Well of course Aardman had to make an appearance in these research posts at some point. Its very likely that characters such as Morph and Wallace and Gromit were my first introduction to claymation and stop motion animation, though as a child I'd never had imagined I'd be a stop motion student today.
Aardman is probably best known for its amazing stop motion feature films like Pirates!In an adventure with scientists, Chicken Run, Wallace and Gromit: The Curse of the Were-rabbit and TV series like Shaun the Sheep but what many people don't know is that Aardman works with a variety of media including 2D, 3D, CGI, live action and puppeteering. They are also responsible for creating the worlds largest stop motion film (Gulp) and smallest stop motion film (Dot) as a promotion for Nokia phones. You can watch them both here
What I like about these short films is that they push the limits of what can be achieved with stop motion both in terms of the technology and materials.
What I like most about Aardman is that although they are now using new technology's and materials such as three dimensional printing and foam latex as well as the traditional plasticine to create their puppets, they have managed to keep the clay like appearance of the characters very consistent and true to the 'Aardman Style' that we all know and love.