__MAIN_TEXT__
feature-image

Page 1

AMAZE

MAGAZINE

Trails Underwater Realm Make a Star FREE SOFTWARE The up & coming band talk to Amaze Magazine

The Kickstarter funded project

Meet the winners of Make A Star

Our guide to the best free software!


Inside: MUSIC Trails Charlotte Partt Nicky Haldenby Lab Records featuring Young Kato MAKE A STAR featuring: Valerie Orth & Lunic Xtra Mile Recordings featuring Straight Lines, Crazy Arm, Fighting Fiction, & Jim Lockey & The Solemn Sun ART Sushil Shrestha Emma Wallis Webbs Fine Art Gallery Maria Klochkova Rafeal Avila Naomi Avsec SOFTWARE SPECIAL LINKAGE FILM The Underwater Realm BAD FEELING FILM LITERATURE Wolfhawk Writing Fast 5 Interview: Tim Knight Geraldine McCaughrean 5WAYS FEATURES The Erin Award Gamecast: SSX Review

02

Welcome note:

!

CLICK

to view

Emma Wallis was trained as an illustrator at Swindon College, completing a HND course, she the Welcome to Edition 2 of Amaze Magazine. This month we are all about the ‘click’ feature and we

encourage you to click away and see even more great content. This is a special bumper edition thanks to our Open World feature that showcases some great free software, and if you look hard enough you will also find some free music and much more... We want to continue to make this great magazine just for you, so please sign up to the website to get exclusive content and give us feedback.

Cover Star

The brand new competition by 5ways Media The team at 5ways are proud to announce our brand new regular competition - Cover Star The idea is that we want YOUR pictures to use on the front cover of Amaze Magazine and so all you need to do is get your camera out and take some photos, then send them to us and you could win!

May cover and will be open until May 20th 2012. Send all entries to timknight81@gmail.com by midnight May 20th 2012. For full terms and conditions go to: www.fivewaysjunction.co.uk

We are looking for either images of people or artistic pictures so the guidance is pretty broad. All entries need to be hi-res photos and without any kind of watermark. The opening Cover Star competition is for our

Don’t worry if your images don’t win either, as we may still use them within the magazine so either way you could get featured. ALL winners get a feature interview in Amaze Magazine within their chosen month as well.

58


THE NEXT GENERATION We interview the best new upcoming talent from around the UK, including musicians, composers, & much more...


We got to ask some of the band a few questions, here is what they said. What is it like being in a band? Like swimming in an ocean of cherry panda pops and glistening nipple tassels. What advice would you give to someone? Question everything

06

How much did you spend on your videos? We are a DIY band so all our videos have to be cheap. All The Other Humans was free and shot in a friends studio. I think any costs were however much we spent on drink that night. Before I Begin we forked out a huge amount of money for coloured tissue paper, face paints and a bit of black cloth. I think we invested more time and sanity than money into that one due to the stop start animation. Lastly A Turn Of

Phrase we upped the price again and splashed out on poster paint, balloons and sandwiches from the shop for lunch.

on the budget you have. People will forgive slightly amateur production if they see you’ve put your heart into it and given them a new experience.

You’re quite inventive with them, any advice for people looking to do something similar?

Where does your sound come from? Who are you influenced by?

Don’t strive for that supposedly professional video that’s just like everyone elses, but has nothing exciting about it. It’s boring and lame and makes your band look

The universe and we honestly have too many influences to mention... What plans do you have coming up?

Touring, writing, recording, releasing, videoing, touring! A lot of people say you have to approach being in a band as running a business, how do you approach the whole management side of things? In a very serious and time consuming manner! We manage ourselves, and you have to look at it like a job, otherwise you don’t get anything done and you’ll be very

disorganised. These days it’s mainly a laptop job – constantly emailing promoters, managers, press, fans, bands, merch companies, each other etc etc to get everything done. Buy their new single ‘A Turn of Phrase’ by clicking the link below:

07


To celebrate the launch of their new single ‘A Turn of Phrase’ Trails are giving away a free-tshirt signed by the band to one lucky Amaze Magazine winner. To be in with a chance of winning all you have to do is like Trails on their Facebook page and say the following - I LOVE Trails thanks to Amaze Magazine! One lucky winner will get a signed t-shirt and maybe a few extras too, all entries must be in by the 30th May 2012.

http://www.wearetrails.com


CHARLOTTE PARTT Links http://www.charlottepartt.com/ (my website) http://soundcloud.com/charlottepartt (music profile) https://twitter.com/#!/CPMusicTweet (Twitter)


Who are you? (for those who don’t know you...) Hi I'm Charlotte Partt, a Cornish based Film/TV composer. Currently writing music for US television, as well as music for UK films. What style of music is your favourite? It's a cliche to say, but I don't really have a favourite as such. The nature of my job means I've got to listen to all types of genres as I'm never sure what one Director/Producer is going to be after sound wise. More recently I've been listening to a lot of fellow film composer's work, and I've obviously got to have a soft spot for that film score genre in general. I just love music full stop really!

CHARLOTTE PARTT

What equipment do you use and what would you recommend?

Composer

I'm team mac! I use Apple's 'Logic Pro Studio', as well as the 'Kontakt' sampler software to create all my music. I also have a whole load of instrument libraries, acoustic instruments, and would be lost without my midi keyboard! If you can put up with paying a silly amount, then I'd recommend mac everytime! Can you give any tips to those looking to make money from the industry?

12

If you're going into this industry just to make money, then you're not going to get anywhere. You have to be prepared to work your backside off for little financial reward, there is money there; but its only a small percentage who will actually ever have access to it! If you feel you may be interested in

"If your going into this industry just to make money, then you’re not going to get anywhere...” becoming a visual media composer, then you have to be prepared to work for free to begin with. Work with student film makers, as some of them could be the future Spielberg’s of tomorrow. Also listen to loads of music; broaden your horizons. There’s so much advice out there, when I first started I trawled the internet looking for it, my main advice for the readers of this who are interested in the industry, is

really to do the same! What has been your career highlight so far? I think so far its getting signed to ‘CouldB Entertainment’ over in LA, they’re an awesome company founded by the former VP of MTV Networks Ken Parks. In the short time I’ve been there so far I’ve already had the chance to produce music from different genres,

for various US TV series that are in production. I’ve also recently got my first gig scoring a feature, which I absolutely cant wait to begin scoring!

talent! They all know who they are! I try and make sure the people I think are awesome, know that I think they are (whether they want to know or not!)...Oh and my cat!

lack of money in it!... But I think most people either want more money, or think they deserve more!

Who are your heroes?

What are the negatives of your industry?

So many positives for me... Job satisfaction, I feel like I’m contributing to something important (even if others see it

So many! My family, friends, some amazingly talented fellow composers that continue to inspire me and dumbfound me on a daily basis with their crazy

I’m so new to the industry, I think I’ve still got my rose tinted glasses on to be honest. If I had to pick one thing it would be the

What are the positives?

as just the film industry). I love doing it, when I go to bed its the last thing I think about, and when

13


I wake up its the first thing I think about! It pushes me to better myself, and be a workaholic; whereas previously I felt like I was drifting. So many positives, for now the negatives kind of seem obsolete. Any other bits of advice? Do what you love, and always remember to change your pants and socks in the morning! 5ways would like to thank Charlotte for her i nterview and you can hear the exlusive track she created for us by clicking the link below.

SUPPORT

Nicky has decided to enter the Make A Star competition.

Last weeks feature interviewee Nicky Haldenby has entered the Make A Star competition and he needs your support to go all the way and win. So lets get everyone voting on our rising star and show America what us Brits can do! You can vote for him by going too: http://www.makeastar.com/contestant.asp?rContestid=7650&rContest antid=89310&rMatchType=Final&rMatchName=Match#

62


LAB welcomes incredible UK band YOUNG KATO to the family. Learn more and download some free music at http://facebook.com/weareyoungkato The track you can hear is a first mix of 'Break Out' from the band's debut EP, coming in July. See the band in Bristol for free with Pixie Lott on June 2. Details: http://labrecs.com/ YoungPixie Visit the official LAB website for more: http://labrecs.com


ake A Star

Meet some past winners from the competition which is open for you to enter every month.

Click the logo below to enter right now...

M

akeAStar.com has its origins in the early days of the web as a site for new artists to help build their careers by connecting with new fans and the music industry. Founded on a mission to provide artists with a platform to help grow their musical careers though monthly music competitions, Make A Star is a place where quality talent can gain large scale exposure - regardless of location or musical genre. MakeAStar holds monthly music and music video contests in bracket formats with $100 (£63) cash prizes given to the winners in several categories, totaling over $32,000 (£20,159) awarded. Current monthly categories are Music Video, Song by a Duo or Band, Song by Male or Female Solo Artist, Instrumental, Sing in 30 Seconds (a cappella), Rap Battle and Stand Up comedy. Artists first upload their performances to contender rounds where 100% fan votes determines who qualifies for each monthly bracket. At the start of each month, the songs and videos with the most votes advance to the bracket, where a mix of fan votes and the discerning scores of music industry judges determines who wins. Recent winners include Turkish rock singer Aydilge, Canadian electro act Connekt, Brooklyn’s Dinosaur Feathers, Chilean singer Yael Meyer and young pop-country singer Killian – all of whom have large online followings on Facebook, Twitter,YouTube and/or Last.fm. Recent British winners include Solo Artists Cherie Morgan and Charlee Drew, and the

music video for The Disablists featuring Foreign Beggars. Other recent winners of note with great potential for success include LA rapper Dayda Bass, female vocalist Melissa VanFleet and South African rock band Chasing Friday. In 2008 Make A Star TV launched a weekly half-hour show in the states on Fuse. Make A Star TV ran for 13 episodes gaining thousands of fans and new artists culminating in a $10,000 (£6,300) grand prize on the final episode of the series. http:// www.makeastar.com/MakeAStarTV.asp To earn a spot on the show, performers uploaded their music video directly to MakeAStar.com and competed in bracket style matches with a mixture of fan votes and judge scores. Each week, MAS TV highlighted the best videos from the web competition, giving many artists an instant rise from web obscurity to national TV stardom. 29 artists advanced to the final phase of the contest, and included several names that have gone on to achieve measureable success: Authority Zero, Sick of Sarah and Friends For Hire to name a few. The final match featured Fools & Horses vs Zen Vendetta, and with a strong fan voting score, Zen Vendetta won the $10,000 (£6,300) grand prize. MakeAStar is currently preparing for a second season of TV in 2012 which will prove to be another exciting contest with prize limits exceeding the first season’s grand prize of $10,000 (£6,300).

