Geek It! Animation Spotlight: Interview with animator Counter656


The art of stop-motion animation is without a doubt the ultimate underdog in the world of animation. Thanks to recent films such as Laika’s Boxtrolls and Kubo and the Two Strings, it has certainly renewed people’s interest in the complex technique. However, let us take you far, far, far away from Hollywood to the world of … Youtube.
Youtuber Counter656 has been practicing the art of stop-motion for many years now. From Gundam to Dragonball battles, his videos are always filled with action sequences that will leave you wanting more. As a special treat, we have unearthed this [old] interview with the mastermind himself. Check out the interview below! 
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CGP: Tell us how it all began — how and when did you begin your animation hobby? 

Counter656: I used to work in the Machinery exportation business for many years, and then I decided to focus on animation as a full-time job. I am a huge anime and toys fan, and as a result, I collect a lot of toys. One day, I saw people sharing stop-motion videos on Youtube and this motivated me to try it too. I learnt everything about animation from Youtube.
CGP: What inspired you to start your Youtube channel (Counter656)? 

Counter656: I was inspired by other video makers, not just stop-motion but also toys review channels, joke channels, and movie channels. At first, my idea was to simply setup a channel in which I can show my productions. And as I have more viewers who can support me and my team, I would then think of doing animation more professionally as a full-time gig.

CGP: Do you normally create these animations by yourself, or do you have a team of animators helping you out?

Counter656: I have done everything myself but I do have other animators assisting me with effects and video-editing every now and then.

CGP: How long would each stop-motion animation take you to do?

Counter656: Each stop-motion animation of approximately 2-3 minutes takes me around 20 days of production.

CGP: Stop-motion animation requires a lot of time, talent and effort. What is the most difficult part of creating these animation videos?

Counter656: For me, the most difficult thing is the walking cycle. In order to make these figurines walk well, it requires a lot of practice and patience. I usually find myself walking in front of a mirror to realize it in the action figures.

CGP: You are obviously into manga and anime — which series is your most favourite? 

 Counter656: My favourite series is definitely DragonBall as it played a huge part of my childhood.
CGP: From Transformers to Dragonball, you have produced a variety of videos on your channel. Which animation is your most favourite, and why?
Counter656: Definitely DragonBall as I like the way they fight. I also like the way they present energy blasts as it always full of action and power.

CGP: What would be the ultimate stop-motion battle for you to produce?

Counter656: Probably a large battle scene featuring knights and orcs fighting alongside hundreds of other characters on the battlefield. This scene always appear in my mind so I hope to do this big project in the near future.

CGP: What are your thoughts on the current animation industry?

 Counter656: Nowadays, everything is in 3D. However, if stop-motion is combined with 3D, this will add another level to stop-motion animation. I would like to see more opportunities for stop-motion animators. I see so many good stop-motion animators quit because there is no work opportunity. This is sad and a waste of talent so I hope more companies would focus on stop-motion animation in the future.

CGP: Since you collect toys, that must mean you have a big toy collection. Which toy do you treasure the most? Do you own any rare toys?

Counter656: I treasure my Gundam toys. They are not expensive– they’re actually very cheap! These toys have been part of my childhood. I first began model assembling with Gundam figures so I probably like Gundams the most. I don’t have rare toys at all but I do have some special ones, including realistic toy figures of Michael Jordan.

CGP: It is incredibly amazing that you learnt everything via Youtube. How long did it take you to perfect your skills before creating your very first stop-motion?

Counter656: Since I enjoyed making videos, it took me around 1-2 years to make my first stop-motion video. My first work was awful but I didn’t give up as it was only for fun.  Back then, I like to learn as much as I can while making the videos — I still do.

CGP: What makes stop-motion animation unique from other forms of animation such as CGI animation?

Counter656: Actually, stop-motion animation uses the same technique as claymation. The fun thing about stop-motion is that they look very realistic compared to 3D animation. They’re real but not computer made and this is what make them looks so cool and funny.

CGP: You are a well-respected animator on Youtube. Do you have any words for those aspiring to become a stop-motion animator?

Counter656: There is no secret to mastering stop-motion animation — it simply requires a lot of practice and patience. Keep doing it and never stop!


Interested in following Counter656’s work? Check out the following links!

Youtube: [here] // Facebook: [here]

(Photos have been provided and sourced from Facebook]


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