Wednesday, 28 October 2009

creative tinkering

Steampunk Aural Enhancer, from

 A few ideas to get those creative juices flowing;

stumbled across the latest flip animation festival (5th Nov 09) offering all sorts of events around the subject of animation.

  • Flip is an eclectic mix of all things animation. Based in the heart of the Midlands the festival provides a wide range of experiences from educational workshops for young people to experimental animation for grown ups; from industry led panels to feature film screenings and from international showcases and retrospectives of short films to spotlights on animation studios.  The event is located mainly in the Lighthouse media centre who also provide low cost training courses covering animation and video production, including HD.

  • One session that stuck out was a Game Design Workshop for only 5 quids!! This one day workshop, run in conjunction with Wolverhampton University’s Institute of Gaming and Animation, is a great opportunity to get introduced to the X-Box XNA game platform which allows users to begin developing their own games with the free downloadable tools from Microsoft.  You can download and tinker with the X-Box XNA developers kit to create your own games.

  • Whilst following links around the Lighthouse media centre I discovered "Mediabox", the fund that offers 13-19 year olds the chance to create their own media projects and get their voices heard, has opened its Mix Mediabox strand. Mix Mediabox enables organisations working within the community to apply for grants of between £5,000 - £20,000 for youth-led media projects that explore the theme of community cohesion. 

So essentially you bid for funds to create fun and interesting productions using film, animation, etc.  The videos already produced are inspriing stuff. Mix Mediabox is open to registered charities, trusts, local authorities and unincorporated associations.

  • On the subject of tinkering I also came across a website called , which is a design studio that builds interactive products, spaces and events that bridge the physical and the digital. They've got some excellent ideas and event running. Including the Arduino workshops.  I was intrigued to discover that Arduino is an open-source electronics prototyping platform based on flexible, easy-to-use hardware and software. It's intended for artists, designers, hobbyists, and anyone interested in creating interactive objects or environments.
So it could be used to teach product design engineering, electronics, etc, in schools, colleges & Universities?  So you've got free games developers kits and free eletcronics prototyping gubbins :O)... In fact this Wired artcle lists some of the more popular (and) free programming and games platforms.

  • To further inspire you take a look at one of my favourite sites : instructables.  It's what the web is for !O).  See top image


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