Winners! You can enter your audio or video performances and be competing on MakeAStar.com today!


Valerie Orth

Can you tell me a little about your history?

Born and raised in New Jersey, I believe I started singing as soon as I could talk. I was in my first theater production when I was 4, and performed in musical theater until I was 20. Then I finally started sitting in with bands as a vocalist, later picked up guitar and started writing my own original songs. I also spent time studying drumming and dance in Ghana, and singing in an African diaspora a capella choir at Tufts University. I wanted to play guitar so I didn't have to depend on anyone else to perform my songs. Still, I wanted a band to fully represent my music, so I started forming bands in 2005. I met my match in 2009: Romani (ethnic Gypsy) bass player Veronika Safarova from the Czech Republic, who you see in the "Relinquish" video, and who recorded on all of our singles after my full length album, "Faraway City" (produced by Tori Amos's bass player, Jon Evans). There was a moment in my life where music wasn't entirely the center focus - I was a grassroots campaigner for various human rights non-profits and unions for years, working for social and economic justice. Now I try to tie that activism into my music, when possible. What style of music are you? Rock with a unique blend of groove, edgy folk, soul and even some reggae. It's righteous, honest,

06

and genre-bending.

Who influenced you? I've been influenced by artists as diverse as Ani DiFranco, Bjork, Zap Mama, Meshell Ndegeocello, Portishead, Jeff Buckley, Bebe, Matisyahu, Manu Chao, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Foo Fighters, and Radiohead. Where can people find out more about you? After almost 2 years spent conceptualizing and building it, we're just about to launch our new website - www.valerieorth.com check it out! It has links to all of our social networking sites, including Facebook, Twitter, Bandcamp, etc. Why did you enter Make A Star? Our fearless music video director, Jason Mongue, won the Make A Star contest last year with him music video for Shovelman. It was his suggestions to enter into Make A Star. Has it opened up any new opportunities for you? Besides this magazine article, the Make A Star contest allowed a lot more people to watch our video. We also made a video for my song "Blinding," which we hope to enter in the near future. We hope for more opportunities soon! What are your thoughts on the music industry at the moment?

Anyone can be in the game, which makes it an indie musician's market, but it also means there are a lot more artists and music to sift through. So, it's not any easier to "make it" than it's been in the past. It's just different, and challenges, strategies and techniques change constantly. What would you say to anyone looking to enter Make A Star? Do it! It's free to enter and it's another way to engage your fans. And once you do enter, make sure you constantly (and tactfully) remind your fans to vote. What is your biggest ambition? I want to share my music worldwide by having regular, successful international tours with my band -and have a team of people to book, manage and promote. Veronika and I have done all the booking, promoting and managing ourselves and it can be overwhelming - I'm sure I'll always do that type of work for the band but I want to focus more time on the music, songwriting and performing, connecting with my fans in person. I also want to add that, viewing music as a healing power unlike any other, I play often at juvenile halls, homeless shelters, drug rehabilitation centers, and high schools for "at risk" youth. The rewards go both ways - one teenage girls in a juvenile hall, said after one of my performances: “I will remember this the rest of my life.�

23


"All-girl New Yorkers Lunic make distinctive and sultry psychedelic indie with hints of downbeat British electronica acts The xx and Portishead. Mournful dashes of violin and melodic lead guitar flourishes." -NXNE Lunic is an all-female electropop band from New York City consisting of songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Kaitee Page, electric MIDI violinist Megan Berson, and live drummer, Masha Mayer. The band was formed in London, UK in early 2008 and is currently based in New York City. Lunic released their debut album, Lovethief, in May 2009 and their new album, Future Sex Drama, is coming summer 2012. Lunic has toured the US, UK, & Canada and have shared the stage with Moby, Mindless Self Indulgence, Company of Thieves, Creed, Meiko, Deluka, Hypernova, Robert Francis, Bell X1, and many more, and now they are doing Q&A with Amaze Magazine... What style of music are you? Electro indie, electro pop. Who influenced you? At the moment, we're listening to a lot of female-fronted bands like Ladytron, The xx, Warpaint, Portishead, The Kills, Lights, Garbage, Metric, The Organ Where can people find out more about you? www.LunicMusic.com Facebook.com/LunicMusic Youtube.com/iLoveLunic Why did you enter Make A Star and has it opened any opportunities up for you? We wanted to present our music video to a new audience, and it’s getting us featured on various websites and in various magazines What are your thoughts on the music industry at the moment? It is what it is. We try to celebrate the little victories along the way and make the best of it. What would you say to anyone looking to enter Make A Star? Do it! What is your biggest ambition? To spread our music to as many people as possible, worldwide.


25


About Xtra Mile Recordings are an independent record label based in London, United Kingdom. It was founded in 2003 by Charlie Caplowe and they release rock albums and singles. They signed the artists Reuben and Million Dead. On 8 August 2011 Xtra Mile were badly affected by the 2011 England riots, when the Sony Music warehouse that stored their records was set on fire, but this hasn’t stopped them from producing some great bands and we are proud to highlight some of them to you. This month we will be looking at Straight Lines, Crazy Arm, Fighting Fiction, & Jim Lockey & The Solemn Sun.


Having just won over a small army of fans on a UK tour with Canterbury and released single ‘Half Gone’; the first to be taken from the band’s second album ‘Freaks Like Us’ STRAIGHT LINES are now ready to announce the plans for their new album’s release. ‘Freaks Like Us’ was released on the 23rd April through Xtra Mile Recordings (Frank Turner, Against Me!, Far…) preceded by the single ‘Commitments’ a week earlier. As with the band’s first album, ‘Persistance In This Game’ Straight Lines new album was recorded by the band’s bassist and producer Todd Campbell at the end of 2011. ‘Half Gone’ has caused much anticipation for the record scoring ‘Single of the Week’ on Kerrang! Radio, ‘Single of the Month’ in Rock Sound magazine and was Huw Stephens 'Next Hype' on Zane Lowes BBC Radio 1 show. You can watch the video for ‘Half Gone’ on the band’s official website: www.straightlinesband.com Lead singer/guitarist Tom Jenkins says "’Freaks Likes Us’ is a 10 track straight-up rock album covered in melodies from start to finish, it draws influences from bands such as Jimmy Eat World, Weezer and At the Drive-in with an undertone of British rock from bands like Reuben, Hundred Reasons, Biffy Clyro and Yourcodenameis:milo. ‘Freaks Like Us’ is made up of songs that reflect on real stories and experiences. If you had to define the title then it basically means coming to the realisation that you're not alone in how you think or act. The songs are less personal on this album and more of an observation into the people around me.” Tour Information: MAY 11th - Volks, Brighton - Xtra Mile Recordings @ Great Escape 18th - The George, Andover w/Attack!Attack! 28th - Slam Dunk Festival, Cardiff - Main Stage JULY 12th - 2000 Trees Festival, Gloucestershire SOLD OUT 22nd – Redfest, Surrey www.straightlinesband.com & www.xtramilerecordings.com Here’s what the press had to say about the bands debut album ‘Persistence In This Game: "Sure to follow in their friends' footsteps, Straight Lines are heading straight up." - 4/5 Big Cheese “Runaway Now' and 'Say It For Your Sake' will smash into your memory within seconds, while the aggressive riffs will carry the package into your heart.” - 8/10 Rocksound For more information please contact griff@presscounselpr.com (National/Online) or anthea@presscounselpr.com (Regional) – 020 7792 9400

34


New single ‘Little Boats / ‘All Butchers Are Men’ released 21st April 2012 (to coincide with Record Store Day) Devonian roots-punk ensemble, Crazy Arm, release their new single ‘Little Boats / ‘All Butchers Are Men’ digitally through Xtra Mile Recordings in April, to coincide with Record Store Day (21st April). The song is the second to be released from their sophomore album ‘Union City Breath’. The single will also be released on limited edition 7” vinyl via Household Name Records. ‘Little Boats’ is a paean to everyday survival. Featuring Vicky Butterfield on joint vocals, it’s a confession of hopelessness with a belief in redemption, maybe even revolution. It also posits the idea that there is most probably no God but most definitely each other. The b-side, ‘All Butchers Are Men’, is one of the band’s earliest unreleased songs: a pro-feminist missive that balks at outdated symbols of male identity. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------'Union City Breath', was released in October last year. Much like its predecessor, 'Born To Ruin', it has been very well received nationwide and throughout mainland Europe by fans and critics alike. Produced and engineered by Peter Miles (The King Blues, The Computers, Sonic Boom Six), the album is a triumph of punk rock energy, alt. country vitality and rabble-rousing honesty. Not easy to categorise, and all the better for it, Crazy Arm's sound is an accumulation of decades of influence and inspiration: rooted in hardcore/punk, ‘60s protest folk/country and Springsteen-esque classic rock’n’roll. They combine this with a grass-roots political overview that embraces anti-war, antifascist and pro-community activism.

