Thursday, June 30, 2011

Photo of the Day - boots

boots by Lisa Stang
boots, a photo by Lisa Stang on Flickr.

Visual Creatures

After my last post I dug a little deeper into who the Visual Creatures really are. Headed by John Cranston and Ryan McNeely Visual Creatures is a collaborative effort to create new and innovative works across a wide variety of artistic disciplines. I love their philosophy and I highly suggest you view their site and check out their work.

Above is a wonderful selection from their portfolio. A music video for "That Tree" by Snoop Dogg and Kid Cudi. Like all of their work this video is eye catching and fun.

HBO's Funny Or Die Presents Season II

This one comes to us from VisualCreatures. A montage of retro title screens for HBO's Funny or Die. I love the color, animation, and sound that went into these clips. It can be hard to get that retro feeling to look just right and VisualCreatures captured it well.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Free Music Archive

I think we all know that music plays an integral role in a video.  It creates emotion and drama while setting the mood and pace.  However, if one doesn't have a good composer buddy, and I don't, then we need to find our music elsewhere.  One place I tend to frequent is Free Music Archive.  This site has a lot of independent artists with music to download.  Usage rights differ depending on the artist but it is still a great place to get inspired and find some new tunes for your videos.  One particular artist I came across recently is Cosmic Analog Ensemble.  Their album Navigations Nocturnes has some really wonderful tracks to sync video too. I especially love "Mutatis Mutandis." Check it out!

Miss Cupcake

My girlfriend recently asked me to create a "lady cupcake." This was the result.  Created in Adobe Illustrator.

Photo of the Day - Untitled

Untitled by darkshapes
Untitled, a photo by darkshapes on Flickr.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Day at the Races

Follow That Blimp                                                                                     fig. 1

Lisa at the Race                                                                                         fig. 2

Drag Race                                                                                                   fig. 3

Elbows to the Fence                                                                                   fig. 4

ICEE Stand                                                                                                 fig. 5

Lisa in the Pit                                                                                             fig. 6

The Crowd                                                                                                  fig. 7
Well I broke my drag racing cherry (see fig. 3), and I must admit I feel like more of a man because of it.  I had a lot of fun this weekend in Norwalk, Ohio drinking beer, smelling gas, and hearing engines all while having my shirt off.  Granted Lisa (see fig. 2, 6) and I never would have made it had it not been for my brilliant idea to follow the Goodyear blimp (see fig. 1) when we got lost.  I may not have a great sense of direction but I can always find my way.

Photo of the Day - NY Streetscapes 374

NY Streetscapes 374 by stevensiegel260
NY Streetscapes 374, a photo by stevensiegel260 on Flickr.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Photo of the Day - gyros

gyros by Lisa Stang

gyros, a photo by Lisa Stang on Flickr.
This photo was taken of me at the drag races in Norwalk, OH by my girlfriend Lisa Stang. Check out more of her Polaroid work here.

Protest Zapping

A simple idea executed in a fun way. Check out this little animation from Max Moertl and feel free to browse more of his work here.

Bela: L'Homme Chat

This is a wonderful shot film from Paul Trillo that follows the day in the life of a street performer named Bela Erdei or "the cat man." I love the shots, I love the story, I love the color, I love the typography and design (the use of text over close-ups of fabric was an ingenious idea), but above all I love cats.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Team Coco on Final Cut X

So I am sure you have all been hearing about the new Final Cut Pro and how "awesome" it is. Well here are the editors from Conan to tell us a little bit more. Enjoy.

Photo of the Day - Eleonora

Eleonora, a photo by °Giulietta° on Flickr.
Via Flickr:
Model: Eleonora Agostini

© Giulia Torra

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Terminator 2 Stop Motion

I don't know if there is any way better to celebrate one of the greatest action movie's 20th birthday than an unbelievable stop motion animation.  For the fans of T2, sit back and enjoy this masterpiece by Rymdreglage on Youtube. Also check out some of their other amazing work here.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Recent Photography

 Lisa on beach at East Harbor State Park                                                    fig. 1

Trunk at Wildwood Park Red Trail                                                           fig. 2

Lisa's Back at Wildwood Park Red Trail                                                 fig. 3

Shrubs at Wildwood Park                                                                      fig. 4

Beach at East Harbor State Park                                                                fig. 5

Just developed a roll. Some of the stuff on the beach (see fig. 1, 5) came out a bit over exposed but I like the effect. Also played around with using text and photo (see fig. 4). This is an aesthetic I really enjoy when done well. All photos were taken with a Pentax K1000. Check out more on my flickr here.

