Vance Reeser

March 16, 2023

An Intro

Hi there! My intention with this blog/newsletter is to write about a short film I've been making in between paying gigs and on nights and weekends etc called TEMPER. Its been my main creative outlet for the better part of 9 years now (!!??) and it has a ways to go before its done, but I'm feeling energized and have been making good progress on it lately. I'd like to share what I'm learning and thinking about while I animate it, and this feels like a good place to do that.


I think I'll start by giving a broad overview of my setup and gear, and then break it down in more detail in future posts. My current setup is a 14" MacBook Pro M1 Pro and a 2018 13" iPad Pro. I also have a trusty old Wacom Intuos Pro. The whole deal fits in this small messenger bag, and it never ceases to amaze me that I have a full professional studio setup covering every aspect of production in this little bag! I never would have believed you if you told me that back when I was starting out.


I use Callipeg on iPad to draw storyboards and animatics. I'll get into it in more detail in a future post but this app is such a nice new addition to my workflow! My main animation driver is After Effects. I recently switched from Premiere to DaVinci Resolve for editing the shots together (night and day!). I use Photoshop mostly for backgrounds, although lately Ive also been using Adobe Fresco (iPad) or Affinity Designer (iPad). I feel like I can get into drawing and painting much easier using a native iPad app and theres less setup friction. Its possible to run Sidecar on the iPad and use desktop Photoshop that way, but its kinda clunky.

I use a web app called Miro for tracking my progress on the project and keeping a bird's eye view. I also brainstorm story fixes and new art concepts in there. Heres a (pixellated for spoilers!) screen-grab of my whole Miro page so you can kinda see how I'm using it.

I have the shot list broken up into 3 Acts and a bunch of stickies and art strewn around where I think through problems and move/combine them freely. Its a great brainstorming tool and it accepts and displays just about any kind of content I think. Really flexible 👍

Lets see, what else... I use Dropbox to store the whole thing so its available everywhere. I use the Adobe cloud thing for Photoshop backgrounds sometimes b/c its pretty convenient in that something I make on iPad Photoshop/Fresco shows up automatically in Desktop Photoshop without any extra steps. 

I think thats a pretty good overview of my tools and methods! I look forward to diving further in on each of the areas of production. 

Til next time!✌️

About Vance Reeser

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