36

Reviews for 'Union City Breath': 'Blisters with energy' – KKKK Kerrang! 'You need Crazy Arm' – 5/5 Big Cheese 'A triumph from start to finish' – 9/10 Punktastic 'Delivered with a fired-up passion' – Rock Sound 'Never faltering from the pinnacle it attains from the off' – Punk News 'A patchwork blanket of musical bliss' – Room Thirteen 'This is the band to watch at the moment' – Rhythm Circus 'Supremely confident' – Sputnik Music 'Album of choice to represent Britain on the punk scene' – Alter The Press


Fast-rising Brighton quartet Fighting Fiction released their eponymous self-titled debut album and new single 'Turning Rebellion into Money' through Xtra Mile Recordings on 26th March 2012. An infectious punk rock record, ‘Fighting Fiction’ is full of politically charged articulate lyrics, powerful driving rhythms and catchy refrains. Featuring the single ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll is Dead and its Corpse is for Sale’ – which received strong support from fan Radio 1’s Mike Davies – all ten tracks pack a powerful punch, hitting you the head as well as the heart. Recorded and produced by friend and highly credited producer Mark Williams, (Oceansize, Million Dead, Yourcodenameis:milo, Biffy Clyro & Enter Shikari) ‘Fighting Fiction’ perfectly captures the band’s honesty, integrity and knack for writing a great pop punk song. With a DIY approach, their keen touring ethic has seen them play alongside Frank Turner, This Town Needs Guns, The Riot Before, The Xcerts, Laura Marling and Crazy Arm; as well as festival appearances at The Lock Up Stage at Reading and Leeds Festival, The Isle of Man TT, The Isle of Wight and 2000Trees. With support coming in thick and fast from all corners of the industry the band are set for a fantastic 2012. Ones to watch! Full UK and Europe tour to be announced soon. www.fightingfiction.com www.xtramilerecordings.com “(with) Fighting Fiction, in whose sharp songwriting there is something identifiably British, like The Clash, and they cling to their songs by their fingernails giving them a careering thrill.” KKKK from Great Escape “Upbeat yet disheartened political messages are delivered with a rough, raw, Billy Bragg-esque brogue, and suggest that they’re a band who could make a big dent – politically and musically – in the future.” The Fly 4/5 For anymore information please contact Dani, Griff and Anthea at: Press Counsel PR – 0207 7929400 Firstnames@presscounselpr.com

42

43


‘Death’ – released on 9th April 2012 through Xtra Mile Recordings – is a passionate, poetic and engaging album making them one of the most exciting new bands in British music. Produced by Peter Miles (King Blues, Crazy Arm, Futures) ‘Death’ encapsulates the band’s vast sound as the young quartet draw from a plethora of influences including alt.country folk and hardcore punk. Showcasing their incredible storytelling talent ‘Death’ takes listeners on a journey with soaring tracks such as ‘Everything And The Heart’ and ‘New Natives’ sitting elegantly with more stark songs like ‘Our Fathers’ which bring Jim’s incredible voice and lyrics to the fore. Glorious album opener, ‘England’s Dead’ – with its spiralling song structure – will follow the album and be released as a single on 2nd May 2012. In two short years these anarcho-anglo rockers have incessantly toured the country, including as main support on Frank Turner’s February 2011 UK Tour plus shows alongside the likes of Mumford & Sons, Dry the River, Johnny Flynn, Alessi’s Ark and Pete Doherty. In the 2011 they also performed at numerous festivals such as the Big Chill, Beautiful Days, Wychwood and Y-Not, including a packed performance as headliners on the second stage at 2000trees. Having played an incredible solo set at SXSW, the band will be back in force at the Xtra Mile label night ‘T’was The Night Before Wembley’ on 12th April along with Crazy Arm, Dave Hause, Ben Marwood and some very special guests.

www.facebook.com/jimlockeyandthesolemnsun & @jlandtss For more information please contact Dani and Dan at Press Counsel PR on: 020 7792 9400 dani@presscounselpr.com or griff@presscounselpr.com

44

 ull headline tour this May: F Thur 3rd The Soundhouse, Leicester Fri 4th 1 in 12, Bradford Sat 5th Royal Park Cellars, Leeds Sun 6th Stereo, York Tue 8th 93ft East, London Wed 9th Louisiana, Bristol Thur 10th The Venue, Derby Fri 11th Brighton, Volts (Great Escape) Sat 12th Guildhall, Gloucester Thur 17th The Garratt, Manchester Fri 18th The Flapper, Birmingham Fri 25th Wilmington Arms, London Sat 26th Whelan's, Dublin Sun 27th Kelly’s, Galway  PRESS "Never has music been so relevant" - BBC Introducing “...one of, if not the best, singer-songwriters I've met... they're gonna smash it in 2012." - Frank Turner "Lockey& Co... definitely ones to watch" - The Fly "Jim Lockey& the Solemn Sun could be the British Bright Eyes" - is this music?

45


X

OUR DEDICATED ART SECTION:

E HIBITION


SUSHIL SHRESTHA

Another GWC Illustrator WInner.

Sushil Shrestha was born in Kathmandu in Nepal. Sushil came to the UK when he was one year old. He found his love for Art at an early age, specializing in line and ink art, Manga/Comic Art, Nepalese Thangka Art, and Science Fiction Concept Art. He taught himself how to play guitar in two weeks and can speak three languages. At the moment he is writing and illustrating his own comic books and, as you can tell from his illustrations on these couple of pages, he is very good at what he does.

49


Take your work to as many people as possible, also partake in exhibitions, like I’ve done, across London, the UK and internationally. You may get a ‘talent’ scout routing around there!”

Buy for Kindle

Twisted Illustrator’s brand new illustratiions

Q&A

Emma gives her thoughts on illustration We asked Emma to answer some questions for us about illustration in the hope we can help to inspire some of our readers to think about illustration. What method of illustration do you prefer? I prefer digital art, although I like doing painting and mixed meda and collage. What advice would you give to any aspiring illustrators? Take your work to as many people as possible.

Also participate in exhibitions, like I’ve done across London, the UK and internationally. You may get a ‘talent’ scout routing around there! What has been the hardest piece of work you have had to complete and why? Nothing has been particularly hard, a lot of work for magazines is challenging though as you have to depict their brief to their (pretty much) exact requirements on not a lot of information given in the first place.

Emma Wallis Twisted Illustrator

Emma Wallis was trained as an illustrator at Swindon College, completing a HND course, she then went to do a HNC in Graphic Design at Kingston College. Emma has illustrated for Newtrade Publishing & publications in Canada and worldwide. She has also participated in various art exhibitions in and around London. Emma teaches art part-time and has partaken in being an artist visiting lecturer/speaker across the UK. Most recently her work was published by Pill Hill Press after becoming one of the winners of the 5ways competition the GWC Illustrator Challenge. She is also currently seeing her work illustrated in David Jacks (a winner from the Get Writing Challenge) new book available now on Amazon Kindle.


Working Together

Since joining 5ways Emma has worked with lots of new talent We first met Emma with the launch of the GWC Illustrator Challenge when she entered the competition looking to have her pictures illustrate David Jacks story ‘Teddy in the Wash’, but unfortunately for her the winner had already been chosen and so she didn’t get her drawings out for that particular story, however she did win a place in the book with the story written by 5ways Founder Tim Knight ‘Silly Sarah & her New Friend’ where she illustrated the lead characters pet.

currently working with the 5ways team on various projects including the magazine where she is networking with various organisations and she is helping to prepare for 2013’s major project ‘What’s my Story?’ which you will hear more about soon. You can take a tour of Emma’s personal website where she illustrates her art by visiting:

Lara Hilton Manager

http://www.freewebs.com/twistedillustrator Since then she has teamed up with David Jacks to illustrate his latest Amazon Kindle release ‘Little Red Fern at the Oaklympic Games’ and is

54

We hope to build a very strong relationship with Emma in the future and hope you enjoy her work

55


FIND WEBBS FINE ART GALLERY www.webbsfineartgallery.co.uk Telephone: 0207 223 1733 Email: gallery@webbsfineartgallery.co.uk


Webbs Fine Art Gallery is located in South London in the picturesque area of Clapham. We have an exhibition space of 3 floors within a Victorian building. The room settings are designed to represent a real home environment. We represent on average 65 artists in rotation giving us a stock amount of around 700 original pieces of art. These range from large oil and acrylic canvases of British and European seascapes and landscapes and London, Paris and New York cityscapes. Webbs also represents artists skilled in printmaking techniques, including engravings, etchings and silk-screen, depicting subjects from still-life to landscapes and interiors. Our gallery style can be referred to as contemporary impressionism. Our selected artists are exclusive to us in London and in some cases to our gallery in England. Webbs Fine Art has built up a long established reputation of only showing full-time professional artists, with recognised qualifications and a detailed career history. We also offer a gift range including jewellery, glass and ceramics. We have over 30 years experience in framing styles, conservation and restoration techniques working with several experts in this field. Webbs Fine Art is recognised by the Fine Art Trade Guild.

Listen to the Podcast

Gordon Breckenridge Podcast now live. Tim Knight has organised a podcast of his meeting with Gordon Breckenridge live from his exhibition at Webbs Fine Art Gallery, you can listen to it live HERE.

Amaze Interview Tim Knight from the 5ways team was invited to Webbs Fine Art Gallery in London to meet Gordon Breckenridge, an artist from Tuscany who was holding an exhibition there. He was a pleasure to meet and you can read alll about it in Edition 1 of Amaze Magazine. Please note the exhibition was called Colours of Tuscany, not Seasons of Tuscany as stated by AM.

