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Jeremy Parker
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John Power
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Chris Barker
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Matthew Riley
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Kate Cawley

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AIM 2012
2nd Semester
Starts 10:00am Monday the 16th of July


Here is a comprehensive schedule for the production and assessment of your Major Project for Semester 2, 2012.

Major Project Brief

The Major Project in the AIM studio is a chance to make a finished work.  As with your Minor Project, the theme, the platform and the method are all your choice. 

The Major is your chance to realize an idea to completion.  The work is managed individually, so the responsibilities of production and collaboration are all yours.  

The choice of medium is open.  In the past people have made interactive artworks or animated shorts in a variety of media. Collaboration between students on a Major Project is also an option and should be discussed and developed with staff.

Puppet animations
Visual Effects Breakdowns
Scratch on Film
Real Time  Environments
Hand drawn animations
Generative Media
Mobile Media
CGI animations
Projection Environments
Technical Project and Report

Please tackle complex problems in your solution.  Your final work will stand to exhibit much of your learning, your conceptual reach and your technical skills for an audience of your peers and prospective employers.  A cohesive and well-executed work should involve reflection on the concepts introduced in the first semester subjects, and show an ability to include high-level discipline-specific learning. 


Be sure that you build your project in a way which will stretch, but not break your ability to achieve it.  While it is possible to underestimate your production and conceptual abilities, overestimation is a more common problem.  Be aware that scale is a problem arising from lack of sufficient preproduction, and that the length of a work is no indicator of anything related to quality. 


You are strongly encouraged to access AIM’s extensive 30 year archive of past student work as a rich source of inspiration and reference for formulating approaches to a production technique, to find solutions to various production problems and as a means of gauging what sort of projects are of a scale practical within the time constraints and resources available to you. The Internet is also an invaluable tool, particularly for the most current information on the use of software. An additional learning resource can be found in the knowledge and expertise of your class peers.

Your Major Project will be evaluated largely on the strength of its concept, how successful or imaginative it was in communicating your ideas to an audience (your directorial ability) and on the level of craft skills and production values you achieved, and how well the elements available to animators and/or interactive media practitioners, underpinned and serviced the guiding premise of your work.

The Major Project course guide states that at the conclusion of this course you should be able to:

  • Demonstrate an ability to apply theories that harness the attributes of your chosen medium to practical production.
  • Communicate ideas in ways appropriate to the medium both at the pre-production stage and in the final published work.
  • Apply experiential knowledge of specialised production methods pertaining to your chosen project.
  • Demonstrate the ability to plan, organise and manage a production from concept to screen in a studio environment
  • Apply ways that enhance your original concept that come from the considered and creative use of production solutions.
  • Develop your directorial ability.



Pre-production Assessment
The management of the major project is up to you. There will be, however, preproduction markers that you will meet over the first six weeks of your work. In total, 20% of your Major Project marks will devoted to preproduction. There will be three pre-production assessment points. Excepted from assessment will a Review of Minor Projects, which will happen on the first of semester.

Your mentor will consult with you throughout the development of production of your project and will oversee and assess your pre-production submissions (see the schedule below). You will negotiate with your mentor how and when you will meet. Weekly meetings are 30 minutes.

Davey Sams
Richard Zhao
Angela Pinilla and Alastair Richardson
Kai Wang
Jing Li

Cheng Peng
Maya Toone
Jonathan Strugnell
Chi Xu
Gosia Lapinski
Sean Kelly

James Nour
Sarsha Brisbane
Edward Whitehead
Jason Kai
Anne Li
Rob Graham


Screening Committee
On the first day of semester you will elect a Screening and Exhibition Committee of around 5 members. This committee will work with the class to organize the final Graduate Screening and Exhibition and post-screening reception as well as organizing the making of the Graduate Work DVD. While the committee will organize the screening, they will not be solely responsible for undertaking all of the labour around the preparation and production of the screening and graduate DVD. The Screening and Exhibition Committee will meet regularly throughout Semester 2, keeping the organization of the screening and dvd on track.



