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In the latest episode of 'The VFX Process' podcast, host Jamie Bakewell has the pleasure of speaking with the talented and hilarious duo behind Tiny Media, Nick Alberelli and Youp Zondag. What started as a simple idea between two friends, has now blossomed into a boutique Canadian animation studio, known for their unique and visually stunning creations.

The original idea was to create an animated comedy web-series using stop motion, but the laborious nature of the medium led them to explore other options. Youp, who had experience with Toon Boom, suggested using it, but Nick, considering their limited budget, proposed using Blender's Grease Pencil tool, as it is a free and powerful software. This decision allowed them to create a 2D animation in a 3D work environment, which has helped them develop their distinctive and intentional style.

Their first creation under Tiny Media was 'BLOWN APART!', a historical web-series centred around Napoleon Bonaparte and his dysfunctional family and empire. Despite their limited budget, and the fact that their office was an incomplete basement, Nick and Youp were able to create high-quality episodes with their combined creative and technical abilities. Youp, a self-taught animator, writer, and artist, brings his artistic vision to life, while Nick, an artist and engineer, focuses on leveraging technology to tell compelling stories.

One of the key elements of Tiny Media's success is their collaborative process. Nick and Youp have a deep understanding of each other's strengths and weaknesses, and they complement each other perfectly. They have learned to work efficiently and creatively within their budget constraints, finding innovative solutions to achieve their vision without compromising on quality. The music and sounds (Michael Ferguson) and voice over work (Gianni Sallese as Napoleon) is done by friends who clearly share Nick and Youp's vision, as their contributions bring just as much to the each episode.

Blender's Grease Pencil has been a game-changer for Tiny Media. The tool's flexibility and versatility have allowed them to create stunning 2D animations in a 3D space, giving them the freedom to experiment with different styles and techniques. They have found that the Grease Pencil workflow fits seamlessly into their creative process, allowing them to iterate and refine their animations quickly.

In addition to 'BLOWN APART!', Tiny Media is also working on other exciting projects that are yet to be announced. With their unique approach to animation and storytelling, Nick and Youp are constantly pushing the boundaries of what is possible on a small budget.

If you're curious to learn more about Tiny Media's creative process, their journey in creating high-quality productions on a shoestring budget, and how they use Blender's Grease Pencil to bring their vision to life, be sure to check out the latest episode of 'The VFX Process' podcast. Prepare to be inspired by their passion, creativity, and determination to make their mark in the world of animation:

(Watch The VFX Process here)


You can watch The Process over on our YouTube channel or for and extended conversation listen to the audio podcast on Spotify and Apple Podcasts.



Whether you are just starting out and want to learn more, looking for feedback on your work, an industry professional with valuable tips and tricks to share, or you just want a place to chat about software, industry news and what people are getting up to...come and get involved! Bigtooth Studios have a new Discord channel...a community for those with an interest in 3D, Animation, Film, Game & TV.

Follow the link for your invite to join and get involved in the community...See you there!


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