Webbs Fine Art Gallery Address

1 Burland Road Battersea London SW11 6SA Telephone: 0207 223 1733 email: gallery@webbsfineartgallery. co.uk 56

www.webbsfineartgallery.co.uk

41 57


Maria Klochkova Illuminating the Stories

I

am a graphic designer based in London and Moscow. I love to work with books and I specialise in design of covers and layouts as well as creating illustrations. However I am experienced in all kinds of printing design including posters, magazines, flyers, catalogues, brochures, visual identity and web design. I am open to freelance work with publishing houses, design studios and advertising agencies. I am highly interested in the opportunities brought by digital shift from printed to electronic books. You can read about my ideas in paper Narrative possibilities in new type of media—e-books, where I explore multimedia nature of e-books and discuss a broad spectrum of possibilities for both the creation and reception of meaning. Experience in cinema and journalism shaped my interest in documentary genre. My first documentary film based on series of interviews with people, who are sharing their stories and memories about reading and books. My other passion is theatre and opera. I did my MA degree in Performance Design and Practice at Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design. Together with Therese Steele I am pleased to be a part of Slant Theatre Company. I found both my inspiration and the way to express myself in light design. Practice across various media made me understand that choosing the typeface for the book, the light for the scene or the angle for the camera are parts of the same exciting process—illuminating the story. Which is exactly what I like and know how to do.


GRAPHIC DESIGN By Maria Klochkova

CLICK

to view

!

Learning the ropes Thanks to Maria....

Maria was kind enough to step in and help design a demo of Amaze Magazine for us before we officially launched. The idea was to see how students could potentially be used to help create the magazine itself, although we didn’t use her design in the finished edition, it was her demo that gave us lots of inspiration for our design, and it also helped us to decide on how students could interact with the magazine and this is going to be a fundemental part of our future, so for that we thank Maria, and believe she is a shining star that deserves to be noticed and we can only hope you will take a look round her website and let her know what you think of her great work.


SLANT

Learn more about us.

Slant is a new theatrical company founded by Therese Steele and Maria Klochkova, they both met during their MA in Performance Design & Practice at Central Saint Martins and they quickly realized the compatibility of their skills and how they would lend themselves to a successful collaboration. It has been just over one year since the first production at the Cochrane Theatre and since then they have performed in venues and festivals across London, most recently at The Camden People’s Theatre in the beginning of February. Slant do a mixture of physical and narrative theatre, part scripted part devised and thoroughly research based, drawing from the diverse range of skills of Sarah Delmonte, Laura Atherton and Alice Tatge, the company’s three perfomers.

The Team

Learn more about the team at Slant...

1

In 2004 Alice Tatge completed her BA in Dance Theatre at Laban (where she also received an MA in performance in 2011).

2

Laura Atherton is an actress with strong collaborationists and devising roots with experience in both experimental, text and physical theatre.

3

Sarah Delmonte has a background in live art and has performed across the UK specializing in improvised and immersive theatre.

4

Therese Steele is the writer and director of Slant.

5

And of course Maria Klochkova.


DOCUMENTARY By Maria Klochkova

Documentary What really knocks me out is a book that, when you’re all done reading it, you wish the author that wrote it was a terrific friend of yours and you could call him up on the phone whenever you felt like it. That doesn’t happen much, though. J.D. Salinger, The Catcher in the Rye

I read where I am It is a precious collection of stories and memories from people of different professions and cultural background. They are sharing personal experience of relationship with books, which shaped, changed or even saved their lives. Participants: Trish Lyons, Sapfo Pantzaki, Pete Brooks, Garam Kim, Edward Johansson, Francesca Ulivari Music by Unknown musician from the park in Manchester Collected and edited by Maria Klochkova


T’S

LE

ABOUT CLICK 3D to view ! ANIMATION TALK

Amateur 3d Illustration By Rafeal Avila

RAFAEL AVILA GIVES HIS RUNDOWN ON HOW TO CREATE A 3D VIDEO-BOOK USING LOW COST AND FREE EQUIPMENT.

68

RAFAEL CREATED HIS OWN VIDEO AFTER CREATING A STORY FOR HIS CHILDREN AND THANKS TO HIS EFFORTS YOU CAN NOW DESIGN YOUR VERY OWN 3D VIDEO-BOOK.

69


Puddle Boy is the story of a boy who overcame bullies by learning to run in the mud. It started out as a simple bedtime story I invented on the spot one night. My sons helped turn it into our first children’s video/book. You can see it here: http://www.youtube.com/ watch?v=JNkfZ59DNWM Any good 3D illustrator will tell that if your goal is to create good 3D art, then patience is an absolute prerequisit. Clearly, I have no patience. Everyone has their own reasons to forego patience. My reasons revolve around unfulfilled childhood dreams, a recent heart attack, and a promise to my two young sons to see our book/video through to completion. I can still remember vividly the illustration of a whale my father drew for the front cover of the children’s book we started when I was 8 years old. I can also vividly recall the huge pile of bills and household paperwork that quickly buried that illustration. I guess whales really can drown. Fast forward to a few months after my 40th birthday when I had a heart attack out of the blue (no family history of heart disease, never smoked, rarely drink, regularly exercise, etc.) Check out that story here: http:// beyondheartdisease.blogspot. com/.

70

Essentially the heart attack gave me a kick in the pants to get some bucket list items checked off sooner rather than later. But my real motivator came when both of my sons (then 6 and 10 yrs old) asked if I would help them turn one of our favorite bedtime stories that we came up with into a movie. So I quickly set about to create the 3d movie, Puddle Boy.

be frugal and seek free resources first.

Here’s how we did it.

Hexagon is a program that allows you to modify 3D objects such as props and characters, for example adding a hump to your story’s hunch-backed character. Bryce allows you to create larger 3D elements, such as terrains, environments, forests, oceans, etc.

For the past dozen years or so, I had been using a very simple piece of 3d software, called Asymetrix Web 3D, to help me make simple 3d illustrations. As a manager at a food supplement manufacturing company, I often had to create illustrations for concepts that were difficult to convey in words. Asymetrix was a very simple and very limited piece of software, but it got the job done. About seven years ago I discovered more robust software from a website known as Digital Art Zone, or DAZ3d. But, at the time, I felt it was far too complicated for my casual interest in 3D illustration. Before my quest to create Puddle Boy, I had never attempted to create anything as complex. Consider multiple complex scenes, characters, poses, camera angles and complicated lighting. Asymetrix was definitely not up to the task. So I returned to DAZ, www.daz3d.com and was amazed at how much was available for free. By the way, 3D illustrating can cost you an arm and a leg, so it is always best to

Three indispensible pieces of software, currently offered free at DAZ are DAZ Studio,Hexagon, and Bryce. DAZ Studio is a feature-packed 3D environment that allows you to set up 3D props, characters, bacdrops, lights, cameras and more within its virtual space.

Another very important piece of free software is called Blender. Blender allows you to do many of the same things that the above three programs do. But it is layed out very differently, with so many powerful features packed in that it practically loses all ability to allow intuitive learning. So, why have it? It is excellent at converting from one file format to another. You see, beyond all of the powerful free software, the growing availability of inexpensive or free 3D models is what really makes today’s 3D landscape so spectacular for amateure illustrators. Even with years of practice and proficiency, it can take months to create something as simpe as a mud puddle. But if someone has already created something similar, then it can shave 90% or more off of the time it would have taken you to create it yourself.

I say 90% because you may still need that remaining 10% to modify the 3D model for your own needs. There are literally dozens of great sites offering free 3D models. Some of the best places I’ve found are: www.DAZ3D.com www.sharecg.com www.turbosquid.com http://sketchup.google. com/3dwarehouse/ You may find the perfect football helmet or kitchen table for your story at one of these sites. But it may be in a format that cannot be imported into your primary environment (e.g. DAZ Studio). Or it may be in a format that does not allow you to modify it to suit your needs. In that case, you may be able to import the object into Blender and then export it from Blender into a format that is compatible. The first course of business would be to learn the software platform you intend to use to hold your set and render images or video clips. For absolute beginners, I recommend playing around with DAZ Studio for a while. Try downloading any of the free

models from DAZ3D. Victoria is a great free model from DAZ3D, and it automatically loads into your DAZ Studio content directories after downloading. So it is an easy model with which to get started. Under “Content Library” simply navigate to Figures/DAZ People/ and click on Victoria. She will appear in the main viewport. Depending on your version of DAZ Studio, it should look something like the screen shot above. Many humanoid models have poses that are adaptable to other humanoid models. Sometimes you can apply poses for one model to an entirely different model. I find the above toon model in a feminine pose quite fetching. Wouldn’t you agree? Actually, I was going for comedic effect. But some artists may be after a sexy pose. In that case, I’ve learned that www.mostdigitalcreations.com has a lot of adult themed content, including poses. Some are even available for free. Whatever the pose, it may not work perfectly, but even if it gets your character halfway to the pose you envision, that could save you a lot of time.

You can then make adjustments to andy limb or joint to get your character into the correct pose. To do this, click on the “Universal Manipulation Tool.” I’ve circled it in red in the screen shot on the next page. That will engage the odd looking user interface pointed out by the red arrow at the bottom right corner of the same screen shot. If you don’t see the interface, then click on the “Scene” tab and click on the character’s listing, which I’ve pointed out with another red arrow. Try clicking and dragging various parts of the Universal Manipulator Tool’s interface. Dragging arrows and corners will move the figure. Arcs will rotate it. And blocks will increase the size. Note that the center block increases the size in all directions. But any of the colored blocks will stretch the figure in the direction of its associated arrow. After you have the whole character model selected, you can then try clicking on sub-components of the model. So for example, if you click on its hand, the interface will then shift to the hand alone. Now you can manipulate the position and rotation of just the hand alone.