Review of Minor Projects
10:00am Monday the 16th of July
Viewing with staff and students

On our first day back in Semester 2, we will view and review your Minor Projects as a group. The purpose of this session is to reflect on the process of developing and producing your Minor Projects ahead of entering the Major Project development and production cycle. This viewing will also allow you to situate your own work within the context of that of your peers and will expose you to the range of skills and knowledge collectively held within your cohort of students. This exposure is intended to encourage an exchange of ideas and learning between students that can be built into a significant learning resource. Your own reflections, along with those of staff and peers, should provide valuable insights and advice that can be considered and applied to your practise throughout Semester 2.

Consultation Toward Major Project Pitch

Monday 16th of July-Wednesday 18th of July

You may be able to discuss your Major Project with staff in advance or the Major Project Pitch. Staff will be available to consult with you on these days by arrangement. You'll need to speak with or email staff to arrange times to talk.



Please note, it is very important that you take comprehensive notes in each of these pre-production sessions and in meetings with your mentors.



Thursday the 19th of July, 10:00am
Presentation to class in x2 groups

This session does take the form of a pitch but it is less formal than the Minor Project pitch. You will have ten minutes to put forward your core idea – core conflicts, core character arcs, core concepts and messages.  Why are you choosing to produce this work?  What will be its function?

We would not expect a storyboard, EPOC or highly developed visual references in this session. We will focus on concept and intention through talking about broad issues like ideas, styles, methods, techniques, media, etc – all of the ‘wide issues’ of production. Use this session as a way to become involved with your audience by being open to critique. 



Wednesday the 25th of July

Today you'll submit your early draft Major Project Script or Interactive Treatment to the Major Project Script/Treatment file on the AIM2010 server. Scripts should be submitted in Screen Australia format. Treatments may follow the Interactive Treatment format used in semester one and should be accompanied by a flowchart.

We will be looking at the following:

-The strength of your concept; is it a strong idea, does is it feel orginial, innovative?
-The structure of your concept; have you found the best possible framing for your ideas?
-The suitability of your concept to the medium; does this idea exploit the capabilities of animation and/or interactivity?
-Clarity of communication


Over this four week period, you will work toward the Pre-Production Wrap Session (below). You'll consult with your mentor to develop milestones and deliverables over this time.


Thursday the 23rd of August, 10:00am

Screening for the Group of Animatics and EPOCS and
Production Shot Sample. Hand in of Schedule and Asset List

Each student will have around 10 minutes to screen their EPOCS/Animations and shot samples, without preamble or explanation and engage in a short feedback session with staff and fellow students. It's important to take notes during these sessions as feedback will be verbal.

In this session, you will show a timed out animatic, an EPOC, or similar that acts as a ‘blueprint’ of your Major Project. At this point, there should no major holes that might stop you from going forward into a period of intense production. You can treat this as a presentation that you might give a client or for stage 2 funding. Animatics must have at least a rough draft of sound and dialogue and EPOCS must have at least place holder sound and graphics. At this stage of pre-production, your work should stand alone, communicating its ideas clearly and requiring no explanation from you as the writer/director.

At this session you will also show a sample shot or screen from your work that demonstrates your approach to character, transition, interactive response or another significant element of your staging.

At this session you'll also submit a production schedule and asset list, your production schedule should be broken down into weeks and days. Please submit your EPOC/Animatic, shot and schedule to the AIM2010 hard drive.

This final Preproduction Wrap Session, represents the conclusion of your preproduction assessment.



Once you have moved out of the pre-production phase of Major Project cycle, you will continue to have weekly meetings with your mentors for most of the semester, again, this will be negotiated individually with your mentor.




Final Submission of Major Projects
Thursday the 8th of November by 5:00pm

Here are the submission instructions for your Major Projects.

Firstly, please make sure your credits and titles are all correct - the format for them can be found here:

As you know, the credits and titles are a very significant part of the work. Ones that are poorly handled can let down the project, but strongly considered and creative credits and titles can 'make' the project. The URL listed has some tips and advice on your Credits/Titles.

RMIT release forms can be found here -

This just allows us a limited use of your projects to be able to enter festivals/exhibitions on your behalf, have them appear on DVD's, trailers, websites, screenings etc. You retain copyright of your project, it just gives permission for AIM and RMIT to promote them.

