在电脑技术日趋发达——但动画风格也日趋同质化的今天，依然保持着每次只能拍摄一帧这种“原始”作风的定格动画在动漫界是非常特殊的存在。凭着一个男人和一条狗风靡世界的阿德曼动画公司是名副其实的定格动画掌门人。除了《超级无敌掌门狗》（Wallace and Gromit）系列，他们为什么能不断推出像《动物物语》（Creature Comforts）、《小羊肖恩》（Shaun The Sheep）、《小鸡快跑》（Chicken Run）这样与众不同的精品呢？一起来听听其创始人的看法吧——
The founders of Aardman Animations, Peter Lord and David Sproxton, started animating while they were at school together. As with all great careers there has to be a special element, and in this case it was a 16mm Bolex注 camera owned by Sproxton's father. “If we hadn't been able to borrow that camera, I would probably be in accounts or something now,” mused[沉思] Peter Lord.
One of these early sequences[片段] featured a character called Aardman, a send-up[滑稽的模仿] of Superman. They sold that 15-second sequence to the BBC, and when the check arrived they needed a bank account. “The bank wanted to know the name of our company, and we told them Aardman. So for the next 30 years we've had to say, ‘My firm is called Aardman Animations,'” explained Lord.
While we talked in this Oscar-winning studio, where Wallace and Gromit were born, it seemed inevitable[不可避免的] to mention the influence of computer on stop-motion animation. “Our finished material is still shot on film. We think it still gives the best image,” he said.
Even if they could scan puppet[玩偶] characters into the computer and animate them on the screen, “there is a fundamental difference between working with your hands and working on the keyboard,” the animator explained. “For all of us animators at Aardman now, we are trained in this craft[手艺], just like a musician or a painter, it's all hand and brain. You grab the puppet with two hands, and you feel the whole thing move. The camera has to move right, the light has to be right, the actor has to do the right thing—make-up, costume, everything has to be right. Just for one moment in time. That's the way we work. I believe that the humanity[人性] in what we're doing, the process, all comes through in the final film.”
“For a young person, which is more important—storytelling or craft?” Lord expressed his concern when I asked him for some advice. “If a young person in college wants to make a name for themselves, I would say get a great idea, a great story, and tell that. I'm not saying forget about technique, but I'd rather see flair[才能] and energy and humor. There are so few really good films that a good story with a good punch line[（故事中的）妙语] just communicates so well and makes the audience wild. So, my advice to young animators? Tell a good story, for heaven's sake.”
像阿德曼那样玩动画 Making Animation the Aardman Way