Le Vieil Homme et les Poissons

See the film Here!

Intro: This is my good friend David Bokser's senior thesis at Savannah College of Art and Design. He asked me to do some animation on his piece and I was more than happy to do so. He's a really talented guy, check out his site.

Synopsis: It's about an old man who longs to be a fish and constructs a fish suit to fulfill his dream.

Production Technique: The whole project was done in Maya (all 3d) and Shake (compositing)

What I did: I did the character animation in the following shots:

"Tender Fish Moment"

Description: This was probably my most challenging shot. There was a lot of emotion and thinking that needed to happen in the shot.

"Turn on the Fish Suit"

Description: This was a fun shot. Had to really work on the weight in the shot and play up the act of turning on the suit to make it read well.

"Ready to Go"

Description: This shot took some work to get the weight of the suit right. Too light and too heavy is a fine line to tread.

"Fish Feed"

Description: This was my first real shot on the project. It was a lot of fun. Keeping the banking on the fish right was my main struggle in this one.

"Hammer Scale In"

Description: The animation I did for this one initially had multiple hammer strikes, but was cut for pacing and timing of the piece. I think it was a good call.

"Nail Pickup"

Description: This was one of those shots that isn't particularly exciting but needed to be done nonetheless. I initially was over animating it but Dave just wanted the nail picked up, so I toned it way back.

Completion Date: Spring 2004

Lessons Learned: I learned a lot of valuable lessons on this one.

  • Working on a group project with a good team can be a great experience
  • Even "mundane" shots must be done and done well
  • Get clear direction from the director on what the key motion of the shot needs to be, otherwise, you'll have to redo it;)
  • Quick selection sets coupled with character sets give the greatest flexibility while animating


  • June 2005 - 1st place - character animation at the siggraph 2005 space-time student competition
  • May 2005 - Short film “Old Man and the Fish” nominated for a Student Academy Award from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
  • March 2005 - Short film “Old Man and the Fish” received Juror's Choice Award from the 9th Annual Arizona State University Art Museum Short Film and Video Festival
  • February 2005 - Short film “Old Man and the Fish” received 2nd place in the Non-Traditional Animation category from the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Foundation College Awards.
  • November 2004 - Short film “Old Man and the Fish” received Grand Prize in Digital Cinema award from the Digital Art Awards 2004 in Tokyo, Japan.
  • January 2004 - ANIMEX Student Animation Festival Finalist with short film “Traffik”


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