You will also need to submit a completed/signed Submission sheet to accompany your project. Work cannot be asssessed without this.

Major Projects will be submitted on Thursday 8th November by 5pm on one (or more) clearly labeled DVD's. The two files will be burnt as data files (Quicktime), do not make a playable DVD that we cannot access.
Please check the DVD's are working before submission, those that aren’t will not be assessed.

Penalties for late submission are outlined in the Major Project Course Guide. Work will be set-up for the assessors at 5pm Thursday, anything submitted after this time will receive a penalty.

Two versions of your work need to be submitted - one using the Animation codec (at 100%, no compression) for the screening and the other with H264 compression for assessment. Both submissions need to be quicktime movies.

It is difficult to come to a general solution compression that is suitable for every film, however we think that H264 compression should work for most projects. If not please try mp4 compression.

This H.264 version is something we can play straight away for the assessors without it being too large or dropping frames.

Please be careful with Gamma using H.264 compression - here is a way to address it if it is a problem:

- After rendering into a QuickTime/H.264 file, open it up in QuickTime and select "Show Movie Properties." Highlight the video track then click on the "Visual Settings" tab.

- Towards the bottom left you should see "Transparency" with a drop-down box next to it.

- Select "Blend" from the menu then move the "Transparency Level" slider to 100%. Choose "Straight Alpha" from the same drop-down and close the properties window and finally, Save. 

Interactive projects will need to set up at Open Space for assessment.

Interactive projects can be set up on a particular dedicated computer with individual settings etc (we and the assessors need to be directed to this). These projects need to be ready to go for the assessors without set-up or involvement by staff. Any instructions can be left printed next to the computer or as a digital text file.

Interactive work must also be submitted on a DVD. If it is a game it must be a stand alone self-executable file (Mac and PC) with your trailer.
If it is an installation work you will need to submit your trailer and documentation material on to a DVD.

Trailers for Interactive work need to be maximum of one minute, with correct titles and credits as per the animation work.

The Animation version is needed for us to prepare the screening version of your project. As the work will run straight off a computer for the screening, we don't want the projects compressed twice. You will all have different size formats (High Definition, PAL etc) but the master screening version will end up being 1280 x 720 pixels.
Audio will need to be stereo at 16 bit at 48 khz.

Trailers of interactive projects also need to be submitted as Animation versions.

Assessment will take place on Monday 12th November, students will not be able to use the AIM Studio this day.

Screening and Exhibition of Major Works
Thursday 29th November 7pm - 9pm

There will be a Best of AIM 2012 screening at ACMI on Tuesday 27th November.

On the 29th November we will present a screening of selected Major Works at Storey Hall. The screening will run from 7pm to 9pm. Access to Storey Hall is given at 1pm to set up interactive and installation work. Set up is your responsiblity, we recommend contacting Storey Hall earlier if there are any questions regarding equipment and set-up.

Not all works will be screened or exhibited. The ranking of the works will be determined by the assessors and staff and also the resources and time available.

Students will be informed individually via email if their work is not being screened/exhibited before the screening date.


Clean up of Studio
Friday 30th November, at whenever you can bear it...

Once recovered from the previous evenings excitement, please undertake one final collaborative project, the clearing up of the studio post-party.


If you have any queries about the Major Project please talk to Matthew Riley (




Studio Tour and Hunter and Gatherer Lunches
On Wednesday mornings throughout most of August, we will be undertaking our Studio Tour programme. Throughout this month, we’ll visit a range of companies that represent a cross section of the Animation and Interactive Media industries in Melbourne. The purpose of this tour is to provide you with an insight into the industrial application of the skills you are developing during your time in the AIM programme.

Hunter Gatherer lunches will continue throughout much of Semester 2.  A schedule of speakers will be available at the start of Semester 2. Our expectation is that you will attend the Hunter Gatherer lunches. Our guest speakers each week will have experiences and insights around the development and production of audio visual work that will be invaluable to you as you engage in the process of realizing your projects. Our guests generously give us their time each week and we expect that you
will attend these lunches as part of your professional development.