Saturday, March 09, 2013

Studio Ghibli

No, I'm not referring to the museum or their works but my experience at their studio, their workplace. But before I start, I shall mention this first - the visit I had was almost 5 years ago!!!! hahahaha Cause I didn't blog about it and am also missing Japan, so I decided to blog about it.

*I also just realized I stopped my Japan's trip posts till day 2 part 1 and Studio Ghibli visiting was on day 3. Hahahahaha*
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☆ Disclaimer ☆
As these are based on my memory of 5 years ago, information may be recalled wrongly or have changed over the years. As no photography was allowed at working area, the working area would all be described in words according to my (poor) memory. Hence, it is your choice to trust the following content or not. ( >∀<)

So, I was lucky to be able to visit Studio Ghibli. It was a rare chance as the only time one would able to visit is either school trip or working on the same line. For me, it was a school trip and I am glad I participated in this trip! I was so excited as I grow up watching their films. I remember catching <My Neighbor Totoro> on TV and during secondary school days, my Chinese teacher(s) played few of his film such as <Laputa: Castle in the Sky> and <Grave of the Fireflies>.

When we arrived, we were welcomed by a bunch of cute litte kids. Okay, no link to the studio. The school / daycare centre just happened to be opposite the studio. The studio is actually not located at any city area but what seems to be at where private houses are located.

Upon entering, we were welcomed by this giant size totoro. We sat down to where it seems like a meeting room but also seems like a library due to amount of books/dvds shelved everywhere. Oh! There was also a big totoro there! But smaller than the one near the entrance. About toddler tall? We were also told no photography was allowed.

If I'm not wrong, we were then proceeded to their mini theatre to watch <Ponyo on the Cliff by the Sea> trailer. That period of time when I was there was just nice the release of the film. This also means that Hayao Miyazaki sensei wasn't there. We were told he would take a few months break after each film ended and each film's production lasts 3 years. If he was there, he would be the sloppy(?) old man in slippers walking around the studio. Being the director, he oversees all the work. If he's not satisfied at whichever work, he would redo it himself. Back to <Ponyo on the Cliff by the Sea>, we were also told they did the most drawings for this film - a new record. I don't know about other 2D animation films, but Studio Ghibli combines both hand-painted scenes/background with digital animation and then composite them together.

After the trailer and Q&A, we started touring around their workspace. I think I remembered visiting a room that seemed like a laboratory with a huge machine. I don't remember what the machine does or if it was even work. I guess it was used for some sort of scanning the work pieces. Then, we visited the work space. It's just like any other work space but probably smaller cause in general, Japan's office are smaller. However, there is one thing that caught my attention and I could even remember till now. I remember on a wall, they painted a BIG window with a beautiful sky and I think there was a mountain too. It was basically a beautiful view "out of the window". It is really amazing! Cause in this creative line, all the creatives will often be stucked in front of the screen to complete the work all day long. So the "window" is another perspective for them to like "see the outside world" when they look up to the wall. Cool right? If I could paint well, I might have painted a window on my wall infront of me. hehehe.

Heading upwards, we went to the rooftop. Photography allowed! hahaha. We were introduced to Miyazaki sensei's private collection and being typical tourists/visitors, we took photos with it. hahahaha.

⋙ His private collection.

Then I think we headed down, past by their cafe and proceeded to their next building. Yes, they have two buildings to themselves namely, 1 and 2. 1 is the main building and 2 is where all the paintings were born. The artists also would spend a long time to mix to a desired color.

⋙ The all white building in the middle is their second building.

⋙ I think this is part of their first building.

Anddddddddd, that's all for Studio Ghibli visiting. Later that day, we visited the Ghibli Museum.

Awesome but due to lack of time, we could not stay too long. There is really so much to see!!! Like the storyboards, the process etc. Like the studio, no photography allowed! Ahhh I wanna go again!!! There is also a gift shop that I guess is often crowded with people. Back then when I was there, it was <My Neighbor Totoro>'s 20 years anniversary, so I bought its 20 years anniversary pendant, Totoro's little keychain plushie and also Ponyo's plushie (yea, got hook to Ponyo after watching only the trailer and of which that played a language I don't understand too).

Time for Laputan Robot to say bye!
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  1. you are very lucky to visit this museum ! and your article is very interesting

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