Saturday, December 25, 2010

Saturday, December 04, 2010

Bump on Facebook

And so here’s this little guy again, walking stumpy legged down the decades.

He has his own Facebook page nowadays – something I only just learned. How very modern of him.

Bump was in no way a sophisticated show. The production budget didn’t stretch to that. As the sole illustrator on the project I knew that I would have to produce many hundreds of pieces of artwork, and so the drawings were as simple as I could make them. Charlie Mills and Terry Brain (of Trap Door fame) and a very young Steve Box (later of Wallace & Gromit) kept the animation to its most basic, the appropriate treatment for Dennis Hooper’s childlike stories.

The theme song was just a three chord trick, a tune that I’d written some time earlier and had done nothing with. We recorded it in a tiny studio on Bristol’s Gloucester Road. I asked a fellow musician, Chris Sedgwick, if he’d come down from Birmingham to do the vocals. He brought his eight year old daughter Lucy with him – a little touch of serendipity as it happened. She sang along with her dad, just great, and added some real warmth. In fact she sells the song.

We made two series for the BBC, 26 episodes in all, and a Bump Christmas Special. Maybe it broke even commercially, I don’t know. None of us came out of it any the richer, that’s for sure.

But, twenty years on, Bump seems still to be remembered with genuine affection by a particular age group, hence his presence on Facebook and the many ringtone grabs from this blog. So I suppose that in a quiet way we must have got something right. Good enough.

Mr. Tibbs: stretching it?

I’m getting a bit worried about Mr.Tibbs, my giraffe-necked cat. A ring too far do you think? Like the parent of a precocious child I’m wondering if I’ve stepped beyond the bounds of encouragement and am now entering the realm of pushiness. He doesn’t seem so keen to put his head in the vice as he once was. In fact I’m having to buy really expensive cat food just to tempt him down into the cellar where the workbench is.

But hey, if you want the attention -and he does -then you have to put up with a bit of discomfort. Ask Ms.Gaga.