The Fox on the Fairway

Recently, I had the pleasure to do some promotional work for local theater group Twin City Stage here in Winston-Salem, NC. It’s for their upcoming play Fox on the Fairway which is about golf…I think. I mean, everyone had a golf club in their hands and they were constantly yelling at each other so it must be golf, right?

Anyways, here’s a nice article about the play in our local arts rag.

If you want ticket information, please visit Twin City Stage.

And below are the promotional photos and videos I put together. With direction from Philip Powell.

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And some videos:

Fox on the Fairway – Meet the Cast from Ioannis "Yanni" Batsios on Vimeo.

Fox on the Fairway (Do you like comedy?) from Ioannis "Yanni" Batsios on Vimeo.

Fruitcake for Santa

I recently made a short film for a local film festival here in Greensboro, North Carolina called the Fruitcake Film Festival. My friend Mickey approached me and said we hadn’t done a claymation in a while and he was right, so we decided to do it for the festival.

The festival does have several restrictions: all videos have to be either 10 seconds, 30 seconds or 60 seconds (not including credits), they all have to be family friendly and have a holiday theme.

I came up with a couple of ideas and this was the one Mickey and I liked the best. I called my talented friend Marie Stone van Vuuren to help us, because she’s been wanting to work with me on a claymation for a long time. She then incorporated her friend Sheila Duell to help and the four of us got to work.

Of all the short films I’ve done up to this point, I feel like this was the least amount of work I put in. It’s nice when you have a talented crew. I just told them what I was looking for and that was it. Marie built, selected and placed almost everything you see in the video. Sheila painted the wall to make it look like a real wall instead of the cardboard it actually was, and she hung the paintings and Mickey did what he does best: animate. I just came over, built the Santa Claus, lit the scene and shot it.

Here are some stills of production:

Room-2This is the room before it’s lit.

RoomAfter lighting. I wanted it to feel like midnight and lit by the moonlight.

FingersMickey fixing Santa’s hat.

SantaMickey swapping eye balls to make Santa look like he’s blinking. Oh yeah, Marie made the beard. I don’t think I could’ve done one that well.

And the final result:

An evening with Messersmith.

Last Monday, Jeremy Messersmith stopped by our house to perform for his Supper Club Tour. We had some great food, great wine, made some new friends and had a great time. Oh yeah, and he played some music.

The first thing he did was give us a nice gift for us offering our home for the tour.

Apparently, he’s a mushroom hunter. I verified that he knew what he was doing (I’d hate to die from eating a poisonous mushroom. I’d rather die from spontaneous combustion). He assured me that he did, but I’m still waiting to hear news from a killing spree by mushroom toting musician. If I don’t hear anything soon, I’ll take a nibble.

He was also gracious enough to sign my albums and take a few photos.

My girlfriend* took this photo, hence the soft focus..

I’m happy that I got some new photos for the portfolio:

And finally, I recorded him playing a little:

And here he is showing a sense of humor:

*note to self, only let pros handle my gear