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Animation

40 Animators Around the Globe ‘Pass the Ball’ in a Collaborative Rube Goldberg-Esque Sequence

January 28, 2022

Grace Ebert

Forty months in the making, “Pass the Ball” is a delightful and eccentric example of the creative possibilities of collaboration. The animated compilation, which was conceptualized and organized by Nathan Boey, centers on a small red orb that shapeshifts, bounces across the frame, crashes into other objects, and ultimately, flies through a diverse assortment of three-second clips. Each scenario was created by one of 40 animators around the world, who, as the title suggests, “pass the ball” to the next person, resulting in a varied display of styles and techniques from stop-motion to digital. Watch the full sequence above, and find the list of collaborators on Vimeo. You also might enjoy this 3D animation of 100 characters and a mashup of Olympic jumps and tucks.

 

 

 



Illustration

Human Minds Burst into Splashes of Color in Surreal Digital Illustrations by Carolina Rodríguez Fuenmayor

January 18, 2022

Grace Ebert

All images © Carolina Rodríguez Fuenmayor, shared with permission

Bogotá-based illustrator Carolina Rodríguez Fuenmayor draws portraits and intimate scenarios brimming with surreal elements and spots of color. In her digital pieces, Rodríguez Fuenmayor tends to obscure subjects’ faces with bright bursts, masses of florals, and whirlpool-like ripples that cloud their minds and explode into their surroundings. The vivid illustrations peek into the workings of the human psyche and the idiosyncratic commotion it produces. “I wouldn’t say that there’s a particular feeling I’m focused on,” she shares. “I infuse all my pieces with a mix of random, confusing, and funny emotions about what I think life is about.”

Pick up a print and explore more of Rodríguez Fuenmayor’s imaginative pieces on Instagram.

 

 

 



Illustration

Energetic Explosions of Color and Doodles Encircle the Subjects of Russ Mills’s Digital Portraits

December 9, 2021

Grace Ebert

All images © Russ Mills, shared with permission

Artist Russ Mills (previously) describes his chaotic, illustrated portraits as being ruled by the absurd. Bright bursts of color, paint splatters, and doodles scrawl across the canvas and surround single figures with a mishmash of markings. “I try to convey the ridiculousness of the world we all share in a way that only I really relate to,” he tells Colossal.

Currently based near Brighton, Mills balances analog and digital techniques in his practice. He begins each piece with a sketch and scanned source materials that become the crayon-like textures and thick brushstrokes in his final works. Once he places the central figure, he layers an array of markings that both conceal and help define the subject, and the resulting portraits feature curled edges, scraps of paper haphazardly taped together, and bold streaks and splotches.

Shop prints of the pieces shown here, and explore a larger collection of Mills’s works on Behance and Instagram.

 

 

 



Animation Art

Artificial Organisms: Shimmering Digital Creatures Undulate and Pulse with Light in Maxim Zhetskov’s New Film

November 9, 2021

Grace Ebert

In “Artificial Organisms,” Russian director Maxim Zhestkov (previously) enlivens machine intelligence to create palpitating marine organisms that radiate with vibrant bands of light. The hulking, life-like specimens, which are comprised of countless individual spheres, are presented floating in undulating masses or enveloping a stark white structure in groups evocative of a coral reef. Each piece fuses the artificial and organic, producing “a bizarre world of mesmerizing digital creatures,” Zhestkov says. “A combination of biological symmetry and impeccable digital matter, they are a representation of budding artificial intelligence.” To watch more of the director’s projects, head to Vimeo, Instagram, and Behance.

 

 

 



Art

Fantastical Digital Paintings Position Wildlife in Unnaturally Colorful Environments

October 14, 2021

Grace Ebert

All images courtesy of Grove Square Galleries, shared with permission

Photographic artist Jim Naughten casts a fantastical, candy-colored lens over luxuriant ecosystems and surreal animal portraits in Eremozoic, a solo exhibition on view at Grove Square Galleries through November 18. Comprised of digitally altered compositions, the series centers on rhinos, manatees, and myriad wild animals in strange, unearthly settings: a tall brown bear stands on its hind legs in a field of bright pink grass, a gorilla rests in similarly vibrant foliage, and orangutans swing through leafy branches in shades of blue.

While the animals usually are isolated in true color, the backdrops evoke infrared photography, and Naughten’s unnatural alterations tinge the otherwise realistic imagery with magical elements. The artist says the manipulations convey humanity’s ever-growing disconnect with the environment, which he explains in a statement:

I’m interested in how, in the evolutionary blink of an eye, humans have come to dominate and overwhelm the planet and how far our relationship with the natural world has fundamentally and dangerously shifted from that of our ancestors. I hope the work will create awareness and discourse about this disconnection, our fictionalized ideas about nature and possibilities for positive change.

Although the pieces venture into a strange realm of kaleidoscopic details, they have biological reality at their core, and the exhibition title, Eremozoic, refers to the current era of the earth’s evolution. Biologist and writer E. O. Wilson introduced the term to characterize this “period of mass extinction due to human activity. The Eremozoic Age is alternatively referred to as The Age of Loneliness, and this sense of dislocation and disorientation is captured in Naughten’s depiction of nature as an unfamiliar, unnatural realm.”

In addition to the collection shown here, Naughten shares a variety of otherworldly renderings on his site and Instagram. (via Creative Boom)

 

 

 



Dance Photography

Amorphous Explosions of Particles Envelop Dancers in Digital Compositions by Jean-Yves Lemoigne

September 28, 2021

Grace Ebert

All images © Jean-Yves Lemoigne, shared with permission

In his aptly titled series Dancing with Particles, photographer Jean-Yves Lemoigne accentuates the curves of bodies in motion with coiled ribbons, paint-like splashes, and bursts of bright dots. Created digitally with a focus on texture and complementary colors, the sculptural compositions follow the long lines of a leg or erupt from a torso in amorphous swirls, creating an interaction between the often airborne figures and Lemoigne’s CGI additions. You can see the rest of the series and find more from the photographer, who splits his time between New York and Paris, on Behance and Instagram.