DIGITAL COMPOSITING II: "3Alia in Wonderland"

Course MD 702 Winter 2011/12, Lecturer: Mikala Hyldig Dal / TA: Ayman Abou El Kheir / Ahmed Kareem

We will do a contemporary Egyptian re-make of the classic 19th century tale of Alice’s journey through a jinxed world where size is indifferently variable and nature laws of little matter; much like in the world of animation.

Course description: "3Alia in Wonderland" // The course „Alia in Wonderland“ will create a short film of multiple authorships, translating the allegorical tale of Alice in Wonderland into contemporary Egypt 2010/12. The basic storyline of the book will be superimposed onto the timeline of central events in Egypt’s development during the past 2 years. Each student will create a 30 second visualisation of the a specific part of the narration and work with the one proceeding and following him/her on adjusting the transitions between sequences to keep the storyline continuous. The course will take its participants a long step further into the advanced working with moving images. It will be possible to focus on elaborate compositing methods with video material as well as on animation. A special emphasis will be on refining the individual visual styles of the participants and on conceptual collaborations within small groups.

Learning objectives:

• Training Collaborative working, Understanding and dealing with an abstract concept collectively. • Moving images concept development, refining personal style, specializing in individual techniques. • Arabic/Egyptian form-language, research and development. • Establishing relevance to current society in creative work.

Learning outcomes:

At the successful completion of this course, students will be able to: • Present themselves as co-authors of a (semi) professional short movie, submitted at festivals internationally

Course content: With the collective class project “Alia in Wonderland” we will aim at creating a semi-professional product fit for festivals. We will do a contemporary Egyptian re-make of the classic 19th century children’s tale (enjoyed by adults for its allegorical value) by Lewis Caroll, of Alice’s journey through a jinxed world where size is indifferently variable and nature laws of little matter, much like in the world of animation.

We will experiment with fusing elements from the classical Arabic form language (ornament, arabesque, calligraphy) with contemporary motion graphics, DIY-style animations and generative programming and exchange objects and characters from the original tale with their Egyptian/Arabic counterparts.

Each participant will be responsible for a 30 second animation/composited movie-clip of a piece of the storyline: this piece should be done with the technique and the style s/he masters best and enjoys most. We will create a continuous narrative the visuality of which will be transformed each time a new participant takes over. To maintain the narrative each participant will discuss elaborately with the student before and after him/her in the timeline, through with means of transitions the individual sequences can be connected (reoccurring objects, closing/opening doors, looks and directions, continuous movements etc.)

Keywords: Animation techniques, advanced digital compositing, story-telling, image-transitions, multiple authorships, collaboration

Course Weights:50% Final Exam. Practical - Your finalized movie clip due on January 8/9 25% Mid-term Exam. Practical - Project development and presentation as on the 4/6 November 25% Report. Theoretical - Treatment for Pitch as presented on the 7/10 October'

Inspiration: http://thewildernessdowntown.com/ (Interactive Music Video) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L7m_z6a8OmI (The Chase, video spot)

GROUP 2 Link to full script, with divisions according to student names:

GROUP 2 CHAPTERS BY NAME: 1) (intro, opening credits (title/s), name of project/explanation: "3Alia in Wonderland" - an Egyptian adaption of the old children's tale, set to Cairo 2010-13: the narration of Alice>3Alice is superimposed with the historical time-line of Egypt between 2010-13, as interpreted by 22 young film-makers from the German University Cairo, ((Project supervision by lecturer Mikala Hyldig Dal)) IDEA: Kinetic Typography) Nour Youssef, 2+3) Stefan, 3+4) Ahmed Moneem, 5+6) Hend Esmat, 7) Nada Harfoush, 8)Noha Fattah, 9) Ragdha Helal, 10) Asmaa Seleem, 11) Donia, 12) Ali Heraize, 13) Farah Saleh, 14) Mohamed Adel, 15) Nermin, 16) Lamiaa, 17) Seifallah, 18) AlShiemaa 19) Reem, 20) Zeinab, 21) Nissmah, 22) Nadine, 23) Roba, 24) Abla (closing credits, idea: each student/filmaker creates her/his name in the technique s/he is using for the main sequence, Abla will organize them all in a collecting framework)

Defining characteristics 3Alia: Dark skin, eyes, hair / a CLOCK is present in some form on her body / the color blue / (proportionally) big eyes / she wears sneakers / Same actor is used for all live action recordings, directors organize yourself, e.g. contact the AUC theatre department.