71


So now you have some basic skills to manipulate models. Next, you will want to import multiple models to create a scene, and try positioning and posing your characters and props. When you have a scene just right, save it immediately. Then click on the “Render” button. This will take a snapshot from the angle you see in your view port. There are many more tools and skills you will want to learn about and use. Of course I cannot get into most of them. The basic skills and tools I’ve covered here are still very powerful and can be used to great effect. Now back to the story of how we created Puddle Boy. Earlier in our quest, we story-boarded the 72 script with pencil and paper. If

you’re following this as a guide, don’t worry about artistic abilities at this point. Stick figures will suffice. With freshly acquired DAZ Studio skills and a rudimentary storyboard script in hand, we were almost ready to get started. Of course, “almost” is a very relative term here. I know of a whole country that got invaded because it almost had weapons of mass destruction. Anyway, we spent the next several months acquiring and developing the landscapes, sets, props and characters to fit the story. All the while, we improved our DAZ Studio skills. As I have hinted at, these days 3D artists create their masterpieces by purchasing some elements, downloading

some for free and building others from scratch. But don’t worry that purchasing 3D models may sacrifice your originality as an artist. Even if you purchase all of the elements of your scene, there’s still plenty of room for originality in your art. The infinite ways in which you can set up surfaces, lighting, camera angles, posing, fog, shadows, transparency, etc, will still allow you to create truly unique scenes. An analogy would be an artistic photographer. Even though other photographers may have published photos of a particular model, each subsequent photographer still has the ability to create new art with that same model, using different props, backdrops clothes, camera settings, etc.

But, even if you are a devout purist, who refuses to work with any models that may be used by others, fear not. Most of the purchased 3D models you can buy are modifiable in some way, such that you can make them unique. BTW – While searching for the perfect 3D models for our scenes, we came across a lot of other interesting models that we didn’t specifically need at that time. DAZ3D.com is notorious for having limited time offers of freebies and items on sale. Once the special offer is removed, no begging or pleading will allow you to avail yourself of the items on sale or free. (I missed out on a great gorilla model that way. I have no use for a gorilla at the moment. But I know it would be

a fun toy to have.) In retrospect, I wish we had saved all of the fun models I’ve come across. Who knows? I may need them for future projects. And be sure to carefully store everything you download in a highly organized and systematic way. With hundreds or thousands of models in your collection, sloppy filing can render many of them practically inaccessible. Now that we had collected or created most of the props we needed, we were truly ready to start setting up scenes. The plan was to simply replace each storyboard sketch with a 3D scene rendering. But what we discovered along the way was that it is very easy to show additional camera angles and other story elements you had not

envisioned prior to setting up the scene. For example, we discovered that one scene allowed multiple camera angles to portray a conversation between the hero and his friend in the school gym locker room. Check out the three different camera angles within the same scene below. They are all simply derived from a single setup, based on the first sketch I showed you earlier in this article. After the initial setup, each rendering took only a couple of minutes. But if I tried to sketch each one, it might have taken me the better part of an hour or more.

73


These images from a scene in Puddle Boy have some good examples of the 3 basic ways of getting models for your scenes: Downloading models made by others – The dark haired character standing up is a direct upload of the standard toon character. The walls and floor are parts of a home apartment scene I downloaded. Modifying downloaded models made by others in order to make them unique – The main character, sitting down, is a

modified version of the basic toon model. I changed the shape of the face and added a cleft chin. The bench was originally a table I got from a free download. But I shrunk it and stretched it in one direction to make a handy locker room bench. Making models from scratch – Remember that old Asymmetric program I mentioned? Well it happens to be very good for carving up blocks and simple figures. I used it to create all the lockers in the scene. It can only

export in VRML format, which is incompatible with all of the free software I have, except for Blender. So I exported my lockers, and then imported them into Blender. From there, it was fairly easy to export in the Wavefront obj format, which is easily imported into DAZ Studio. String a bunch of these image renderings together in your favorite video editing software, and viola! You have a children’s video book!


Naomi Avsec

DOES SOME Q&A FOR AMAZE MAGAZINE What do you do? I am an artist & embroiderer. I paint and I LOVE to doodle - I also use my sewing machine like a drawing implement, a bit like doodling but with thread instead! I have just had a very successful exhibition in Tokyo at Paul Smith's Space Gallery called 'Doodles, Dreams & Stitchery'. This subsequently led onto my most recent exhibition 'Send me a Postcard' at Paul Smith's GLOBE at Terminal 5, Heathrow which ended in November. I am currently making pieces for Selvedge Christmas Fair on December 10th in Highgate. What is your best piece of work?

Naomi Avsec

The artist & illustrator. London based artist and illustator Naomi Avsec creates an array of artworks using recycled embriodery on a sewing machine. Do you have a pretty pooch, charismatic cat or photogenic fish? You could have your favourite (or not) friend immortalised forever into a fabric family heirloom. Naomi has made a series of Love Letters and ‘Dog Portraits’ for Liberty and collaborated extensively for Paul Smith which lead to her solo exhibition at his Space Gallery in Tokyo. Currently naomi is working on a series of dog portraits for a private client, however, she welcomes all pets! She can even incorporate your favourite and special piece of material to make it that keepsake to treasure forever! Commissions start from £750 and there is a variety of wys to contact her: Call: 07956 481213 Email: naomi.avsec@gmail.com Website www.ilovespoon.co.uk Painting website: www.naomiavsec.co.uk

Gosh that's a very hard question..........I have old favourites then some of my more recent paintings/ artworks hopefully pip them to the post and become the new favourites/best pieces.......on a personal level my darker paintings have a special place in my heart, I find them more exciting than something that is just 'attractive' or 'easy on the eye' - in fact Rob and Liz own 'Pig Farmer' - see attached which is pretty dark but full of life and grit. I also love 'After Dark' which is quite a few years old which is based on a Sicilian cemetery with all the spirits coming out at night. More recently I have a fondness for 'Wonderland' which is pure escapism to a land I would like to live in full of colour and strange creatures - I feel really happy when I look at this picture. 'Golden Syrup' is made of fabric and stitch as is 'Planet Revolts' - they just really work!............. You see, it's a hard question, What advice would you give someone looking to break into your industry? Firstly you have to really want to be an artist as in you don't want to do anything else - it's got to be your driving force and secondly, don't expect to be particularly solvent - you learn quite quickly that you have to be very resourceful.....aim high too, be bold and approach everyone!! and enjoy it!!

Tip!


Cover Star April ‘12

Paige is our April ‘12 cover star .

The team at 5ways are proud to announce Paige as our winner for this months Cover Star competition. An aspiring model, she can light any room with her great pictures! If you want to enter next months Cover Star competition then feel free to send us your images, they should be large jpgs and sent to timknight81@gmail.com, the winning picture will be featured on the cover of Amaze Magazine! We will accept photos like the ones Paige has done, and we will also also accept illustrations and whatever you think is

suitable for a front cover of a magazine, so really get your thinking caps on and we can’t wait to see what you come up with. All entrants must sign a disclaimer form (which will be sent to you upon receiving your entry) and the images must be owned by the person who sends them. The cut off date is the 20th May 2012 and entries after this date will not be considered. For full terms & conditions visit the 5ways FAQ page.


GIMP is a FREE versatile graphics manipulation package. This page should help you get a taste of what GIMP is capable of. You can also have a look on the website for further information.


LINUX Multimedia Studio is a FREE music creator and you can download it by clicking this page


Film Realm Pictures Zomblies

Vimeo

When a private militia’s rookie zombie hunters send out a distress call, it’s up to the Rangers to cross The Wall and bring them back, as well as uncover the truth about a

Tutorials

terrifying new breed of zombie. Bewitched mill-workers, shambling corpses and rage-fuelled mobs; Zombies have evolved as their own unique form of cinema, bringing the un-dead to life countless times for the enjoyment of the living. Zomblies continues this rich tradition with its unique exploration of the evolution of zombie-cinema in a balls-tothe-wall film spectacular!

Underwater Realm

Amaze Interview

The Kickstarter-funded collection of film shorts

Tim Knight from the 5ways team was lucky enough to catch up with the Realm Pictures team and do an interview with them for the 5ways Youtube channel where they talked about how they crowdfunded the Underwater Realm project and their perspective of the film industry from the eyes of a newly emerging talent.

The Underwater Realm used the popular crowdfunding platform Kickstarter to raise funds to develop a series of short films set entirely underwater. The films will use a variety of techniques from underwater photography to wire-rigs, digital clothing and set extensions, taking advantage of the worlds latest technology including shooting on a Red Epic camera and filming in locations such as Pinewood Studios, and some elements will be in 3d too. You can follow the progress of the films production by visiting their website www.theunderwaterrealm.com and there are a variety of ways to get involved with the team and film, so it is most definately worth checking out.

LINK: http://www.youtube.com/user/5waysMedia/videos

Tip!

1

The Realm Pictures team teach you how to build a Kino-flo style fluorescent soft light with parts from your local DIY store for around £60.00 and in under three hours as part of their regular blog series and it is a great example of the way in which they will go all out to help everybody and not just themselves.

98

2

In this tutorial created for Philipbloom.net, Eve talks you through simple to advanced lighting setups that are easy to achieve and produce beautiful results. She explains simply, how to get the most from your existing lights and some quick tips to creative a really impressive shot. It is part one of a three part series and so its a really great tutorial series.

3

As part of their regular blogs Dave & old school friend/tech guru Steve Barrow start building a £68,000 media storage server for under £3,000 that will allow the team to achieve a Red Epic post production workflow that is safe, secure & fast.

Tip!

Nam inum alia adicia Am ipsapid mi, eici Tem

1

As the Creative Director for Realm Pictures, Dave is responsible for making sure everyone is pulling together. Twitter : @DavidMReynolds.

Nam inum alia adicia Am ipsapid mi, eici Tem

2

Eve is the Director of Photography and Editor at Realm. Hers are the eyes the story will be told through. You can follow Eve on twitter at @EveHazelton.

3

Shaz is in charge of

Production Design and VFX – which is no easy task on such a big project. You can follow Shaz on twitter at @ShazAbdullah.

4

Mark is responsible for recreating the look of underwater motion with wirework...

99


Tip!

Tip!

Nam inum alia adicia Am ipsapid mi, eici Tem

5

Jenny is our Special Effects Supervisor. That means any effects that we need to achieve in camera are generally down to her to figure out.

Nam inum alia adicia Am ipsapid mi, eici Tem

6

Rob is responsible for the musical interpretation of our aquatic story. You can follow Rob on twitter at @RobWestwood.

