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Photography

A Mesmerizing Short Film Imitates Water Flowing Across the Earth with Ink and Dried Pigments

January 28, 2021

Grace Ebert

You’d be forgiven for mistaking Roman De Giuli’s new short film for aerial footage of Earth’s outer crust. As its name suggests, though, “SATELLIKE” is a mesmerizing timelapse that mimics water gushing through canyons and seeping over mineral-speckled regions with liquid ink.

The German filmmaker, who’s behind Terracollage and this hypnotic work about magnetism, created the topographic features on paper using sand, jade, malachite, and a variety of historic pigments dried to imitate their counterparts embedded within the planet. Mixing natural hues and jewel tones, the substances were reconstituted with water and sour flow release mediums, creating a stunning imitation of seismic shifts on Earth.

In total, the project took four months to complete before it was unveiled at the National Palace Museum in Taipei. “The results look different from my usual approach, way more realistic and less otherworldly. I was excited about the aesthetics of the images and decided to do an individual piece. Although this is the final result for now, it feels more like I’m at the very beginning,” De Giuli writes on Vimeo.

 

 

 



Animation Music

A Mesmerizing Rendering of Fiona Apple's Lips Dance Across the Screen in the 'Shameika' Music Video

January 27, 2021

Grace Ebert

Fiona Apple’s Fetch the Bolt Cutters was one of the few good things to come out of 2020, with the Grammy-nominated track “Shameika” even resulting in a heartwarming reunion between the singer and the schoolmate who inspired it. The now-iconic piano ballad is paired with an equally alluring music video created by graphic designer Matthias Brown, whose figurative gifs we’ve featured previously on Colossal, and follows a black-and-white rendering of Apple’s lips that shapeshift as she mouths the lyrics.

The video took a few years to complete, a lengthy process Brown documented in a timelapse and that began with rotoscoping, or tracing, videos of Apple’s face while she sang. The New York City-based designer then animated each drawing frame-by-frame and set it to the track. “I tried working directly analog, but my timing wasn’t working well with the music. I had a digital version of the animation completed, then printed every frame out and traced it using brush and ink,” he says. “All in all, there are about 4,000 frames. Scanning alone took about 20 hours.”

Brown says plans are in the works to sell stills from the video to raise money for Seeding Sovereignty and Harlem Children’s Zone. You can follow the designer’s most recent projects, which include a plafyul series of alphabet animations, on his Tumblr, Traceloops.

 

 

 



Dance

A 9-Year-Old Dancer Grooves to an Intensely Choreographed Routine and Clocks 10,000 Steps in Just Three Minutes

January 26, 2021

Grace Ebert

It’d be difficult for most of us to move as gracefully as nine-year-old Lilyana Ilunga, but a new campaign by the Swedish nonprofit Generation Pep just wants to get young people on their feet. Set to a revamped version of a 2007 track by French EDM musicians Justice, “DANCE 10000” showcases the young prodigy, who flaunts her moves from the second she wakes up and slips on one of the many pairs of sneakers strewn about her room. Ilunga keeps grooving onto the subway platform, through the halls at school—she even has a quick competition with the janitor—and all the way back to her bedroom, shoes smoking.

Although Ilunga clocking 10,000 steps in mere minutes is slightly exaggerated, Generation Pep released tutorials to guide kids through the intensely choreographed routine. Directed by Filip Nilsson, the campaign was created in response to the World Health Organization’s data that more than 340 million children and young adults are overweight or obese.

 

 

 



Animation

A Brilliant Studio Ghibli-Style Ad for Travel Oregon Imagines the State as an Adventurous Dreamland

January 26, 2021

Grace Ebert

Imagine Oregon’s hot springs, hiking trails, and sand-dune escapades “only slightly exaggerated.” An advertisement for Travel Oregon entertains that enhanced view of the western state as it paints it in a magical light, Studio Ghibli-style: cloud figures saunter through the sky, a rock pulls a lever to shift the world from night to day, and packs of dogs frolic in the countryside. Evoking the aesthetics and fantastical imagery of the iconic Japanese animation studio, the promotional piece is the second ad for the tourism agency by creative agency Wieden+Kennedy, production company Psyop, and animation house Sun Creature—watch the equally whimsical 2018 iteration on YouTube—and is issued with a playful reminder that Oregon is “a 100% real place you can visit.” For those of us not traveling any time soon, the agency also released free downloadable stills from the animation to fulfill our wanderlust from home. (via Kottke)

Update: This article originally failed to mention that Wieden+Kennedy helmed the creative behind this ad.

 

 

 



Art

A Short Film Chronicles Mural Fest Kosovo, Void Projects' Initiative to Infuse a War-Torn City with Public Art

January 20, 2021

Grace Ebert

“At that time it wasn’t easy for me to be in the public with my camera because the country was very sensitive to reporters like me,” photojournalist Hazir Reka tells a group of muralists. “Being in the public with a camera was no different to being in public with a weapon because of how much it could affect reality.” Reka’s referring to a tumultuous time in Kosovo’s history when the region was in the midst of war, an experience he shares with the artists who traveled to the region in September 2020 for Mural Fest Kosovo.

Organized by the art collective Void Projects (previously), which is helmed by Axel Void, the initiative sought to revitalize the public spaces within Ferizaj, a small city desolated by war. Fifteen international muralists—the list includesAruallan, Emilio Cerezo, Doa Oa, Alba Fabre, Maria Jose Gallardo, and Zane Prater—gathered for the project that U.K.-based filmmaker Doug Gillen documents in a new short film.

Throughout “Change,” Gillen follows ten of the artists as they immerse themselves in local life and engage with the city’s youngest residents through workshops and school initiatives that directly involved the children and teens in the creative process. Their resulting artworks are a reflection of these interactions and large-scale depictions of the area’s ecology, citizens, and cultural milieu. While each is distinct in aesthetic—Aruallan and Void produced a photorealistic rendering of an 11-year-old boy they met on the street, while Fabre’s ethereal mural depicts an unknown woman lying in the water in traditional clothing, for example—they’re all infused with themes surrounding the city’s unique environment and more universal understandings of shared humanity.

“The greater this connection, the more effective the work. Exploring the human stories of Ferizaj in this way, at this very unique moment in time, felt like an important opportunity to document meaningfully,” Gillen said.

Watch the full film above to dive further into Kosovo’s history, and see all of the murals and glimpses into the artists’ experiences collaborating with Ferizaj residents on Void Projects’ Instagram.

 

 

 



Animation Art Illustration

Around the Block: David Zinn's Quirky Chalk Cartoons Spring to Life in a New Short Film

January 15, 2021

Grace Ebert

If you’ve walked the streets of Ann Arbor, Michigan, in the last few decades, you’ve probably spotted the wide-eyed monsters and mischievous dragons of David Zinn (previously). Since 1987, the artist has been drawing chalk-and-charcoal creatures in site-specific works that wash away with the rain. Drain pipes become robotic dogs, a pillar morphs into a giant pencil, and a green monster pops out of a brick walkway.

A new short film directed by Jonnie Lewis dives into Zinn’s practice by animating his signature cartoon cast that greets the artist as he walks around the city. Watch “Around the Block” on Lewis’s Vimeo, and check out more of Zinn’s eccentric creatures on Instagram.  (via Laughing Squid)

 

 

 

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