Photo of the Day - Nothing is One

Via Flickr:
Lily (Mamiya RZ67 pro ii) avec Ektar 100

User Submitted

I love seeing new work and searching for great things online. I love even more when great work comes to me.

This is a teaser film from Shaun Pitz for his new animated short film Espresso Manifesto.

This abstract beauty about artistic creation comes to us from The sons of Stan Brakhage.

Keep up the great work guys!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Spike Solutions #2

A really creative and abstract technique from Jacob Niedzwiecki. Check out more of his work here.

"Spike Solutions is an ongoing series of screen tests based on generative compositing techniques.

In this screen test, the video in any zone of the left half is sampled (from that same zone) from the video in the same location on the right half. All the videos start almost in sync, with a slight offset, so you can see movements 'ripple' from the bottom right to the top left in the grid.

As they play, a stochastic (fancy word for 'random') process gradually jumps individual clips forward in time."

Camp Swish

Just a little video I made for the Vimeo Weekend Project while I was camping up at East Harbor with my friends and family. The requirements for this weekend's project were very simple, create a "swish blog". To do this all you have to do is begin and end every clip by moving the camera in an upward motion, pretty fun right? I brought my HD GoPro along which I have been trying to use more. I took the footage into Color to work more on getting that antique look I talked about in a previous post. Hope you enjoy.

Smears, Multiples and Other Animation Gimmicks

Check out this tumblr for examples of smears and multiples. Not only are they a good tool for making your animations have more life, but I think they just look interesting in their own right.


All you tennis lovers out there check this out. Great design from Bryancu on Vimeo, I think the elegant approach really compliments the sport of tennis. The lack of visual makes the audience reactions that much more thrilling as well. Check out more of Bryanku's work at his site.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Makoto Shinkai - Neko no Shuukai

I must admit, although it does blow my cover, my affinity for cats and anime is quite great. This little piece just happens to mix the two so I couldn't deprive you of that.

And here is the making of for those who want to dive a little deeper into the technical aspects of animating cats.

Liam Bailey - It's not the Same

Just kick back, relax, and start your weekend with Liam Bailey. A wonderfully cinematic music video brought to us by Alexander Brown.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Add Vintage Color To Your Video Footage

So a really popular thing going on right now is making video footage look more antique and vintage.  There are a lot of expensive softwares out there with presets that will help you do this, like Nick Campbell's Vintage Film for Looks.  But I figure why spend the money on something you can do easily yourself?

The easiest way for me to think about it is, how do I achieve this effect in Photoshop when working with a still image, and then how can I translate this to video. Well I just happened to find a tutorial on the Tuts+ Network in the PhotoTuts section. Click here to find it.

After going through that tutorial you will notice that a lot of the effect is achieved through playing with curves and then adding a few adjustment layers as you see fit. In short, experiment. So I went into Color with a piece of footage I shot camping last week with my HD Go Pro camera.

The first thing I did was take the curves and mimic exactly what the tutorial showed me (see above).

Next I just played around with adjustment layers and effects to get the look I wanted. As you can see I mimicked the tutorial's Magenta hue adjustment layer by adding a low opacity Magenta color to the effect hierarchy and I just added some grain to give it a more dated feel (see above).

Voila, it is just that simple. Some other things to keep in mind are keeping your contrast low, or lowering it. I eventually want to add some vignetting and blur for depth of field.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Toronto Urban Film Festival

I am thinking about entering the Toronto Urban Film Festival. It's an interesting festival where everyone enters 60 second silent videos and animations. What is especially unique about this festival is that it reaches 1.3 million daily commuters on the ONESTOP TTC subway platform screens. This year's guest judge is Atom Egoyan. Check out his work here.

I want to submit my video "Dizzy Redux". I don't really have the time to create something specific for TUFF and this video can be trimmed to a minute and lose its sound without hurting it too much.

Bar Night

Well it's finally here! Episode 2 of Mean Mug + Slim. I had to squeeze this one out because of lack of free time but I'm glad I could finally finish it off. I think with each episode I am becoming a little more aware of my capabilities. I think my next episode is going to explore more experimental shots and try to really up the cinematography of these short animations. I hope you enjoy.