Pinewood Studios www.pinewoodgroup.com

The Pinewood group is synonymous with world class British and international productions, their studios have an impressive heritage and have been home to some of the most successful features films and TV shows ever made.

7

Sarah is the project costume designer – responsible for design and researching historical authenticity.

8

Jon is the Producer. He makes sure everything is executed creatively, on budget and on time. You can follow Jon on twitter at @JonathanDupont.

There is a train of thought that society is broken, that the economy will continue to shrink and that good jobs will become harder to find and even harder to keep. Startacus does not accept this philosophy. We believe there are thousands of hard-working & self-starting individuals coming up with innovative and exciting ways that they can create jobs for themselves, and

others. Startacus will bring self starters together, to empower, celebrate & encourage the idea maker, innovator & thinker; to help, motivate and develop a creative community & culture. When Startacus rises, you will be able to join a community that will give you the inspiration, support & motivation

to help your ideas, grow, walk & then run... You will be joining a community that bridges the gap between you, the self starter & the resources you need to flourish, where you can collaborate with other community members to make your ideas and projects, an actual reality.

Links: www.startacus.com http://theemployable.com/2012/03/12/the-rise-of-startacus-the-online-community-celebrating-the-self-starter-coming-soon/


I have a GOOD feeling about this

The film trying to gain IndieGoGo funding asks for help in April 2012 Well if you’ve seen our promo, you’ve seen what we can do with £300. We’re asking for $15000 (£9000) to make a micro budget feature to promote through contacts I’ve made at Hurricane Films and get the film screened at as many events and festivals as possible. We’ve chosen the fixed 30 day option for our campaign because in order to complete the film and fulfill our perks, we would need at least $15000. We don’t want to waste anybody’s time or money, so if you donate and we don’t meet our target in 30 days, you get a full refund. Simple as that.

I have a bad feeling about this Synopsis. “Not that long ago. In a suburb not that far away...”

In order for the film to be cost effective we need to shoot it through the summer months. We expect the shoot (including second unit) to take about 32 days. Depending on how quickly we move through pre-production, we hope to have everything for the film shot by September 2012, and have the film completed and ready to find a distributor by the end of Summer 2013.

Rewards for YOU The team behind the film are offering a variety of rewards for helping to fund the project which you can find on their IndieGoGo page .

“I Have a Bad Feeling About This” is a quirky, upbeat, buddy-comedy/Sci-Fi adventure. The story follows the exploits of Andy & Sam, two Star Wars-obsessed slackers in their early twenties, living in the suburbs of Liverpool. Same is soon to be leaving Andy to go to university, but before they part ways for good, Andy and Same must embark on a journey to the furthest reaches of town, to try and find a pair of tickets to a one-off showing of the original Star Wars trilogy. Along the way they meet dodgy ticket touts, angry yoga instructors, deranged thieves, clueless police, the surburban-mafia and a dangerous Light-saber-wielding madman. In the tradition of “Spaced” and “Clerks” and with a dollop of “The Inbetweeners” for good measure, “I Have a Bad Feeling About This” is a feel-good tale about friends, not wanting to grow up and realising that sometimes... you don’t have to.

102

103


Wolf-Hawk Writing

If we write it they will come

CLICK TO BUY Find out how to buy these books..

Our dream is a nomination for an oscar David & Daniel strive for bigger & better things.

“Our ultimate goal is to get one of our stories made into a film and get recognition of the highest order, an oscar nomination. We don’t want the award, a nomination will suffice. iWolf-Hawk Writing consists of two authors. David Jacks & Daniel Morrow. They have been a scribing partnership for over eight years.

104

They have a passion for penning children’s stories, the first being titled ‘Not So Scary Spider’ - Tale after tale followed and rejection after rejection from publishers and agents. An innovative move from the pair brought about some light at the end of the never ending tunnel of darkness though. The London Book Fair. A chance for them to personally pitch their stories face-to-face with people in the publishing game. Amazingly they had two books accepted ‘Mummy’s Big Tummy’ and ‘Jamma’s Wish To Plant A Forest’. The the downfall, both the publishers crashed in the recession and both books failed to hit the shelves. Team Wolf-Hawk got off the canvass and

continued for the hunt for the holy grail. 5ways & Tim Knight eased the journey by getting 20 of their stories published in a fantastic anthology by Pill Hill Press named ‘A Collection of Children’s Adventure & Suspense Stories’ which meant at last they were published! Today the Wolf-Hawk lads are focusing on Kindle books and going down the self-publishing route. They currently have three books for sale on Amazon, ‘Iris Investigates: Beastly Goings On In Pelican Wharf’ - a modern day version of Hitchcock’s film ‘Rear Window’, ‘Enzo Flashfire: The Birth Of Spyridon Five’ - a BMX Superhero book and a polar bear adventure ‘My Bus Driver Is A Polar Bear’ - all books are a first in a series and range from 7-13 year olds. ‘Belstarr The Lost Toymaker’ is a christmas book in progress, coming December 2012.

www.wolfhawkwriting.com www.thespyridonfive.com www.mybusdriverisapolarbear.com Youtube: jacksie9 Twitter: Wolfhawkwriting Facebook: wolf-hawk writing


Q&A with Daniel Morrow iWhat inspired you to become a writer?

Do you have any other passions?

I have always enjoyed creative writing since I was a child. I remember being totally captivated during English Literature lessons.

I would love to write a song for one of my favourite bands. Apart from being a published author that would be my other personal goal.

BUY

Our brand new book created by the winners of the Get Writing You can order our brand new book from all good online retailers including Amazon & Pill Hill Press. ‘A Collection of Children’s Adventure & Suspense Stories’ showcases the best new writing talent from around the UK thanks to our competition that was launched last year.

What genre of writing do you like the most? My favourite genre from a readers point of view is horror as theres something about reading a terrifying book at night that makes it exciting. It would be a huge challenge to write a horror novel that was genuinely gripping.

Look our in our April edition for news relating to the brand new GWC launchings soon.

FAST 5 interview

Who is your favourite author? Richard Laymon.

Tim Knight

If you could meet any writer who would it be? I would love to meet Dean Koontz as I have a few questions regarding some of the characters from his books.

Advertise Reach

a new audience with an advert in

5ways are proud to announce your chance to advertise with us and we have a variety of great options for you that will be good for your wallet and good for your business in general. You can choose between a double a4 page, a single a4 page, a small banner, or even product placement or advertising on our website. The prices can be as low as just £75 and you can get a complete design service from our team. EVERY advertiser can even take advantage of a great range of extra benefits including being placed on our Friends of 5ways page, and

106

with us

Amaze Magazine.

being awarded our special 5star logo, just to name a few... Our friendly team offer a personalised service and we even include a late entry service at no extra cost. Adverts should be placed by the 20th of the month you wish to advertise, and the advert should be sent as a jpg file to: timknight81@gmail.com You can also call 01803 459689 but please be aware our team are out the office quite a lot so don’t be offended if we don’t answer.

Meet our Founder Tim Knight who has helped bring Amaze Magazine to life. Tell us why you started Amaze Magazine... Basically the idea behind the project is to give students/creative types who are just starting out a voice, I kept reading creative magazines that focused on the industry once your qualified and realised there was nothing out there that focused on those trying to break into the industry and given our current climate I thought it would be an important thing to offer. How hard has it been to get the magazine off the ground? Well the idea has been knocking around for quite a few years now in one form or another, I think it takes the idea behind the 5ways website to a new level and once the

magazine idea was decided upon it really started an inspiring journey that has taken probably, realistically about three years to get off the ground. What has been the biggest challenge? We want to ensure that everyone can get featured and we want to make the project self-sustainable, so finding a way to do this was pretty hard as we had no idea about how to approach advertisers and it was just lucky that we made a few good contacts early on who were able to advise us and help shape the project you see today. What advice would you give to someone looking to do something similar? I would say plan, plan, plan and don’t

be afraid to take baby steps at first, rushing it will not get you anywhere. If you were looking to do a magazine I would suggest looking at platforms like this one and maybe teaming up with them, the market is packed full of just about every magazine you could imagine, so teaming up and working together is defo something I would suggest doing if possible. What is your creative passion? Well I have never considered myself a ‘creative type’ to be honest, more of a wannabe, everything I can do is selftaught and I don’t have any formal qualifications in creative media... If I had to say one thing I passionately love it would be independent music, those who are still hungry and trying to get signed often do some amazing stuff.

107


5ways launched the Get Writing Challenge last year which looked to find the best writing to complete a book of children’s suspense & adventure stories which would be published by an american publishing company called Pill Hill Press and released to online retailers.

Pill Hill Press bought a “haunted house” in 2007 in Western Nebraska and decided to convert part of the old, spooky Victorian into a small press that celebrates speculative fiction and now have a variety of open submissions available for people to take part in and books to buy from their excellent authors.

Specialising in horror, suspense, dark fantasy and science fiction the GWC was a first for them too but they have been excellent in helping us create a wonderful challenge for our creative community and to thank them we have given them this special feature in the first edition of our magazine.

BUY

This great new book Another Wild West... an anthology of alternative history short fiction. Includes twelve short stories: Not for Sale by Rob Rosen, The Bloodhound and the Magician by Charles Moulton, Executioner by Edward Massey, Bloody Kansas by Glen Singer, Perfect Hindsight by H.J. Hill, Galveston by Jackson Kuhl, Sign of the Times by Lori Van Pelt, The Humbling by Paul Starkey, Star Scratcher's Catch by Richard Holinger, The Pecos Stop by Robert Neilson, Peacemaker by Spencer Carvalho and Abraham West by Toni Denis. Experience the Wild West all over again... like you never have before!

www.pillhillpress.com

108

WE SHIP WORLDWIDE! United States & United Kingdom Shipping Rates: Orders up to $24.99 - $7.99 Orders $25.00 and up - FREE SHIPPING! International Delivery: (Outside of the United States & United Kingdom) Orders up to $24.99 - $9.99 Orders $25.00-$49.99 - $14.99 To place an order by check or money order, please email pillhillpress@gmail.com for details.


