Famous Home Movie Makers- Nick Park

Ah, the movies; one of the most popular forms of entertainment of the century. With amazing special effects and gripping storylines, it’s easy to forget that these plots aren’t actually real sometimes.

Film makers can seem like magicians, but even they had to begin somewhere. What better place to start than creating videos at home?

Believe it or not, Academy Award winning animator Nick Park began his creative career by creating home videos. Join us as we take a deeper look at how his early exposure to creating homemade films helped him achieve his massive success.

Early Years

Nick Park was born in Preston, Lancashire in 1958. From an early age, he was interested in drawing comics and adopted his father’s habit of collecting items and spare parts from around his neighbourhood. This collection of items would come in handy when Nick began to create his own stop motion films at home; using his mother’s 8mm camera and items from her dressmaking kit to create props, characters and sets for his animated shorts.

By the age of 13, he had finished his first animated short, which was entitled Walter the Rat. At 15 he had created another short named Archie’s Concrete Nightmare which he had submitted to a BBC young animator film competition. The short didn’t win, but it did air on national TV on BBC2.

Nick then went on to study at Sheffield City Polytechnic where he studied art, and followed this up by attending the National Film and Television School where he began creating his first film, the famous Wallace and Gromit short, A Grand Day Out.

The unfinished film soon caught the eyes of Peter Lord and David Sproxton, animators at the highly acclaimed Aardman Animation studio. They were so impressed with Nick’s work that they hired him in 1985.

Professional Career

Initially, Nick didn’t have a huge role at Aardman Animations; contributing to commercials and working alongside his colleagues on Peter Gabriel’s award winning Sledgehammer music video. However, following the success of his first Wallace and Gromit installation, Nick followed A Grand Day Out with The Wrong Trousers and A Close Shave.

With the additional success of his animated short Creature Comforts , Nick had securely cemented himself in the animation industry, and was quickly rising to fame for the work that he was producing.

After catching the elusive eye of Hollywood, Nick and Peter Lord co-directed the first Aardman feature length film Chicken Run, which was distributed by DreamWorks Studios. After co-producing a feature length Wallace and Gromit adventure, The Curse of the Were-Rabbit in 2005 which was also distributed by DreamWorks, Aardman and their famous distributor ended their association due to creative differences.

Nick’s initial introduction to creating homemade films had given him the skill set and experience to create movies at an early age. This experience is essential and without it, he may not have been as successful as he is today. The most important thing to note is that he created these initial shorts through his own interest and determination, with no pressure of an industry to deter him. Nick is an excellent example of what can be achieved through perseverance and a genuine interest in film making. Who knows what some of your own home videos can help you achieve?

At Cine2DVD Transfers, we can help you transform your home movies onto a digital format, so that you can easily view them any time you desire. We specialise in the transfer of 8mm Cine Film to DVD, so don’t delay in letting the world see your masterpieces. Who knows, you may become the next Nick Park! Interesting right? If you would like more information, contact us by calling 0800 592433 today and see how Cine2DVD Transfers can help you!