Animation

Section



Animation

We: A Shape-Shifting Animation Explores Connection and Constraint

October 13, 2020

Grace Ebert

In Rita Louro and Martina Stiftinger’s “We,” abstract forms undergo a series of transformations that evince both their malleable properties and inflexibility. Two-toned liquids gush into bulbous pools, fabric strips tether a diverse array of solid shapes in a single unit, and a rock-like substance cracks and crumbles into disparate pieces. While the amorphous forms are different in texture, hue, and structure, they overlap and join together in new configurations.

Louro and Stiftinger describe the animation as a visual essay that explores connection through “a metaphorical study of interpersonal relationships and social constraints” and evokes personal experience. Set to serene audio by Los Angeles-based sound designer Ambrose Yu, “We” takes a captivating and calming approach to examining the current cultural moment.

To dive further into Lisbon-based Louro’s projects, head to Instagram, Vimeo, and Behance. Follow Stiftinger, who works and lives between the United Kingdom and Austria, on Vimeo and Behance.

 

 

 



Animation Music

Who Dat: A Suave Pigeon Struts Down the Sidewalk and Shows Off its Groove Thang in a New Music Video

October 8, 2020

Grace Ebert

The swaggering pigeon in Emmit Fenn’s new music video might upend the notion that peacocks are the proudest avians. Animated and directed by Patrick Jean, “Who Dat” opens on a quiet street corner before zooming in on the lone bird. As the bass drops, the pigeon begins a subtle strut down the street while it grooves to the beat. Soon, the bird reveals in its dancing skills after a shake of its tail feather. To see more of the Los Angeles-based director’s humorous animations, head to Vimeo.

 

 

 



Animation Design

The World's Largest Robot Walks, Kneels, and Points Toward the Sky Above Japan

October 5, 2020

Grace Ebert

All images courtesy of Shutterstock

An iconic sci-fi character comes to life in the form of an enormous droid that looms 60-feet above Japan. A project of Gundam Factory Yokohama, it’s the tallest robot in the world, and after months of engineering, this life-sized bot now can swivel its head, kneel, point upward, and even walk, despite weighing an incredible 55,500 pounds.

RX-78-2 Gundam robot is straight from Mobile Suit Gundam, the 1979 animated television series that originally was directed by Yoshiyuki Tomino and animated by Sunrise, before turning into a massive franchise with more than 50 films, television spin-offs, manga, and video games. It was slated for unveiling at a new amusement park dedicated to the bot this October, but the opening has been postponed due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. If you have the chance to visit the Tokyo area in the next year, however, Gundam will be stationed in the Port of Yokohama, which is just south of the city. (via My Modern Met)

 

 

 



Animation Illustration

Download Hundreds of Frames from Studio Ghibli Animations for Video-Chat Backgrounds for Free

September 29, 2020

Grace Ebert

Ponyo on the cliff

Thanks to Studio Ghibli, you can hide piles of laundry and errant messes while videoconferencing from home with one of 400 stills from classic animations. The renowned Japanese animation studio recently released an online archive of images— which boasts iconic frames from films like Hayao Miyazaki’s Ponyo and Spirited Away and Isao Takahata’s The Tale of the Princess Kaguya available—for free download. Each month, Studio Ghibli will add an additional eight images, mostly derived from new works.

This recent collection appears to be an extension of the studio’s release of video-conferencing backgrounds earlier this year. Explore the entire archive and watch for upcoming projects, which include a new Miyazaki-directed film, on the studio’s site. (via Hyperallergic)

 

Ponyo on the cliff

Spirited Away

Spirited Away

When Marnie Was There

When Marnie Was There

The Wind Rises

The Wind Rises

The Borrower Arrietty

 

 



Animation

An Intimate Short Film Highlights 2020's Crises through Exquisitely Surreal Scenes

September 22, 2020

Grace Ebert

Set to subdued music, Nicolas Lichtle’s short film titled “à la fin…” is an unusually ethereal depiction of the crises climaxing in 2020. The delicate animation flows through a series of lightly-hued scenes that explore reactions to COVID-19, the wildfires raging across the planet, and the endless distractions of technology. “It’s a moment of introspection, very intimate, staged through a succession of small moments imbued with poetry, absurdity, and sometimes surrealism…” Lichtle writes.

Many of the anonymous characters’ faces are obscured by a plant, digital device, or cloth mask, and they undertake both mundane and bizarre tasks that critique contemporary life: An unassuming man runs on a treadmill while someone stands nearby to douse him with disinfectant, a figure with a bowling ball head shouts through a megaphone at upright pins, and two women happily wave at a distant earth set ablaze.

Lichtle is based in Paris and has an extensive collection of films on his site. Follow his critically-minded projects on Vimeo. (via swissmiss)

 

 

 



Animation

The Attention Economy: An Animation Visualizes the Endless Onslaught of Digital Distractions

September 21, 2020

Grace Ebert

If you’ve scrolled through Twitter while reading Jenny Odell’s How to Do Nothing or Cal Newport’s Digital Minimalism, you understand the wide-reaching grip technology has on our attention. A new project by London-based animator Olga Makarchuk visualizes the daily abundance of digital distractions, from texts to social media pings to neverending email. Through quirky illustrations that are constantly in motion, “The Attention Economy” captures the modern desire to scroll endlessly and grab a device when there’s a moment of downtime. It’s based on research from James Williams, a former Google employee, who’s critical of the ways companies capitalize on distraction and have turned attention into a commodity.

Makarchuk has worked with a variety of media organizations and brands to tell a diverse array of stories ranging from the effects of anthropocentrism to the life of an Olympian. To watch more of her work, head to Vimeo and Instagram.

 

 

 

A Colossal

Highlight

Sailing Ship Kite