The Writers’ Workshop

Tel: 0845 459 9560 Email: info@writersworkshop.co.uk

From Here to Publication

What we do The Writers' Workshop is the world's leading consultancy for first time writers. We offer: • Tough, honest editorial advice • Help with literary agents, where work is strong enough • Writing and self-editing courses • The annual Festival of Writing Who we are Our editorial team comprises professional authors, screenwriters and former commissioning editors at major publishing houses. The firm was set up by Harry Bingham (top right), himself a bestselling author of both fiction and non-fiction. Harry's work has been published in the UK, the US, Australia, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, China, Japan and numerous other territories besides. He has been short-and long-listed for major literary awards. His Getting Published is the standard work on the subject. Our editors We recruit only the very best editors - ones who have between them published 100s of books, and have won or been shortlisted for numerous awards, including: • Orange Broadband • Orange New Writer • Whitbread Best Book • Hawthornden • Betty Trask • Crime Writers Ass'n Best First Novel • Sinclair Prize • Guardian Fiction • Authors' Club Best First Novel • Commonwealth Writers 1st Novel • Goss First Novel • Pendleton May Best First Novel • Guardian Children's Fiction • Oxford-Weidenfeld Translation Prize • Dazed & Confused Most Promising Author • Esquire/Waterstones Non-fiction • PEN/JR Ackerley Autobiography • Radio 4 Writer of the Year • RNA New Writers • WHS Thumping Good Read • and many others Our film consultants We also work with screenplays, and our film & TV team includes screenwriters who have sold work to Miramax, Working Title, Film4, the BBC, ITV, the Film Council, ABC, CBS, Icon, Gorgeous, and many more besides. Between them, our team is responsible for hundreds of hours of screened entertainment. Our connections As the largest firm of our kind, we are probably also the best connected. We run the industry’s leading Festival of Writing. We have superb connections with literary agents & film agents. We also work with some of the world’s leading publishers.

110

111


Geraldine McCaughrean

Amaze Magazine talks to the world famous children’s author.

Tell us a little about yourself I have always written. When I was young, I did it without any expectation of getting published – always the best way to treat any secret longing, I find. My brother had a book published when he was 14, but then he was super-talented and I was not. Still, if you do something for long enough, with a passion, you’re inclined to get better at it.. As a teenager, I submitted several adult books which were (not surprisingly) rejected. It was not until I tried children’s books that I managed to wriggle my way into print. Interestingly, once I had won

112

the Whitbread Prize for the first time, I was able to break into the adult market as well, with five novels. I’d love to have done more, but the world of adult books is a bit glitzy for me – a bit exaggerated in its hopes and vocabulary. You need to be someone of interest in your own right – witty and urbane, preferably with a dark past or an interesting love life. The world of children’s books is more straighttalking, straightforward, and better suited to my Protestant work ethic. And once you have made a name for yourself in children’s books, it rather excludes you from the adult market. You become an honorary ‘child’ in the eyes of

adult publishers (well, in the eyes not a job: it’s either a therapy or of everybody, in actual fact) . a delight or an obsession. (Fiction, I mean, not If I had my time again, I would non-fiction.) I know a few write more for adults instead of authors who look on it as a job writing adult books and and can write copy by-the-yard, fortuitously getting them but not very many. published by children’s publishers. Adults like my books With self-publishing becoming more than children do, but I mainstream now, how do you never achieved ‘cross-over’ feel it affects the industry? status – the major regret of my career. I think it will become very hard for the reading public to find What advice would you give to ‘quality’ writing. What will a student/creative type looking replace the filters that editors to break into the industry? and publishers’ readers represent currently? Mind you, Unless you would go on writing publishers have done regardless of whether or not you themselves no favours lately by are published, don’t bother. It’s being so

unimaginative and derivative in what they commission: more of the same, endless series, trilogies, the usual suspects…. I hope that, for the prospective reader, self-publishing does not turn into an endless trawl through shoals of mediocrity in order to find something worth reading. That would be enough to put anyone off reading altogether. There again, given the Catch 22 situation of how hard it is to get published unless you have already been published, I do appreciate that there are some very fine writers out there who have never been afforded that

lucky leap out of the slush pile. Children’s books are particularly prone to the ‘partial critic syndrome’. I cannot tell you how many books for the young have been offered for publication “because my children just love them when we read them together”. Partial critics can be horribly misleading about a book’s merits. There is no substitute for constructive criticism from an impartial expert witness. And that is And that is what editors are for. How do you illustrate your stories? Publishers don’t like you to meet

113


your illustrator when writing a picture book text. (Maybe they think we will cook up some other book between us and bound away into the sunset, hand-inhand.) Anyway, several of my illustrators I have never even met. I do know that when it comes to picture books the artwork comes first – not necessarily chronologically, but morally. The words must be servants to the pictures. A picture-book text is more akin to writing poetry than prose, because it is so condensed. Every word has to count. A ‘nice little story’ will never cut it as a picture book. But don’t get me started on cover illustrations. They are the

114

bane of every author’s life. You get no say in the one aspect that will decide whether or not your reader ever picks up the book in the shop or clicks on it on the screen. “We do hope you like it as much as we do,” is the sentence I have come to fear most in a letter from a publisher. Why do your stories appeal to children? How could others appeal to children too? It was once suggested to me that something needs to happen on every page of a children’s book. I try to keep this in mind while I write. Because of my own nature, my main protagonists tend to be

timid and lacking in self belief at the start of the book and go on, by way of adventure, to discover they are capable of much more than they thought possible. Most children tend to nurse self-doubts, so I suppose I take them somewhere else and invest them with the kind of qualities they would like to have: resourcefulness, bravery, popularity, energy…then bring them safe home at the end. Pace is an absolute necessity with children. Maybe it shouldn’t be – that there should be slow, elegiac, thoughtful books around - but I doubt they would thrive in competition with TV and video games. That said, a book should

be a different experience from TV or video, because there is a different process going on in the brain. Nothing generalised can be said about writing for children, though, because it depends what age of child/book you are talking about. Young children want gentle familiarity, interesting, euphonious words, repetition and the ending they were hoping for. Older children want to be startled, scared, excited, revolted, entertained and taken on a rick-rack ride towards an unpredictable ending. A wonderful editor once told me that the only difference between writing for adults and for children

is that you owe it to the child to leave him or her within a safe universe. The road needs to rise at its end, not to dip down to perdition or simply peter out. Is there anything you would tell other writers to avoid? Authorial voice. Being boring. Long digressions from the plot for the purpose of philosophical reflection. Badly integrated research. Attempts to educate the reader. Explaining what a word means. Trying to get ‘down wiv the kids’. Oh, and quoting from any song – it costs a packet in copyright fees, and authors are contractually required

to pay these themselves. Who are your favourite writers? For adults: Michael Frayn, Rose Tremain, Christopher Fry, Marquez, Paul Theroux, Gill Rowe Townsend, Mervyn Peake, Clive James (his poetry), Rostand, Francis Spufford…. For children: Frank Cottrell Boyce, Hilary McKay, Philip Reeve, Jamila Gavin, Jan Mark, David Almond, Sharon Creech, Chris Riddell, Mal Peet, Philip Ardagh, Bruce Coville…

115


Send a Script Submitting your original script to us

Welcome to the Script Room, our brand new system for receiving unsolicited original scripts. We’ve changed from a rolling submissions system to one with three annual windows when we will accept writers’ work. The Spring 2012 Script Room submissions window is now open - it closes at 5pm on May 21st 2012. Before sending us your script, please familiarise yourself with our Sending Your Script guidelines, our new Terms and Conditions and our FAQs. All scripts must must be accompanied by a completed Script Room coversheet which you can download from our How to Send Your Script page.

116

117


BBC Writers Academy 2012 BBC Drama Production | Deadline: May 3, 2012 The BBC Drama Writers Academy 2012 is now open for applications from writers who have had at least one professional drama commission. Do you want to write for EastEnders, Casualty, Holby City and Doctors? Do you want training across BBC One’s flagship shows and a springboard to write across the entire range of the BBC’s drama output? Our Continuing Dramas are the backbone of Drama production. From emotionally gripping story-lines to compelling cliff-hangers, BBC’s continuing drama is renowned for its quality as well as its popularity. Here at the BBC, we’re looking for interesting and original writers who can build on the success of our flagship shows. Now in its eighth year, the Academy is a major initiative aimed at discovering and training the next generation of writers for BBC One drama Who can apply? Eight writers are selected out of hundreds of applicants. Our focus is on finding writers with a strong original voice. To succeed, you’ll need to be capable of creating believable characters and compelling storylines and communicating them through strong, emotional dialogue. Your experience could be in film, TV, radio or theatre, but you must have had at least one professional (paid) drama commission. You’ll also demonstrate a passion for television drama, particularly our flagship shows. Find out more about previous BBC Drama Writers Academy graduates in the Writers Academy page on our website. Keep up-to-date with the latest news from the Writers Academy by following their twitter account: @BBCWritersAcad How to apply To apply for this year's Writers Academy, complete the application form now available on the BBC Careers website. You should have ready a full-length sample of your original writing and evidence of your previous paid drama commission (such as a copy of a contract or a letter from a production company) saved together as one file (Word or PDF). Deadline: 3rd May 2012

118

The end is in the beginning and yet you go on Samuel Beckett 119


We fundraise in memory of my daughter, Erin, who passed away in December 2011, aged 22 days. So far we have raised over £6000 for Ronald McDonald House at Alder Hey Childrens Hospital and we are also fundraising for The Alder Hey Imagine Appeal and The Turner Syndrome Support Society. You can find out more information about our fundraising from my blog www.erinsgift.blogspot.co.uk and you can follow me on twitter @ErinsGift. We are currently seeking donations of auction items for our Imagine Appeal charity auction in October 2012.

