Animator Marty Cooper just released a sequel to his wildly popular Aug(De)Mented Reality video that blends stop motion with hand-illustrated cels that he holds in front of his iPhone while shooting. Whimsical characters interact with both foreground and background elements like clouds, buildings, animals, and even real people. Earlier this summer, Cooper was invited to stop by Adam Savage’s legendary workshop where he discussed his process and animated a short piece incorporating Savage.
Update: Cooper posts many of his animated clips to Instagram.
The Bigger Picture is a new animated short from filmmaker Daisy Jacobs and animator Chris Wilder about two brothers struggling to care for their older monther. The film is notable for its animation technique that blends life-size wall-painted characters who inhabit full-size sets, interacting with real objects. Included here is the trailer and a nice making-of video that goes behind the scenes. The Bigger Picture is currently screening in film festivals around the world and has won more awards than you can shake a pair of leaf-covered sticks at. I seriously can’t wait to see this.
Circle of an Abstract Ritual is the latest stop motion timelapse from artist Jeff Frost (previously) who creates short films that defy description. This latest work gathers hundreds of thousands of photographs taken over the last two years during wildfires, riots, and inside abandoned houses where he created a series of optical illusion paintings. Frost says the film “began as an exploration of the idea that creation and destruction might be the same thing,” and that it is in part “a way to get an ever so slight edge on the unknowable.” Whatever it is, or is not, it’s really up to you to decide. I definitely recommend watching through to the end for the scene with trees—keep in mind the entire film was created without digital special effects or graphics. (via Vimeo Staff Picks)
Designer and woodworker Frank Howarth has a passion for building things with his hands, he makes everything from shelves and chairs to toys and tables. But there’s one thing he might be even more passionate about: showing people how he does it on his YouTube channel. In some of his most popular films, the Howarth removes himself completely to create stop-motion animations with thousands of photos, where the objects appear to build themselves. In the two shown here he builds a trio of bookshelves and a lawn chair. If you liked this, don’t miss the Triumph Spitfire clip. (via The Awesomer)
Animator and director Mikey Please of Parabella Animation Studio just released his latest stop-motion animation project, Marilyn Miller. The film screened at numerous festivals like Sundance and SXSW over the last year, picking up plenty of accolades along the way, and is now available online for the first time. Marilyn Miller is a followup to Please’s BAFTA-winning animation The Eagleman Stag, and makes heavy use of tediously sculpted styrofoam models and complex long-exposure lighting to tell a story of creation and destruction. The film was photographed and animated by Mikey Please and Dan Ojari. And you can see a bit of behind-the-scenes footage here. (via Colossal Submissions)
Update: There’s a great writeup by Jason Sondhi about Marilyn Myller over Short of the Week.
As a quick follow-up to our video from Keith Skretch yesterday, here’s a similar concept from two years ago by Laurin Döpfner who used an industrial sander to grind down logs, electronics, and even a skull in thin layers which he then photographed to create this amazing stop motion video. Each object is comprised of about 100 different photos, a process I can only image was extremely labor intensive.
Waves of Grain is a two minute strata-cut animation by filmmaker Keith Skretch who planed a block of wood in tiny increments and took photographs along the way. The final video reveals a strange sense of motion as the camera moves effortlessly through the block revealing the the sinuous curves of wood grain that appears to ripple like water. If you liked this also check out these fruit and vegetable MRIs from Andy Ellison. (via Colossal Submissions)