It's the 30th Anniversary of The Nightmare Before Christmas! So naturally, Halloween Meets Christmas is the theme for STOPMO JAM 5! Elves Trick or Treating. Werewolves baking Christmas Cookies. Vampires pumpkin caroling. But it's not Tim Burton's vision...It's your take on what would happen if Halloween collided with Christmas. 

So what is a STOPMO JAM?

It is a series of short animated ideas that all relate to the theme. We've done Spring, Run, Halloween and Sci-Fi thus far. 

Puppets can be made of clay, paper, foam, wire, sand, whichever materials you can utilize to create your design but it must be stop motion animated. Sorry no LEGOs, action figures, toys, or store bought items are allowed UNLESS it is modified (painted, covered with paper or clay, etc). The goal is to make a hand-made experimental film. Stop motion puppets, 2d cutouts, sand, painting, all hand-made animation techniques allowed. No transitions this time, I will take care of it.

Once you are completely finished with your Jam, upload it to online storage such as Google Drive, Dropbox or WeTransfer and send the link to my INBOX.

If you have any questions, post them below.



Important Technical Requirements!

For your Jam to look its best, please adhere to these guidelines.

Shot Length: up to 20 seconds maximum

Frame Rate: 24 fps (not 23.96, 30 or 29.97

Aspect Ratio: 16:9 @ 1920 x 1080

Finished Animation: export to Quicktime (H264 is good)

Add your own Sound FX and/or music. Make sure you have the rights to it. Better yet, record your own! 

DEADLINE is October 15, 2023. This may seem like a long ways away but for stop motion people, it's just around the corner. Remember, you have to build and animate everything yourself. You could easily spend months just building a puppet. Start thinking of your idea first, once you have nailed it down, get to work. Grab a calendar and plan out a schedule. Give yourself several deadlines to stay on track.

If you have any questions, send me a message thru SMA.com or better yet, reply to this thread. Content must be ok for kids to watch. I reserve the right not to include your animation if it doesn't fit into these guidelines. Go animate!

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  • Woo hoo, I finished animating yesterday! I had to re-shoot one shot to make it quicker. Since I cut to different angles with the same 3 puppets both before and after, I couldn't just take a bit off either end, the moves would not have matched. That reshoot saved about 18 frames, which gave me enough room for the final shot. Still some compositing to do - it was all shot bluescreen (not my usual green because of Christmas things with green in them).
    Still some sound editing, including a music track, to do.
    I don't think there was a requirement to go to black or anything at the start or end, but I have 3 spare frames at each end that could do a very fast fade from/to black if that helps.
    I won't be doing a longer stand-alone version this time, the increase to a 20 second limit made all the difference.
    • Can't wait to see what you've come up with. I hope to be contributing for the next Jam! The 20 sec. for gives better room for a proper story. Glad you filled it out!!
  • Half way done filming and final set done. So close and so excited! The 15th is approaching fast!
  • I've been making my puppets and I am now starting on my set, I expect to have them done within a week or two. Then I'll finally start filming, fingers crossed I can get my simple concept done all before the 15th. I am fairly confident as it is not too elaborate. Thank you to the creators of this website for having this stop-motion jam, this will be my first finished stop motion project all thanks to the encouragement and motivation of this website.
  • All puppets made, and main set pieces, just not placed on the ground yet.
    Should have been at this stage a week ago, but had trouble letting go of another project, with Baba Yaga, had to finish off some making on that before I put it away until after the Jam.
    For the Jam entry - Just a couple of small props to finish, and then record some dialogue to see if I can fit into 20 seconds. It's very succinct, no waffling on, but it still looks more like 30 seconds. (It's looking likely that I'll also do a longer stand-alone version, with a couple of shots and a few frames that won't squeeze into the Jam version.) I should get set up and lit and start the first shot this week.
  • We are getting closer to the Deadline, how is everyone doing with their Halloween/Christmas Jams? Message me if you have any questions or issues! > https://www.stopmotionanimation.com/profiles/message/newFromProfile...
  • I have decided not to participate in this years Jam. Too many things going on to cause me to put a halt on all art for the past few months. At this point I would not enjoy the project.
    My idea:
    Two kids dressed in costume approach Santa's house who has decorated for Halloween. One child says " This house gives the good stuff" They ring the doorbell. Santa dressed as a skeleton answers the door. "Ho Ho Happy Halloweeeen" - Kids reply "Trick or treat" and hand out their bags. Santa then throws bikes and toys onto the kids knocking them over. Three puppets (no lip sync) and a porch set. Ambitious for me but was very excited for it in the beginning but life got in the way (more than usual). Fear not, things are returning to normal and my family is doing fine.
    • Sorry to hear we'll miss out on your entry. Life does tend to throw a lot at you sometimes. Your idea sounds good, but there's a lot going on, it might have been a bit cramped getting it into 20 seconds.
    • I did a hilarious live action shoot with me on my knees. Of course my 90 pound sheep dog thought I was playing so he is all over the shot. I also looked at your trick or treat kids for timing. I do need to start simplifying and focus on animation more. What I was dreading the most was costuming. No off the shelf clothes would have worked.
      Yes life gets in the way and art is usually my escape. I track every minute I spend creating, for three months I only had 37 hours out of a possible 501 hours. When I did my Pinocchio short I had 61 hours in January. Fall is on the way here in the states so hopefully less yard work and more art work.
  • the idea: https://vimeo.com/manage/videos/857905414
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