Catfish collective: Far East Animators

Quirky, crafted animations from this East Ham based duo, who love triangular shaped cheese.

The second instalment of our HOME GROWN TALENT feature is about the most excellent and totally bodacious CATFISH COLLECTIVE. This animation duo have a studio up at Napier Works, run by Artcore International (in the upper east side of East Ham, just above Flanders playing fields) and have worked with Nike, BBC, Unilever and Gucci among others. Big league stuff, yeah!

Their beautiful, perfectly crafted and quirky work cannot fail to make you smile (unless you have a heart made of stone or have turned to the dark side of the force) and when you read their interview we are sure that you will love them even more. We are certainly very proud to say that we live in the same piece of Ham as they do, AND AND AND they are planning a film night in collaboration with Red Door Studios soon, Yippee!

Anyway, enough from us. Read all about it below (and the triangular cheese issue will all become clear!)…

Daniella at work at catfish collective


EB: What were you doing before we rudely interrupted you?

CC: I was actually watching back-to-back episodes of Brooklyn Nine-Nine. It’s probably for the best that you interrupted.

EB: We heard a rumour that yoooose guys live on the edge (the EAST edge that is)… Which bit is your hood? (Um, we don’t need your full address and postcode, just an area, unless you want us to come and stand outside your front door demanding animations morning noon and night!

CC: Our animation studio is in Napier Works, just off Barking Road. It’s a modest little space, but it serves us well.

EB: Tell us a bit about why you like the east side?

CC: We love the East Edge more and more each time I explore. It’s close enough to central London that I can be in Soho in 30-40 minutes and far enough out that everything actually costs what it’s worth, rather than being 5 times more expensive than it should be. There’s loads of brilliant restaurants and Central Park is a perfect quiet place to take Bernie-dog for a walk.

EB: Any Top Tip for new East Enders? Know any good breakfast spots? Best pub? Awesome takeways?

CC: Our favourite place in Eastie is Red Door Studios, it’s the best place to go for a cuppa and lovely home-baked cakes on a Saturday. Our second favourite place is Saravana Bhavan on High Street North, it’s the greatest Indian vegetarian restaurant I’ve ever been to with the tastiest chilli paneer and fanciest (biggest) dosa’s. Joint second is Tippy’s cafe, best banana fritters and only 80p for a cup of tea!

EB: What’s the last thing you watched on You Tube?

CC: Can’t beat a bit of bad NFL lip reading:  {Editors note: for those of you who can’t, or can’t be bothered to link through to You Tube, this is a hilarious overdub of lip reading NFL players and coaches at a big game. Random and most amusing}

EB: Tell us a bit about the awesomeness that is Catfish Collective. How did it all start?

CC: Catfish Collective was born thanks to the wonders of modern technology, also known as Twitter. Joe and I started talking one day and realised that we were both obsessed with paper, miniature handmade models and stop motion. From there we met up and started pitching on projects together and after a few small jobs we won a contract to direct and animate the new Flora (margarine) TV campaign. That’s when we set up our studio and bought an endless supply of every colour paper you can imagine.

We specialise in stop-motion but also animate in After Effects as well as design and make miniature paper landscapes. In between projects we’ve started writing and making paper props and characters for a short film that we work on when we get a spare minute.

EB: What does 2016 hold for Catfish Collective? Any plans for local projects, side projects or new projects that aren’t top secret?

CC: At the moment we’re directing and animating a new TV campaign for a very tasty cereal brand. It’ll be on TV in February and there’s a whole bunch of lovely little videos to be released alongside it that will be on Facebook and Twitter and such like. Alongside that we also did a papery project for Toblerone, it’s not on our website yet but you can see it here…

We’re also planning on setting up a film/animation night at Red Door Studios every other month. So keep you eyes peeled for that! {editor squeals with delight!}

EB: Round cheese or square cheese?

CC: How do you feel about the option of triangular cheese? We’re big fans of Dairylea triangles.

See, we knew you would love them! Catch them on Twitter or at the very least, tell all your friends about them please. Oh, and for those of you wondering… This little fella below is Bernie-Dog.

bernie dog from cat fish collective
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