorry to complain, but I am.

I love to do a game, that it self is a journey to complete. That opens a lot of other opportunities too, you get to know people, awesome people! that will lead you in the way or learn from them and try to find the path in a cooperative way. This is only the most beautiful thing I ever did. Fran Bow makes this possible to me.

But it has a very huge amount of giving ups too. Right now, as a “creator or artist or whatever you want to call it” I don’t feel in the right place. I need to draw and write… and sometimes trying to sell out what you believe in, because everything in the ends turn into money, you lose a bit of yourself and I’m pretty sure that this is something a lot of Indies are also living up.

But I’m new in this and I have to say, is not easy to wake up every day directly to your computer and see if you got an answer from the tons of mails you sent! And the answers are not there. And of course is not only about the mails!

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You have to have a pretty awesome Press kit and everything else, because the world is spinning fast and nobody will stop for you! Not even a second! And is there, when you realize you don’t reach nothing! Isak and I are all days, everyday, spreading the word about Fran Bow, and we feel like filthy animals selling out… but we don’t have another chance!

We are super thankful about all the help we got until today, is very beautiful to see people that really like Fran Bow!

Now, with 46 days left in the Indiegogo campaign the only thing we have left to do is keep on trying to reach people…

The only thing I can be sure about this game is that, Fran Bow is not only about the horror, is about life, about how a little girl will confront a huge world, that is a painful one and also funny… That in a way is pretty close to all of us  and also about a friendship that goes beyond reality and takes place in fantasy but that can be more real than anything else…

And I just want to be a little bitch again, and link you all our Indiegogo Campaing! Hope you can help finish Fran Bow! http://igg.me/at/franbow/x/3685638

With Love

/Natalia

Fran Bow DEMO – Available!

Hello!

! I want to share with you the first developer video blog, hope you like it. If you have something to ask or any desires of seeing something special in the next video, just ask! ^_^

And remember our Indiegogo Campaign!  http://igg.me/at/franbow/x/3685638

Is very important to reach the goal so we can actually make the game! On Monday we will be releasing a DEMO of the first part of the game so you can play and share with your friends!

And thank you ALL who already is helping us!

Hello:

I’m still shaking.

 

After 7 hours of releasing our project to Indiegogo it feels like the emotions just keep growing.

Few weeks ago was a hell.Me and Isak, my husband were so near to left all our life together behind and divorce. Money as you all know is a big pain in the arse and sometimes that makes huge impact in personal relations, even love exist sometimes you just can’t take it anymore. Then, something very less important; the Paypal thing was not working for us. But that actually was a good thing to happen, Isak and I got together while the Paypal thing was not working. We disconnected from world and now LOVE wins the battle!

The hope is back and a strength, that was totally gone, is back and stronger.

Today, when we released our Indiegogo campaign I saw very great response, something really unexpected. I don’t know what will happen now, we have 60 days to see! I want to thank now, to everyone that believes in our project and have been there almost from the begging. You know who you are.

And I just wanted to let you know that I’m so happy and really hope we can do this! And really thank to everyone that until now has helped us! A HUGE hug to all of you! And super much LOVE!

If you wonder about what campaign you can see it here. 🙂

http://igg.me/at/franbow/x/3685638

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“Who is FRAN BOW? She is a girl, a pretty sweet little girl with a fucked up mind and story to tell”

About 11 years ago, I wrote a play… a theater play. It was about a girl named “Nobody”…

This story have evolved since then to be what FRAN BOW is today.

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I attempted to do this story in many ways. Animation, film, comic etc… but always did happened something that stopped it! Like a magical force or whatever. I even got a bit of money for an animated short film… But the forces of good stopped me of doing it. After a few years after those other attempts, like 2 or so I got an idea about doing games, because there was something missing in my creation part… I wasn’t able to be “interactive” with the people… and games gave me that, it gave me the music, the arts, the stories…and the interaction! PERFECT! So Me and Isak got into it! We did came up with an awesome idea but I don’t have any 3d training so that would be in a future… but then I though… WHY NOT MAKING MY SUPER ANCIENT STORY????  The girl “Nobody” was becoming into somebody and that was FRAN BOW! Yey!!!

