After watching the second presidential debate last night, and reading all the fall out this morning, I decided I needed a break from politics 2016. Below is a trippy, mind-bending video from BlinkmyBrain” featuring Led Zeppelin and some crazy CG work.
It helped me not think about how screwed up this election is for a few minutes, and that made me think others might not want to think about the election for a bit either. So I am sharing. Turn off your mind, tune into the Zeppelin, and forget about this year’s elections for a bit.
Over the last ten years, there has been a steady shift on the internet for news agencies and content creators to produce more video. The New York Times has been an absolute champion of this with a steady stream of well-produced documentary news shorts that have bolstered readership and helped the paper transition from a traditional news source to a multimedia powerhouse with content that rivals any broadcast news agency. Another online source that consistently blows me away with animation and visual information is Vox. They are producing some serious animated content that teaches and presents information with a high production value that is engaging and compelling for the viewer. Case in point, the video below on American / Cuban relations dating back to the 1850’s. Even if you aren’t really into history, it’s hard not to be drawn into this video and watch the entire 4 minute animated short. Why? Because it is so well done. Great visuals, solid script, smooth narration, and relevant information about a current event. Hat tip to the producers at Vox. Nicely done.
Anyone who works in graphic design, broadcast, video or advertising, knows that time is usually pretty tight when it comes to getting work done. Deadlines are always shifting, last minute jobs are dropped in your lap and due by the end of the day. I’m not griping, I’m just saying, and that is why I am always on the lookout for content that I can use when I am in a jam and don’t have time to create it from scratch. Take the video below from Peter Quinn. It is the promo for his latest release, PQ Mo-Bits, a collection of “obvious, everyday icons that a motion designer needs to keep handy.” This guy does great work and trust me there are some of these that I can use on a regular basis. I’m not being lazy, I’m being thrifty because I don’t always have the luxury of time to create something this good.
I was originally going to post about the animation in the video below, but after digging into what Flattr Plus is about things kind of morphed. First off the animation from Sebastianbap is really quite nice. the video is made up of simple shapes and a storyline that keeps you interested as you build to the payoff. The payoff is for a new company that lets you fund content you care about, rather than having web pages crammed full of ads. Frankly I see this as the future of the internet. As ad blocking increases, content providers have to figure out new ways to keep the lights on. Web advertising has always had horrible returns. Banner ads have abysmal clickthrough rates, modal popup windows are annoying as all hell and every bit as ineffective, so what is a content provider to do? Turn to something like Flattr Plus would be a good start.
Here is a little Friday afternoon time waster for you. A series of animated typographic treatments from Starov Evgeniy a student in St. Petersburg Russia. That’s right this is student work. This is a testament to how far we have come in the field of graphic design in the last 20 years. I couldn’t imagine creating 12 of these when I was in art school. It would have taken me an entire semester to illustrate and film a single one. Awesome work Starov.
The video below took a year to complete. Hyperrealistic statuettes of wrestling talent were hand sculpted in Maya and later shaded to look like marble. if you count the number of figures and then combine it with the environment they are placed in you’ll understand why. This is an enormous project for any team to tackle, but the end result is one solid promotion for Royal Rumble.
The Royal Rumble spot is a reimagined and rebranded rethink, conceptualized from the ground up to showcase one of the big four events that WWE produces throughout the year. It is a retelling of the storied past and grand moments from events past and those yet to be written. Perfectly paced, with a solid script and voice over the visuals hook you and pull you into the spot.
“Labored on over the course of a year, hyperrealistic statuettes of wrestling talent were hand sculpted and then later shaded to look like marble in Maya. An enormous and detailed tableau provides the backdrop for the reimagining, referencing structures from ancient kings on the left and progressing to more modern structures that nod towards the robber barons of the industrial revolution. A leitmotif of ornamental detailing weaves itself throughout the piece creating a cohesion that culminates with the apex, a ring that all the competitors aspire to conquer.”
VP Production & Graphics | Chris Siciliano
Senior Managing Director | Kevin Callahan
Art Director | Jacques Broquard
Set Supervisor & Designer | Gib Patterson
Modeler | Jeff Lee
Lead Character Sculptor | Hossein Diba
Character Sculptor | Ebrahim Diba
Character Sculptor | Daniel Peteuil
Character Supervisor | Sean Thorpe
Animation TD | Matthew Thurber
Character Animator | Cilian Tung
Motion Graphics Animator | David Durand
Rigger | Hayden McGowan
Lighting TD | Matthew Gleason
Lighter & Compositor | Paul Wei
Lighter & Compositor | Jason Garrison
They say practice makes perfect, and I have to agree with that. If you want to master something, it requires time and effort to refine your skills. Somethings require more than others and the video below is a prime example of someone who has polished their skills and continues to refine them. This fun little animation by Jordan Coelho was created as a “practice piece to explore and animate a style with simple shapes, and train myself.” Nice work Jordan, I think the training is paying off quite well. The video has a nice look to it. The timing is spot on with a solid use realistic fall off and elasticity. The sound design works with the elements on stage and it keeps your audience engaged. I think this guy might have a career in animation ahead of him.