Director Rafael Vangelis transforms the unbearable task of watching an endlessly spinning wheel or loading bar into an entertaining and analogue study of self-produced loading mechanisms in his latest short film Analogue Loaders. Using stop motion techniques and traditional animation he turns clay, wood, 3D-printed objects, and even eggs into 3D loaders, dazzling the eye rather than enraging the mind.
Vangelis considers the short film an animated autobiography, as he spends a great chunk of his own life watching projects slowly load and computers crash. “The result,” says Vangelis, “is an homage to all the lost time we collectively spend in digital limbo in the hopes of sudden development on our screen.”
Here’s a lovely bit of experimental visual goodness from Swedish motion designer Anton Woll Söder in collaboration with CypherAudio. Söder shares that the animation began as an exercise to learn more about VFX software Houdini and slowly evolved into the clip you see here. In recent years, the rapid evolution of PCs and the development of software like Houdini and Cinema 4D has created new possibilities for intricate particle-based animations. Prime examples include clips seen previously on Colossal like Cycle and the dance piece from the AICP Awards. You can see more of Söder’s visual effects work on Behance. (via Vimeo Staff Picks)
The full trailer for Loving Vincent (previously here and here), a film examining the life of Vincent van Gogh, has finally been released after nearly six years of creative development. Each of the 62,450 frames for the feature-length film were hand-painted by 115 professional oil painters, and will integrate 94 of Van Gogh’s paintings into the animation. First captured as a live action film, the final oil paintings replicate each shot, recreating the entire film frame-by-frame. Loving Vincent is written and directed by Dorota Kobiela and Hugh Welchman, and produced by Poland’s BreakThru Films and UK’s Trademark Films. You look behind-the-scenes of the film in the video below, as well as keep up-to-date with release information on the film’s Twitter and Facebook.
Here’s a fun series from artist Daniel Barreto who animates infinite loops of flame in these surreal gifs. The brief animations continue his experimentation with light and long exposure photography as seen here last year in his short film Ignight. (via This Isn’t Happiness)
For the Style Frames Design Conference held last November in New York, Tel Aviv-based artist and animator Eran Hilleli was asked to create an opening titles sequence that would set the tone for the event and list the names of various speakers. The result is this short three-minute video of converging characters that’s almost too wonderful to describe. I’ve watched this at least 5 times over the last two months and every time it gives me chills. I wish this was a full-length movie, or more likely a video game, something more immersive to learn more about all the different creatures that appear so briefly. Music by Disasterpiece. (via Vimeo Staff Picks)
As artist John Edmark's sculptures wiggle, wobble, and twist before your eyes like some alien creature, it’s hard to believe that what you’re seeing is a real physical object—but we assure you it is, with a bit of trick photography and some heady mathematics thrown in for good measure. Blooms 2 (a year in the making) is the latest collection of wild strobe-animated sculptures that begin life as computer programs written in Python before being 3D printed and set in motion on a table, but the patterns you see are created, in a sense, by nature itself.
“Blooms are based on the same geometry nature uses in many plant forms, including artichokes, sunflowers, and pinecones, all of which share the same underlying mathematical pattern,” Edmark shares with Colossal. He explains in more detail how each sculpture is designed:
Blooms are 3-D printed sculptures designed to animate when spun under a strobe light. Unlike a 3D zoetrope, which animates a sequence of small changes to objects, a bloom animates as a single self-contained sculpture. The bloom’s animation effect is achieved by progressive rotations of the golden ratio, phi (ϕ), the same ratio that nature employs to generate the spiral patterns we see in pinecones and sunflowers. The rotational speed and strobe rate of the bloom are synchronized so that one flash occurs every time the bloom turns 137.5º (the angular version of phi).
While the strobe is necessary to witness the animation when viewing these pieces in person, for the sake of creating this video filmmaker Charlie Nordstrom set the camera to a short shutter speed that freezes individual “frames” of the spinning sculpture.
Many of Edmark’s pieces are now in galleries and permanent museum collections around the world. You can see several of his sculptures right now at the Exploratorium in San Francisco and the Technorama in Winterthur, Switzerland. You can also see some of his first designs in his original Blooms video, and for what it’s worth, we also carry his amazing Helicone sculpture in the Colossal Shop.