Now, I’ve been working with Isak with Fran Bow since last year August. It has really been a FUCKING ROLLERCOASTER! DAMN! But I’m so proud of everything I have learned until today! I have cried and laughed and almost puked… because there is a lot of blood and meat and for research I have seen stuff I really got shocked with.

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Well, the game itself  have a huge amount of graphic work and story telling… All the puzzles are part of the story and only are there to get to the next point. You can talk and choose what you say and for that reason get or not get good information. You can be interactive with Non-Playable characters and get tips or things depending of what you say… At the end of every place or piece of story will be a mini game. In this mini games the graphics change dramatically and Fran becomes a Pixel girl in a Pixel world!

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SO actually making Fran Bow is like making a LOT of different games at the same time! BUT is so great! The games engine is almost done but in the last 2 month we haven’t work that much in the game because of money and because of time. The time is consumed by the need of getting money with shitty jobs to pay food and rent.

I’m thinking seriously now in making a Indiegogo campaign. I surely will do it soon. Some friends have tried the game and others not so friends too and they have been insanely carried away by the story and the puzzles! So we truly believe in this game… and with tears and blood it will be done soon or later… but everybody knows that the lack of money make everything fall slow and I’m sick of it.

Well… I also want to tell more about the story… but not all. The first things you get to know about Fran is that her parents are brutally murdered and she only have left two individuals that really cares about her. Her cat Midnight and aunt Grace. Fran in the desperation of seeing her parents die, she falls into shock and runs away from home. And after that the only thing we see is her inside a mental institution… But she has to get to find her cat and go home… On the way home she will indeed, find a lot of weird characters… weird places… and MORE weird when she takes the pills… The red pills that will make everything change and see things.

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It’s an amazing and magical game actually… or maybe is just me like a super proud mom, we also thought about releasing the game the 25th July… That is not longer the truth. We are noobs and we did not know about what IT REALLY TAKES TO BE A DEVELOPER!!!!. Stay tuned for more info about this game. We also have another wordpress for me and Isak www.killmonday.wordpress.com  We  named our selfs killmonday because we don’t like mondays :$ Like a lot of people may I guess.

😀 Hope you like my and Isaks almost done game in a few months! 😀 Fraaaaaaan! ❤

Peace out the brothers and the sisters

Natalia.

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Pixxxel is a very sexy mini game I designed a few months ago. I haven’t been really hard on the “sharing” part with it because of it content.

I mean is not a hardcore porno game, but it can make you feel ashamed if you play it in front of your mom.

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Everything begins because of pixel art actually. I had this conversation once with a friend and we talked about the simplicity in pixel art…

Well. I love simplicity too… but sometimes it gets really REALLY ABSTRACT, to the point I don’t even understand what I’m looking at… And I just get dizzy…

Anyways, so in this conversation, we talked also about getting feelings through simplicity.

And again… I was not feeling quite familiar with this terms… Simplicity and feelings with few pixels… Okay!

So I started to draw… only with pixels, to could achieve actually what this guy was talking about, but in a more EXTREME WAY. So I decided to go DEEPER, HARDER.

😀 Haha!

When I drew a few porno pixel sweeties, Idecided to call my “work”…” Minimalist pixel art with feelings” 

But something was missing… I needed to see this pixels alive… animation? Nah…  A game?! Si, porfavor!! (Yes please!)

At the same time Isak and I was trying to finish our main project, “Fran Bow” (That game is just WONDERFUL, but not finished yet 😦 ) Anyways, so he was learning to program at the same time he was doing Fran Bow, so we thought – Why not to take a break and do something else just for a few weeks? Just for relaxing and learning others things!

So I told him about my ideas and the gameplay of Pixxxel and he wanted, yes! To work on it right away! And He made the fabulous music too!!! *_*

Well, the gameplay is very obvious… you have to get tired! Just like when you have sex… but you have sex with your keyboard! That’s the whole point! Well… you Press with your fingers, if you like, the space bar so many times you can in 10 seconds to achieve, bronze, silver or gold.

If you get gold in every level you will be crowned THE FUCKINATOR and learn the fuckinator dance.

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And in the end, we got quite a response, but all of it was very underground! Soo shhh!

