Thursday, October 21, 2010

Coraline vs. puppeteer: how stop-motion animations are made

A look into how stop motion was done on Coraline. Pretty sweet!!


Friday, October 15, 2010

Hi, Sally Menke (1953-2010)

Hi, Sally Menke (1953-2010) 
  “When it comes to the editing, I write with Sally”, says Quentin Tarantino, in an interview that precedes the Hi Sally gag reel (a compilation of footage put together from film footage outtakes) from 2007′s "Death Proof." Actors and crew would turn to the camera to send a message to Sally in the editing room, to cheer her up.  Sally Menke worked as an editor with Tarantino on all his movies. Sadly the award-winning film editor Sally JoAnne Menke , who had worked on such films as "Pulp Fiction," "Kill Bill" and "Jackie Brown," recently died.  While the circumstances of her untimely and tragic death are still unknown, what is known is that the world has lost a great artist, friend, colleague and family member. (Most sincere condolences to those close to her.)

  Tarantino has freely admitted that editing with Menke was like working with a writing partner, and no doubt the director’s trademark ability to hold and savor the tension of a beat well past the point when other directors would have moved on—or keep an audience riveted by his free-form pop soliloquies—flowed from Menke’s artful cutting. How else could he have gotten away with an opening scene in "Inglourious Basterds" that occupies practically a whole film reel? Or danced delightfully around the meandering diner conversation that sets up "Reservoir Dogs"? Or found such depth of feeling in Robert Forster’s stoic, steady smile in "Jackie Brown"? Arguably, Samuel L. Jackson owes much of his reputation and his career to Menke’s judicious close-up choices in "Pulp Fiction".

In 2009, Menke talked extensively about her working relationship with Quentin, in an interview that can be read here. Click here to check out her IMDB page and marvel at the body of her work.  Below are two of the above mentioned gag reels:

Watch these videos now:
(WARNING: Some scenes are not appropriate for all ages and contain course language, and/or extreme violence)

Hi, Sally!


Saturday, October 9, 2010

Pixar - A Human Story of Computer Animation

 I came across this video awhile ago, at 1:41:48 in length it is a bit long, BUT as a fascinating and in-depth interview and discussion about the origins of computer animation it is worth the time to checkout and  features:

Brad Bird, Writer/Director, The Incredibles, Pixar Animation Studios, Ed Catmull, Co-Founder and President, Pixar Animation Studios, Alvy Ray Smith, Co-Founder of four centers of computer graphics excellence (Altamira, Pixar, Lucasfilm, New York Tech) and a Microsoft Fellow, Andrew Stanton, Writer/ Director, Finding Nemo, Pixar Animation Studios , and Michael Rubin, Moderator, Author of Droidmaker: George Lucas and the Digital Revolution

  "The movies and innovations of these award-winning pioneers sit at the intersection of technology and art."

  Watch the video now:
[Recorded May 16, 2005]

Friday, October 8, 2010

The Illusionist

  A trailer for Sylvain Chomet's new film "L'illusioniste"

  Watch the video now:

Bonus feature: 
Les Triplettes de Belleville:
  From Director / Writer Sylvain Chomet a trailer for his 2003 acclaimed animated feature film "The Triplets of Belleville"

  Watch the video now:

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

1 full year - time lapse - The Longest Way 1.0

I saw this awhile back and well... it kind of blew my mind and made me want to take my camera for a walk.  A stunning real life adventure shared...

The Longest Way 1.0 - one year walk/beard grow time lapse:
by Christoph Rehage
November 9th 2007 - November 13th 2008
one year on foot - 4646km through China
unlimited beard & hair growth
musical score by the kingpins (​theoneandonlykingpins ) and zhu fengbo

Watch the video now:

For more info check out Christoph Rehage's website "the" where he has posted his extensive travel diary, starting from day 1 (Nov 9th 2007), and more.

Monday, October 4, 2010

“Sintel” by Colin Levy

 An independently produced short film, initiated by the Amsterdam-based Blender Foundation, directed by Savannah College of Art and Design Student, Colin Levy. It is the third film produced by the foundation—the first two were Elephants Dream (2006) and Big Buck Bunny (2008).

With initial funding provided by thousands of donations via the internet, this fifteen minute film was produced in the studio of the Amsterdam Blender Institute, by an international team of artists and developers. Blender funds these films primarily to advance their software and improve their technology. For a small team with limited funds, I think this short is quite an accomplishment. For more behind-the-scenes information, check the Sintel production blog. But first, here’s the finished film:

  Watch this video now:

Bonus feature: 
Big Buck Bunny:
  From Blender Foundation comes the short film "Big Buck Bunny" which tells the story of a giant rabbit with a heart bigger than himself. When one sunny day three rodents rudely harass him, something snaps... and the rabbit ain't no bunny anymore! In the typical cartoon tradition he prepares the nasty rodents a comical revenge.

   Watch this video now:

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Gesture vs Lip-sync

Following up on my last 2 posts --- here’s evidence that great acting and gestures will sell your shot, more than lip-sync.

  Watch this video now:

It works really well and makes me laugh every time.
So make sure your character’s body sells the line before you go crazy trying to get the lip-sync right.


Friday, October 1, 2010

Great Reference for Animating Facial Expressions

  Kids are AWESOME!  Generally unhindered their raw reactions and interactions to things is so honest and expressive... which of course makes for some great reference and analysis for animation (:

  So following up on my last post  here are a couple fun  videos done observing kids. 

   Photographer Robbie Cooper shows how focused young video-game players can be.

  Watch this video now:

The Marshmallow Test:
  Done by Igniter Media, in this popular test, several kids wrestle with waiting to eat a marshmallow in hopes of a bigger prize.

  Watch this video now: 

Bonus feature:
Robbie Cooper Immersion:
   Robbie Cooper talks through some of the ideas behind his Immersion series, which was exhibited at The National Media Museum in 2010.

  Watch this video now:

Click here to see related post: "Facial Subtlety & Nonverbal Communication"
Click here to see related post: "Learn to Speak Body"

Happy animating (: