Tuesday, November 29, 2011

A Collection of Awesomo Clips!

I was looking over some new posts from the blogs I follow on Reader, and found a few neato ones, but I also remembered some I saw a while ago that I never got around to posting...

I love anything that takes the piss out of Hipsters. Especially love the beatnick's poetry in this!

I can't enough of this clip.. the attention to detail is so impressive and they managed to capture the old-school fright-flick aesthetic perfectly. If I ever end up in 3D, this is exactly the sort of quality I'd hope to produce.

Gawper from A Large Evil Corporation on Vimeo.

Great cinematography in this one, and very creative. The music compliments it so well too, I must find a way to obtain that track... :-)

Address Is Approximate from The Theory on Vimeo.

The panda in this is so CUTE!!! I just want to cuddle him.. poor thing! I really like the whole style of this, all the colours and line work. And their use of perspective in some parts is pretty amazing too. Fantastic concept.

TIJI "COLOUR" HD from AKAMA on Vimeo.

AHAHAHAHA!!!!! Why the hell did I not know that Juicy Fruits had some famous 'Serenading Unicorn'? WHY WAS I NOT MADE AWARE OF THIS???

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Rotoscoping Goes To Funkytown!

So here's the final result of my rotoscoping assignment. I might have gotten slightly carried away here, but I had a lot of fun making this one! The quality of this compressed video is a bit crappy but I wasn't sure what else I could do. Still, I'm really happy with how it turned out overall. And for someone who can't stand dancing in public and will do anything to avoid it, I'm pretty chuffed with my efforts.
Disco Stu had to be thrown in there somewhere too... Disco Stu makes everything look super fly! Mmmm hmmmmm.... 

Monday, October 31, 2011

Copacabana Bean Progress

Steve the Bean is coming along well. He looks extra spiffy with some shiny new props thrown in! I'm much happier with the spacing now, a little bit of polishing went a long way...

Monday, October 17, 2011

'The Goat and the Well' by Ben Cady

Just had to post this one, I think it's adorable! The simplistic approach to design is really effective here, and anticipation has definitely been used well especially in the looks exchanged between the goat and the woman. The end is just classic! :-)

Monday, September 26, 2011

Basement Jaxx vs. Metropole Orkest

Basement Jaxx vs. Metropole Orkest - HEY U from Sundeep Toor on Vimeo.

What do you get when you mix Basement Jaxx with an Orchestra? Brilliance, that's what! This clip was created by an animator going by the name 'Sundeep Toor' who happened to listen to the song and was so  intrigued by it he decided to make a video.
The style of this is so exotic and vibrant, and compliments the music perfectly. Some of the spacing could've been better maybe... but loads of effort must've gone into this, the characters look fantastic. I find it massively appealing, especially the peacocks about 4 mins in. And I totally understand the draw to animate for this, the music is epic!
This has actually given me some ideas for my rotoscoping assignment... oh yes indeedy!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

How Darrel the Dinosaur Became Depressed...

Here's the final result of my comic assignment. I had a lot of fun drawing this, especially Darrel and Santa! Also I should probably explain the title, as it is exceedingly lame. I've read a lot of Archie comics in my time and their titles usually have a really campy play on words. I wanted to get that same wholesome vibe going throughout this comic too, so it'd be an interesting contrast to the actual theme of it all.
So yes, I'm well aware that the title is quite pathetic, but it's meant to be!!
Enjoy :-)

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

The Uncanny Valley and Other Disturbing Things

This post is in part a response to Frank's comment on the 'Don't Hug Me I'm Scared' video I posted recently, and is also on something I've been meaning to blog about for a while now.
Frank said there was something about that video that made him uneasy, and I completely understand what he means. The makers went way too over-board with the macabre stuff at the end of the clip and it definitely crossed over from entertaining to just a bit too unsettling. Which is a real shame, because I think it ended up ruining what could've been a really interesting and funny clip.
I can't stand it when people go and spoil the potential of something with all that 'shock value' stuff. It's like they don't trust their ideas will reach people unless they find a way to slap us in the face with it. This got me thinking about all the movies I've seen that started off with so much potential, only to be ruined by bad taste in the end.
One that always comes to mind is Jim Carrey's 'A Christmas Carol'. Dicken's classic is a fantastic ghost story which is pretty eerie at times, but this is balanced out perfectly with a healthy dose of wholesome festive charm. However there were parts of Jim Carrey's Christmas Carol that I found down-right terrifying and completely uncalled for, like the door-knocker ghost laughing so hard his jaw comes unhinged and starts flapping madly, or the gradual decay of the ghost of Christmas present (see below- crappy quality video, but it makes my point).

I'm all for a good scare, and think it adds a lot to any adventure story.. but seriously?? That's just tasteless.. and it stripped away whatever charm the movie might have set out to achieve.

Aaaanyway, this takes me to the second part of this post, and to a discovery I've been meaning to blog about for a while now- the 'Uncanny Valley'. And this is something I think that we especially as animators all need to be aware of. Basically the Uncanny Valley is a theory of the robotics professor Masahiro Mori, which states that artificial replication of real human features (such as through robotics and 3D animation) increases steadily in audience appeal as it gets more and more realistic. However there is a massive drop-off in this appeal as the realistic nature of it is just about to reach the real thing itself- and this is where it falls into the zone of the Uncanny Valley. When something becomes so uncannily real- and yet you know it isn't- that instead of inspiring attraction in its audience, it triggers a deep sense of repulsion.
Some excellent examples of 3D animation gone too far are (of course) 'A Christmas Carol', 'The Polar Express', and in my opinion the new 'Tin Tin' movie. Animators have tried so hard to get that perfect look of reality in their models, but we as humans can instantly sense it's unreal and it unsettles us.
I think we need to keep this in mind when considering the appeal of our characters, as it could either make or break them. However the Uncanny Valley can be just as much of a help as a hindrance. Just think- if you have a character that you want to be so hideously repulsive that it makes your audience's skin crawl... mess it up a bit, then make it look as real as possible. Why else do we think zombies are so grotesque? They fit so neatly into the Uncanny Valley..

I even have a chart to demonstrate my point! And here is a link to the Wikipedia entry if you want to know more-  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uncanny_valley

So in conclusion to this massive rant of a blog post; shock tactics should be used sparingly and with careful consideration, and DON'T VENTURE INTO THE UNCANNY VALLEY!! Unless you really want to give someone the wibbly jibblies... :-S