I don’t know… I don’t try to be rude or anything but sex is fun… (with all the safe thing you have to have in mind of course! U_U)

I think this is also a way for me to protest about mostly of people being so double faced with sex, just relax! Enjoy Pixxxel, penises and vaginas made of pixel!

Play it! Press on Start! (Html5 game)

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Hope you enjoy!

Natalia

Well. In the last “About animation” I talked mostly about getting to know your character and getting to know the possibilities of your character physically, how I like to call “Natural capabilities”.

I’m gonna talk about  “weight…” . And I want to begin with this because I think is very important to learn first about the physics and space… I mean we are not really talking about animation yet! Ugh… We are understanding reality I guess :D.

Timing is one of the mayor things in animation, but I’m not sure if for me was the first thing I wanted to learn… I mean without the timing the animation is not alive. Pauses are the most important thing. But that I’m gonna take it when we are done with the space! So now we are talking about weight! !!!! !!

Space in the other hand I refer to everything you can see and touch and USE!. Timing is more of a feeling thing … You can’t see the time, you just fell it, you live in it. Space, you see it, feel it and can touch it, use it! Space is used when you walk, when you sleep.. and so on.. Don’t be afraid of space or time. USE THEM A LOT!

So now, Weight!

I’m gonna show you my very first animation attempt of “weight” in animation.  A factor indeed very important that will give the environment the physics it needs or at least one of the factors. When you animate never just leave it there, really! Go back and see what you did wrong or what you got better than the last time… It helps a lot.

Set your eyes on the box and the characters reaction to the box.

1. Our main character “Zita” prepares him self to lift the box… his whole body is into it, he knows the box may be heavy!

2. His tries to lift the box, but it’s too heavy for him… He tries harder. Arms and body are complexity in it maximal natural capability…

3. Arms straight and body going backwards with the head pointing a bit forwards to keep balance… This give us the illusion that the box is heavy.

4. Showing that the character gets really tired trying to lift the box, give us more weight, damn this box is heavy!

5. He thinks about opening the box instead… the ribbon is tight too. But there, my fail… the ribbon is not straight enough and it doesn’t give the “real illusion” of pulling hard! Make things straight when they have to!

6. When he is able to climb the box, we get a bit more of the illusion of a tight ribbon.

7. His own body weight… the ribbon opens and he falls!

8. We see the box inside… nothing but a feather or a leaf… very light indeed…

Everything weights, so we have to learn about it, know it. The best thing I ever did to understand weight was to go outside and stare at things.. or look at them… Or just take something and throw it around. Kick things, look at the mirror and jump. Lay down, go up… You can do a lot of things first to could achieve a consciousness about what’s around you and that everything, has it own behavior because f it weight! Just look around! Examine! Observe!

Everything has a space behavior and a time behavior. If you pick up a feather.and let it fall. It falls slowly… because of the shape, because of the weight. And because of the natural capabilities it falls in a speed that is allowed to fall. Slow!  Think of the air being actually a piece of paper, the feather is so light that it doesn’t have the power to break the paper or go through it. Instead we take a rock, and we throw it straight to the “air” and it weights a lot more than the feather, it goes faster and it breaks the “air” and it falls faster! When it reaches the ground it bounce because the ground was harder to break than the air… and POOF! it bounce again and try to break the ground again and again until it has no power to try it again. (Hope this explanation did not confuse you more…:$)

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The truth is that is very hard to separate all the animation principles because, is the complexity of them all, that makes a good animation… well not all of the at the same time… of course! otherwise it gets really annoying.

I personally think balance  makes everything into gold.

Thumbnails are also very VERY important, because before you get to animate you have to know where you are going to, and the thumbnails gives you a pretty good idea of movement and spacing, you can always make your line of movement before, so your sketches feel more alive and guide you when you animate.

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Well, hope this was in somehow helpful.

PS: Remember to look around and study a bit about the weight in things!

Natalia

What I’m about to share with you is not from a book. They are my very personal experiences as an animator and character creator.

Very well. Animation how many of you know, is about giving life. To animate is bring life to something that is not alive. Doh! :$  We can’t forget that. Is the most important. I mean there are a lot of different techniques and principles but what animation really means, is about LIFE!