Bike Lanes

Casey Neistat has a lot of interesting video work on his page. This is one of the more hilarious entries as of late. I don't want to spoil the ending so just watch and enjoy.


This is a fantastic documentary from ALCHEMYcreative showing how powerful and compelling stories from ordinary people can be. I think that is what makes this piece so relate-able. As for production, I love the style they shot the interviews in, great quality and highly engaging. I also have to give a shout out to the music. Adding "Home" by Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros to anything really gives an emotional K.O. punch.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Metronomy - The Bay

Beaches, babes, sun, sand...just a few things that make up the tropical paradise that is the setting for Metronomy's new music video by the David Wilson Creative group. I must say I love their creativity when it comes to shots and their use of overlapping shots is also intriguing. Rock on.


A wonderful story of Virginia's 100th birthday. Randy Chia really hits the mark with a touching story about family and friends. His shots really lock in on key moments and I think everyone could benefit from this piece.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Destruction Dave

If there is one thing I know it is that you have to take time to enjoy the little things. This video is definitely one of them. The machine gun wielding lunatic is my good buddy David Ayling. Check out some of his own personal work here.

Early Innings

Simply a beautiful documentary. It just goes to show that one does not have to have a major league team to have a major league documentary (one of my cornier lines). But corniness aside this is a well executed story created by David Targan with solid cinematography and editing by Rod Blackhurst.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Bare Bones Films vol. 3

I tried to find out a little bit more about Bare Bones but their website is as abstract as their show reel. There is some truly inspiring, abstract, and inspirational work among this piece (check out the video one vimeo for links directly to particular artists.) Some of my favorites include Ruff Mercy for the quirky and extremely blunt text animation, Hayley Morris for her abstract and mind bending video, Dave Prosser for his unique style and animation, and James Wignall. However, my favorite is most definitely Dave Prosser. His animations were truly unique and made me laugh.


At first I liked this video simply for its premise.  A fun idea just documenting water in all its many fun forms.  Then I found out it was shot entirely on Go Pro hd 720p 60fps to 24fps.  That took my excitement to a whole new level...I need to start using my Go Pro more!! Thank you Vitúc!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

On The Road Again

It's always difficult to post, let alone work on personal stuff from the road. I wanted to push out my second episode of Mean Mug + Slim before this week but I just couldn't manage it. For now all I can give is a still frame.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Don Hudson

Who can't relate to this? I am going camping this weekend and this is just the picture to get me excited about it. Hopefully I will get a few good shots as well. Check out more from Don Hudson here.

Joseph Pierce

Written and directed by Joseph Pierce this short animation dives deep into the problems of a particular family. However, I think we can all relate on some level. As the film progresses we find out more and more about the vile underside that lies behind a beautiful picture. This is only emphasized by the crude but purposeful quality of the drawings. Brilliant idea and brilliantly executed.

Another example of Pierce's work. This one depicts a failing comedian as the audience turns on him. Pierce's ability to accentuate a moment with a quick shift in facial expressions really take his animations to another level.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Looks That Kill

I am really starting to be blown away by the amount of mind blowing animations people are coming out with these days. The blend between 2D and 3D is becoming almost impossible to tell with the naked eye. This little retro piece directed by Kevin Dart and Stéphane Coëdel is just another example.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Lisa Stang

I can't describe her work as anything but timeless. Check out more here.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

'New York In Motion' Documentary Trailer

I suggest all you aspiring motion graphics designers to take a look at this and continue to follow it because it sounds pretty interesting. This is just a trailer by Graham Elliott on the motion design industry. He took the time to interview 50 of the top players in the field so you need to take the time to watch this.

Battles - Ice Cream (Featuring Matias Aguayo)

This is a really fun music video from Battles for their song Ice Cream which is on their forthcoming album 'Glass Drop.' I love the quick cuts, at one point I actually thought I was about to seizure and that's always exciting. Check out their site here and get some more.


There are a lot of things I like about this animation from ChezEddy. The animation is fantastic, and you can really tell how much went into each shot because each shot is its own painting. I thought the textures really emphasized the whole style of the video. Also the music and mixture of 2D and 3D were well done.