As a former Art-director I really wanted to do this book justice and give it all I've got for the advertising side of things. I knew what I wanted to do, but actually when I started this animation I had no clue how I would do it. I had the concept "The Book Your Cat Won't Want You To Read" we liked the idea that cats aren't keen on humans learning their secrets to win all the arguments, so this was a good chance to feature the cats being naughty & disruptive - lots of fun.
I really wanted to test myself and create a short piece I was proud of. I created many scenes I deleted, re-wrote it about 8 times, got stuck for weeks at times and one point, spent a week learning how to create an anamorphic street, before deciding it would be better as a 2d street built in a 3d space. which I had to first learn how to do, and move the camera through.
The whole thing is hand-drawn, with the addition of textures and fabrics. There's a few fun details in the animation that make me smile... my cat has a penchant for ripping paper. He makes very light work of a shoebox, and is even more proficient with a discarded Ikea bag. This proved very useful to add touches of the cat's dislike of the book. Lots of the animation features paper ripped up by Charlie, my cat (who also features here and there in the book). I've also used designs created on my Cat_Dont_Care instagram - patterned wallpaper featuring little sleeping cats, and the pieces on the wall in the studio scene are drawings I originally created as prints - many featuring the instagrammer's cats themselves. Lots of the wooden floors and desktops are actually from the walls of Jay's writing cabin too, so we've really put ourselves into it!
The book focuses on persuasive techniques you can try out on everyone from your boss to your cat. Jay's work is studied in American Schools, as part of the curriculum is teaching children how to use the tools of rhetoric to argue and persuade, how to create situations where everybody feels like a winner.
So there are two markets for this book, persuasion and rhetoric enthusiasts, and cat-loving people. Jay will be speaking with the BBC this week, with pioneering schools, radio stations, business organisations and top educational publications. The animation? This one's for the cat-lovers. :)