The Erin Award

An exclusive award for those who have lost and want to remember. Amaze Magazine is proud to announce the Erin Award in memory of Erin Clancy, every month we will give away a free ad space to one of our tweeter followers who have lost someone they love worth £500 to ensure that everyone can hear their stories. Tim Knight said “We first heard about Erin through Twitter when someone RT one of Anna Clancy’s tweets, I decided to read more about it and was moved at her story and felt I wanted to do all I could to help those wanting to ensure the memory of their loved ones lived on. It may be a small gesture, but we hope it will do some good in the long run to help those fundraising to hit their targets.” Amaze Magazine is proud to offer this brand new service thanks to Erin’s Gift.

120

How to win To win the award all you need to do is follow @Timknight81 on Twitter and RT the link to Amaze Magazine. The team will then choose one campaign at random to get a free feature article just like the one on the following page.

www.erinsgift.blogspot.co.uk After a particularly rough day, how do you raise your spirits? Erin's death is so recent that I find it hard to raise my spirits and all days are rough. I am able to find some comfort from being with my loved ones and talking about Erin and all that she gave us in her short life. I also look through the many photos that we took of her and try to lose myself in memories from the days when she seemed well and when you wouldn't have known there was anything wrong with her. I also find comfort in searching for quotes and sayings on the internet that describe my feelings and I often post these on my blog. Finally, the friends that I have found through twitter are able to raise my spirits. I have been able to make contact with other women who have experienced similar loss to myself and benefit greatly from their friendship.

You must be fundraising for a cause, and/or be a registered charity. Good luck.

121


Erin's Gift

The story of my daughter Erin and our mission to raise money for charities close to our hearts in her memory. A friend asked if I wanted to talk about the things I miss about her and I thought this may be a good topic for my blog. A chance to reflect on and think about my beautiful little girl. I miss so many things about the first week of her life, before she had her operation, when she was on K2 at Alder Hey hospital. I miss watching her stretch her entire little body and wriggle around as she was waking up from a deep sleep. I miss the way she used to gulp down her milk as fast as she could and then clamp her mouth tightly shut when she had drunk enough and refuse to let the bottle pass her lips again. I miss watching

122

her sleep - it seemed she could get comfortable in any position. I miss it when she pursed her lips in her sleep and pulled other funny faces. I miss our cuddles - I miss our cuddles so much. I miss holding her against my chest and snuggling her close. I miss stroking her soft hair and watching her sleep, her cheek squashed against my shoulder. I miss resting my cheek on the softness of her head and feeling totally at peace, knowing that this felt totally right and was what my life was all about - caring for my beautiful daughter. I miss jumping out of bed in the morning, even though I had only had a few hours sleep, because I was going to spend another day

"When a baby is born, it's a mother's instinct to protect the baby. When a baby dies, it's the mother's instinct to protect their memory." - Unknown

with my amazing little girl. Jumping quickly in the shower and getting dressed as quickly as I could - I never once dried my hair with a hairdryer during Erin's life because that would just be wasting time. I could not wait to be by her side and every minute was precious. I miss getting up in the morning and saying excitedly to my husband, "come on, lets go and see our little poppet". I miss changing her as she wiggled around on the mat - trying to work around the wires and monitors. I miss choosing a babygrow for her to wear and dressing her proudly. I miss everything!

operation. This was a very different time as she was critically ill and there were no cuddles, or dressing or stretching anymore.....but despite this, there was still hope. There was still a skip in my step as I rushed down to the ward in the morning, hoping that today would be the day when she could come off the ECMO machine. There were still tremendous feelings of pride as I sat by her side, whispering words of comfort in her ear, stroking her hair and holding her hand. These feelings of pride will never leave me.

The next 2 weeks were spent with Erin in ICU following her

And now, there are things that I miss that I never even got to do. I

miss having the opportunity to sit in the rocking chair in her nursery with her and sing her to sleep. I miss having the chance to take her for walks in the sunshine and visit daddy during his lunch break at work. I miss the fact that I never got the chance to introduce her to most of my friends and family and that she never got to enjoy all the cuddles she would have had. I miss getting out of bed full of hope and joy in the morning.......

mannerisms that she had. I was so terrified that one day I may forget them and I never wanted to forget anything about my precious little girl. Now I know that I will never forget these things, but what I worry about is that I will forget how these things felt. It is 4 months on and I am struggling to remember just how it felt to hold my baby girl close and this scares me, because my memories are everything...they are all I have.

When we returned home from hospital without Erin one of the first things I did was write down all the wonderful things about her - the details of her hair and her weight and the funny little

Taken from Erin’s Blog, you can read more by clicking the page to go directly to it.

123


Score

8/10

SSX is great return to the series, trying to take it in other dircetions hasn't worked totally, but at least they've tried to mix it up a little bit and give the series something new. The lack of any join multiplayer is disturbing, since even SSX3 featured online multiplayer over Playstation Online and XBOX Live Positives and Negatives + Great Graphics + Varied Environments + 9 regions and a whole host of characters + Addictive leaderboard tracking - Some regions aren't much fun - No real multiplayer - Unforgettable soundtrack - "Gadgets" can become a nuisance


GAMECAST

Christopher Lazenby writes reviews for his website and we have an eclusive SSX review by him. SSX originally blasted it's way onto the market in 2000, cementing itself in history as a PS2 launch game And now in 2012, after a 5 year hiatus (7 years if you don't count SSX Blur on Wii) SSX is back with a whole new focus and quite a few new tricks to the table. SSX is back, and it's gonna be unforgiving. Storyline/Setting SSX offers only a thinly veiled story, introducing the old characters, many moved on to do other things, but soon the passion of snowboarding brings them back to SSX for the biggest challenge ever; Conquer the worlds nastiest mountain ranges and to defeat their old teammate Griff. That's pretty much the extent of the story, but you didn't come here for that, you came here for 9 mountainous regions that'll you'll be tearing across, based on 9 real mountainous regions and using Geo-Mapping technology, the folks behind SSX have successfully managed to capture each region uniquely filled with varying landscapes that'll shake you to the bone. The only criticism I found with trying to create a different experience is that some of the tracks, while technically brilliant, were actually much fun to play, and actually frutrated me, one of these was Kilimanjaro; set inside the mountain, in it's tracks and caves, pulling off multi million combos was brutally hard, trying to manage your height (so you don't slam into the ceiling) and dodging the deathly drops in the near pitch black almost crippled my hands completely. Gameplay SSX retains the basic style of gameplay offered by it's predecessors, and this game could be considered a Reboot or a Sequel, it's technically neither of them, but at the same time it features things that could be included in a reboot. So the gameplay is classic, but you can use eaither control scheme, the "classic" button method, or the new Analogue stick control method, as a veteran of SSX, I stuck with the classic button scheme, but the analogue scheme is extremely versatile and balanced, it all depends on your personal preference. The game includes a story mode called "Deadly Descents" it's split into 9 parts, each part encompassing one of the regions, and it's own chararcter, you'll blow through it in 3-5 hours, the story surrounding it is lacking (no big surprise!) and it ends with a whimper, but it's just taster for the events and the multiplayer leaderboards that will soak up your time on this game. In order to counter some of the harsher tracks, there are now equipment pieces that can be outfitted to your character, such as the WingSuit, activate this in the air and your boarder will soar across the sky for a limited amount of time, while the oxygen tank will allow you to take on the higher peaks without blacking out. Certain tracks will test your paitience, at times you'll become over zealous and clumsily fall off a cliff, so what? you messed up, you'll shrug it off and rewind or restart, however when designing deadly and exhilirating tracks, they seem to have lost their way and made some of the tracks a little bit too risky. With the other SSX games, when I saw a small path off to the side, I want to and explore it, in the new SSX, exploring too much will usually result in a brutal punishment of death. Kilimanjaro applies heavily to this one again, travelling through a pitch black tunnel, taking a branching route to the right may throw you to your doom immediately, you could argue that this is realistic, but this game throws you off amazingly high cliffs, spinning your board wildy above your head only to land with a slight thud. The game almost doesn't know what it wants to be; does it want to be the brutal harsh survival boarding game or does it want to be the light hearted crazed adrenaline rush. I'm not sure, but it's trying to be both. RiderNet follows the style of Autolog, feature din the brilliant NFS: Hot Pursuit, giving you live updates about your friends, and prompting you to take them on and hold the top spot, addictive as it was in Hot Pursuit, it returns and conquers again. Unfortunately SSX features no real online mode, it's strictly tied to leaderboards and ghosts, which is a huge oversight. Graphics SSX sets the new bar for snow effects, the powdery white snow glistens and sprays beautifully as you scream down the tracks, while the impressive after effects light the screen brilliantly as you complete a monster trick. Characters are nicely designed and each environment has its own feel; Siberia offers a cold and dark environment littered with destroyed industrial machinery while The Antarctic offers large natural slopes untouched by humanity, all the slopes look fantastic. Audio SSX soundtracks have always been great, this new one not so much, some of the tracks feel slightly out of place, but it does it's job. it's just not as memorable as it's previous outings offerings. Longevity. Most of the game will be taken up playing against leaderboards and in the community challenges, so if you've got friends that play it and you're pretty competitve, you'll be suited, but solo players will probably only find 6-7 hours of entertainment here

126

127

Profile for Tim Knight

Amaze Magazine (April 2012)  

The second edition of Amaze Magazine is packed full of brand new interviews from peers, industry professionals, tips & tricks, competitions...

Amaze Magazine (April 2012)  

The second edition of Amaze Magazine is packed full of brand new interviews from peers, industry professionals, tips & tricks, competitions...

Profile for 5ways
Advertisement

Recommendations could not be loaded

Recommendations could not be loaded

Recommendations could not be loaded

Recommendations could not be loaded