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Friday, November 30, 2007

WIP : rube goldberg (pre-post)

Nearly there.
This is the final iteration before the post-production work.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

link: retro-future art

A small, but great vintage collection of the future, past.

The minimalist aesthetic always appealed to me, but beyond that it's just a wave of pure nostalgia; these were some of the viral images that infected my brain as a very young boy.

I'd love to make a retro-future/steam punk short.

Any one up for it?

Saturday, November 24, 2007

link: The Mysterious Geographic Explorations of Jasper Morello

Set in a world of iron dirigibles and steam powered computers, this gothic horror mystery tells the story of Jasper Morello, a disgraced aerial navigator who flees his Plague-ridden home on a desperate voyage to redeem himself. The chance discovery of an abandoned dirigible leads Jasper through unchartered waters to an island on which lives a terrifying creature that may be the cure for the Plague. The journey back to civilization is filled with horrors but in a shocking climax, Jasper discovers that the greatest horror of all lies within man himself.

The official site, including how to purchase the DVD

( IMDB entry )

part the first

part the second

part the third

part the fourth

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

WIP : le phare (2)

Another image from the same environment of Le Phare.

WIP : le phare

I still consider this as a work in progress. I think once I upgrade my computer I'll start at this again.

'Le Phare' (the lighthouse) was inspired by the story The Little Prince.
A fuller exposition is explored in my demo reel.

link: films of Ivan Maximov, 2d animator

I've always had a fascination with animation from areas outside of the US.
Visual media is always tied to a vocabulary of iconography that draws
deeply from the culture that creates it. I love aesthetics that present
an alternate dialogue with reality and present stories that tap into
a wealth of imagination for which i'm unfamiliar.

I recently came across the works of Ivan Maximov, a longtime Russian animator with a great sense of the surreal.

I've collected some of my favorites, but a search of youTube will turn up others.

wind along the coast
nitti - strings
rain down from above

Thursday, November 15, 2007

WIP : rube goldberg (5)

Getting closer to the final comp.

link : NYT article on 'Beowulf'

The NYT recently ran an article discussing the merits of the cg animation in Beowulf.

After reviewing the trailers again, I remain firmly convinced that the film - and the industry itself - is still mired in the depths of the uncanny valley.
The art direction and cinematography in Beowulf are amazing.
But I'm still left with the sense that mo-cap cleanup animators - and 3d animators in general - are so intent on distinguishing themselves from 2d animators that they've left 100 years of collective wisdom behind.

Granted, 3d actors need not require the same level of exaggerated action as their 2d counterparts, but after watching Beowulf I see none of the fluidity of motion of a living/breathing entity; the neck and shoulders are stiff, there is no leading, anticipatory motion. And the eyes...the eyes. Once again the animators have forgotten that our significant emotional connection is read through the eyes. Watch the trailers again. And pay attention to the commentary. It's a great side-by-side comparison of normal vs artificial behavior. None of the characters blink. Ever. None have their eyelids droop. Or dart about.
And as much as Final Fantasy: Spirits Within was derided, I don't think we've learned much since then.

link: 'Persepolis' (trailer, animated)

Persepolis Trailer

Persepolis web site

Marjarie Satrapi's graphic novels Persepolis: the Story of a Childhood and Persepolis 2: the Story of a Return won widespread acclaim in France, now her home, and around the world. Now, she had co-directed, with Vincent Pronnaud, the animated film version of her memoir.

The title PERSEPOLIS comes from the Persian capital founded in the 6th century
BC by Darius I, later destroyed by Alexander the Great. It's a reminder that there's
an old and grand civilization, besieged by waves of invaders but carrying on through millenia, that is much deeper and more complex than the current-day view of Iran as a monoculture of fundamentalism, fanaticism and terrorism.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

WIP : rube goldberg (4)

A little more retro flavor for the comp.

Trix Comp (2b) : evolution

Second of two images.
This collection shows the texturing and lighting portion of the cycle.
Additionally, several of the iterations that produced the final submission
are included as well.

Trix Comp (2a) : evolution

First of a two-part sequence of images that open up the developmental process that produced the final Trix comp.