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In that picture, we see Mikaboot. He is a little robot-boy. In the picture he looks completely dead. But the only reason we draw him in different angles is to learn a bit about his body and what can we learn about his natural capabilities. With that I mean that I can’t jump 10 meters up in a tree just form the ground because my natural capabilities or body shape doesn’t allow it…

What we could tell about Mikaboot is that, he has very short legs, and long arm right? Well… maybe the way he walks is very quick but with short legs then every step is very short and quick!Then the arms are too long so maybe he just lift his arms to could walk with no arms bothering him. 

Well, that’s an observation about a character and what he could do. But in animation… all rules can be broken or you can decide your own rules! But if we are breaking rules we have to be able to believe them too. Now, with my observation about Mikaboot I could draw other things about him.

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Now we see him with a little bit more of character. We learn that he is very dramatic. When he is sad his arms are falling hard from his shoulders and he gets heavy. When he is happy we feel the lightness in his body.

Now we know about what Mikaboot shows us when he feels things. Now we add a background story. WE NEED TO KNOW WHO HE IS, really. I mean… sometimes is even hard to know who you are. But we have to… otherwise we are just animating a body…. a shape and not a character.

– We could say that Mikaboot is 5 years and he has to start school soon. And his meaning with life right now is to skip that… He doesn’t want to go to school! He lives with his parents and he doesn’t have any friends and that makes him a very insecure guy.-

So now, we know a bit more about him. That can give us a very open point of view about this boy, simple but deep. And all this backgrounds stories… nobody needs to know them. Sometimes the background stories are not in the story because they are boring. They are just there to could explain you, as an animator…who the hell I’m giving life to… and in that way… you kind of create a link and I tell you… that link is magical. I don’t know if with the time I just lose my mind but sometimes that link gets so strong that my characters talk to me…

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Well… I really recommend before trying to give life to something… realize who is it. And If it is a stone… a machine or whatever… think, really think… everything have a natural capability… and that is one of the things you shouldn’t forget. Even we are breaking rules with animation… I have a natural way of being and that is what it makes me believable. If you are working with other people and you are not your own director well, the director should give you this information… of course. If is not giving to you… then ask for it!

If you have any questions, I’m very open to answer them. I’ll write about actual animation in next blog 😛

/Natalia

Polly: a very serious search, born from a very old illustration I made. It was under a period I really couldn’t create anything. I was trying to find everywhere inspiration. I did a lots of attempts of “art” projects… but nothing really flowered. So I made this drawing:

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A lot later,like 2 years or something  I had my exam to animation school,  I was, really in need of an idea or something. But I was blank…. I started another project that requires a lots of money and time and I had tried to do that a long time ago…( about that one I’m gonna talk  about later) but at the same time I started to work in a production for a Swedish animation company so my time to the project was cut down to half.

But then… I saw that illustration on the wall… just hanging there… and yes yes! I wanted to do just an animation about that… making your imagination feel better with the medics box just when I didn’t have any ideas… this was perfect.

But I had to make it a bit longer… and with a story… so I began to write about actually…what I do with my imagination… and I guess a lots of people also do. I wanted to do a message of hope to all those that lose their imagination just for a while… and that eventually always come back.

Is a very simplistic story and I was very happy about that, because I always did stuff that nobody understood… well… maybe some people. Anyways… I was very happy and I started to think in the style of the short film.

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I wanted to do it complete 2d. And with that I mean draw every single frame… but I couldn’t… I didn’t have the time for that. So I decided to do a cut-out animation. That means that you draw all the parts, cut them and animate those parts.

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I couldn’t afford either the glass table for a “real” cut-out, because another girl in my class was using school’s table. Anyway… so I did it with Animation studio in the computer.

SO I draw all the parts on paper with ink and acquarelles, scanned and cut/ separated everything in GIMP and then animated it in the computer.

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I was in the end, really happy about it. My friend Robert made the music, and Isak my husband fixed the sound. Everything was super great! Then I searched for a guy who could talk in french… I don’t know why but sometimes I get this ideas of doing something in different languages… anyways, so Polly is in French, Swedish, English and Spanish… ( The Spanish version was made by a friend, Rafa from Spain)

The English version got a lots of views and even a tv channel from California contected me for showing the short on television. A lot of Online magazines wrote about it and it got really much the attention it deserved.

So hope you like it!

Natalia