Filmmaking lessons I learned from a 4 year old

The last time I was in Iceland- my wife and I babysat a lil four year boy old a few times-

I was drawing stuff with him in my notebook when I asked him to draw some monsters- and this is what he drew-

I asked him to describe what he drew- the big round parts were their bodies, the lines were their arms and legs and the other circles or scribbles were eyes, noses and mouths-

He was very matter of fact about it ^_^

Since he has a fully working imagination these were monsters- it we adults still have working imaginations we can see these as monsters or creatures of some kind as well-

By drawing these monsters he taught me that my characters and other models don't need to be modeled and rendered technically perfect- not even close to it- we know what they are-

If you're telling stories with your characters its not about what things look like really- its about telling a story- the look of the things is supposed to support the story not supersede or supplant it-

Also when babysitting- I drew a monster on my hand and chased him around the apartment for hours with this hand monster eating things and trying to eat him- he was running and screaming all over the place like my hand monster was as scary as the T-rex from Jurassic Park-

If we are creating things for an audience that still has a working imagination we need not worry so much about things looking "perfect" they just need to be good enough to tell the story-

In the world of 3d animation people tend to get caught up with the technical quality of the models involved- I never caught this disease and I'm glad I never did- its a waste of time if you are a storyteller-

I myself am no longer impressed with innovations in the look of computer graphics for film, animation or games- sure they look more and more realistic and get higher and higher poly- who cares? How is that going to help the story or make it more fun? It's not.

Minecraft taught the world of computer graphics a big lesson with its blocky graphics and innovative gameplay instead of realism.

You have to end your pursuit of technical perfection if your going to actually stop and create something. Its a pursuit- you'll chase it but never catch it.

So to those of you that want to create characters and tell stories but you are not because you think you're stuff doesn't look good enough- get over it- tell a good story or do something innovative and most people won't give a shit what it looks like- we want to be entertained and feel things not watch a fashion show.

We all have an inner four year old- so stop polishing your toys up and tell us a story with them unless you want to be a boring adult ^_^

Things don't have to look perfect for four year olds- so get over it and make something!


  1. ehh this looks awesome! he wants to work for Hollywood , i think he will succeed , why u no understand anything M , just sayin' , okay , I'm joking , cool models, aint it?

  2. Please make the one on the top left into an actual CGI monster.

  3. Well said, Mdot. Lessons from those whose minds aren't filled with bullshit. A lesson I will keep in mind.

  4. OMG I am late to the party ... "my wife and I " ... Dude! When the hell did you get married??!!! Belated Congratulations!

  5. he got married in 5269 , now he went back in time and got married again


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