Following 2015’s A Book of Brilliant Ideas and How to Have Them, prolific animation siblings Greg and Myles McLeod are back with another book designed to kick-start the creative process, inviting visual artists and storytellers to approach their ideas generation in a variety of new and interesting ways.
While there are plenty of books out there that promise to open the floodgates of creativity (oftentimes merely glorified notebooks), what sets the efforts of the Brothers McLeod apart is their notable track record in producing entertaining, award-winning animated films that oftentimes make use of distinctly atypical production processes, such as 2013’s year-long, one-second-a-day project 365. Among the other standouts in their filmography are Phone Home, The Moon Bird, the BAFTA-nominated Codswallop and last year’s The Inverted Peak. In Create Your Own Universe, released this week, the pair have siphoned their offbeat humour and freeform thinking into a series of exercises that will doubtless help any floundering creatives get unstuck, as well as those who want to try a new approach for curiosity’s sake.
The main topics covered, presented frequently as conversations between the brothers themselves, are: Character creation and development, worlds/environments and, crucially, story. Accompanying these more obvious areas are an assortment of insights regarding the value (motivational or otherwise) of getting involved in artistic communities, participating in contests and events, perseverance, creative ‘bibles’ that help solidify your fictional universe and breaking through the barriers of self-doubt.
Since its release last week it has already proved a hit with creative artists, who have praised it on social media:
— Adam Buxton (@AdamBuxton) March 27, 2017
— Nick J Cave (@cavedawes) April 4, 2017
— Yellowstone Studio (@illos_stone) April 3, 2017
— Jane E Davies (@UpstartThunder) March 31, 2017
— Jane E Davies (@UpstartThunder) April 1, 2017
To be in with a chance to win a free copy simply ‘like’ and RT the tweet below:
— Skwigly Animation (@skwigly) April 7, 2017