GROUP 1 Link to full script, each student choose one chapter by adding your name to the relevant entry on our face book page

GROUP 1 CHAPTERS BY NAME: 1) Karim (Intro, opening credits (title/s), name of project/explanation: "The Wizard of Us" - an Egyptian adaption of the old children's tale, set in contemporary Cairo as interpreted by 24 young film-makers ((German University Cairo, supervisor)), 2) Belal Latif, 3)Ehab, 4)Mohammed Attia, 5)Loai, 6)Merna, 7)Forat, 8) Amira, 9) Seif El Din, 10) Yara, 11) Nada, 12) Yomna, 13) Mariam, 14) Ahmed Belal, 15a)Mina 15b) May, 16) Sarah, 17) Sandra, 18) Mina , 19) Hana, 20) Sara, 21) Amina, 22) Rana, 23) Yasmina, 24/ Outtro ) Kareem (closing credits, idea: each student/film maker creates her/his name in the technique s/he is using for the main sequence, Kareem will organize them all in a connecting framework)


Group 2: Sunday, 3 + 4th slots, PD (3rd slot) / maclab (4th slot)

Group 1: Wednesday, 1 + 2nd slots, PD (1st slot) / maclab (2nd slot)


Week Description Assignment
01, 9/11 September Intro, course outlines
02 16/17 S. Project discussion. Mind-shaker # 0.1 (wo/man in

sections) Introduction to Assignment 1: research collaborative workflows (example: photoshop-tennis), 1a research

03 23/24 S. The Hat – each participant draws a number signifying

which part of the storyline he/she will be covering. Mind-shaker # 0.2 (yesterday image) Screening transitions, moving image examples and terminology. Introduction to Assignment 2: Pitch.

Present Assignment 1 + 1a
04 30/3 September / October Mind-shaker # 0.3 (object connections).

Present assignment: Treatment for pitch 3 storyboard + short script

Present Assignment 2
05 7/10 October Mind-shaker # 0.4 (Creating your path) PRESENTING/pitching treatments on class. Supervised by Storyteller Henriette Bornkamm.

Include the following in your treatment: abstract (basic visual idea, relation between original text and the Egypt context), summary (what do we see), mood-board (how will it look like, translating original objects/characters with Egyptian aesthetics), moving image examples/inspiration, technique (how do you do it), short script, story board. ATTENDANCE IS OBLIGATORY!!

Present Assignment 3
06 14/16 October Discussing storyboards on class, planing transitions with colleagues Present Assignment 3
07 21/23 October Mind-shaker # 0.6. Individual meetings with Ayman.
08 28/31 October EID / individual meetings
10 11/13 N Individual meetings
11 18/20 N Individual meetings
12 25/28 N Individual meetings
13 2/5 December Project presentations
14 9/12 December PROJECT PRESENTATIONS - everyone please be present for entire class

Supervised by our special guest from the US: Mr. Kenny Suit

Group: "3alia in Wonderland" meet on December 16th, 10 - 14 o'clock

Group: "Wizard of Loz" meet on the December 19th, 10 - 14 o'clock


Group: "3alia in Wonderland" meet on the 8. January 10 - 12 h

Group: "Wizard of Loz" 9. January 10 - 12 h

All films are in their final version including the transitions; fantastic, interesting, professional. Each of you will have a 10 min time-slot to present, show and receive critique of your work. We will watch the films according to their number in the timeline.

Attendance for all students for the entire time is obligatory: failure to attend, come on time* and hand in will result in a dropped course!!

  • If you are late by more than 20 min. your grade will be reduced with 50 %.


FOR CREDITS SUPPORT/BACKUP: all students make a 5 sec clip of you name as you would like to see it represented in the outro - using the same technique as in your main film.


Group: "3alia in Wonderland" & Group: "Wizard of Loz"

All films have been optimized according to the critique they may have received at the final presentations, including transitions. We will watch the film at full length and without breaks and discuss the work as a whole.


Films that fail to meet basic quality demands will be excluded from the final version!!

Attendance for all students for the entire time is obligatory: failure to attend will result in a dropped course!!

If you are late by more than 15 min. you will face a grade reduction.