Thursday, February 28, 2013

The Game Over Tinies

Loving the dark humor of this video game themed alphabet series from Brentalfloss.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

José Guizar - Windows of New York

Happy to have found this wonderful illustrated series, Windows of New York, from New York designer José Guizar.  I love how simple the theme and overall execution is.  Clean design and a soft color palette make for a truly lovely collection.  In such an overly stimulating city as New York, it's nice to see that some artists can still look up and find inspiration in the simple things. I was so inspired by this work that I actually contacted Jose in hopes that he would let me make an animation of his artwork.  I feel that the style lends itself so perfectly to animation.  Hopefully he responds positively because I would love to branch out and work more collaboratively with accomplished designers and artists.  Until then, you'll just have to look at the wonderful work yourself.

Cast Software

Really enjoyed this animation from I Love Dust and WEVIE. I Love Dust supplied the amazing graphics and animated icons while WEVIE supplied the musical score and sound design to put it all together. All in all a really solid piece and I especially love the analogous color palette used at the second half of the video. I need to work more with that kind of color scheme.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Husbands - "Dream"

Simple idea + amazing design + awesome music = Husbands' new music video for their song Dream. Video by Cauboyz.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Russell Cobb

Loving the color and surreal style of Russell Cobb's artwork. His latest series involves painting on antique books. I guess if you can't judge a book by its cover, you can at least paint all over it.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

To This Day

To This Day has just published the full piece. I am proud to have been apart of the project, if even just for a few moments.

To This Day Project is a project based on a spoken word poem written by Shane Koyczan ( called “To This Day”, to further explore the profound and lasting impact that bullying can have on an individual. Schools and families are in desperate need of proper tools to confront this problem. We can give them a starting point... A message that will have a far reaching and long lasting effect in confronting bullying. Animators and motion artists brought their unique styles to 20 second segments that will thread into one fluid voice. This collaborative volunteer effort will demonstrate what a community of caring individuals are capable of when they come together.

Monday, February 18, 2013

MeanMug Loves Guns Episode 5

Yes, it's finally here. Another record breaking episode of MeanMug Loves Guns. This one has yet again pushed the limits of time, now reaching the 2 minute mark exactly. As if that wasn't enough, this episode also pays tribute to one of my favorite movies of all time, Terminator 2: Judgement Day.

Now let's talk a little bit about how I came about this episode. For those of you that follow me, you may remember that my goal is to create 10 episodes in this particular series. I have all the guns picked out already, but aside from that, nothing is pre-planned. So when it's time to start making a new episode, I take a look at my list of guns, and I see what jumps out at me. For the big "mid season" episode I knew I would have to do something fairly epic, and what's a cartoon series about guns without a shotgun? The decision was clear, but there are so many different types of shotguns out there that the possibilities are endless. Do I want a sawed off shotgun? Pump action? Double Barrel? Then it hit me. It hit me like a shotgun blast of rock salt to the chest. Terminator 2 has one of the most iconic shotguns around - the Winchester Model 1887 with sawn-off stock, barrel, and cutaway trigger guard with standard lever loop, known as the "Rosebox Shotgun" (this information came courtesy of Wikipedia. I found out while doing research for this episode that you can find detailed information about the guns of pretty much any film). Not only is it sweet seeing Arnold cock this bad boy with one hand while driving his Harley, but the rose box reveal during The Galleria Scene from Terminator 2 has always been one of my favorite moments in movie history. So why not try and recreate it? Another goal of mine throughout this series has been to work on varying the angles I use in my cartoons to have a more cinematic feel, and nothing gives me better practice than literally building shots based off a movie. Many shots are exact recreations; however, the scene is not shot for shot because that wouldn't be adding anything new. I don't want to give too much away so I'll let you experience the rest on your own. Enjoy and keep an eye out for the next episode.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Photo of the Moment - .civililationscape.

Via Flickr:
Zenza Bronica ETRs
Zenzanon 75mm f2.8
Fuji Provia 400
printed 10x15cm
©Francesco Baldi

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Star Trek's JJ Abrams and Valve's Gabe Newell D.I.C.E. SUMMIT 2013

I love this for so so many reasons. Not only are two amazing storytellers from two different genres talking candidly about their craft, but there is also the possibility of JJ Abrams and Gabe Newell working on a movie or videogame together. I love the way Gabe and JJ go back and forth and point out the flaws and drawbacks to the other's medium, be it videogames or film. Definitely worth the watch.

Monday, February 11, 2013

2013 Short of the Week Awards

Short of the Week has released their 2013 winners in the category of Animation. I found all of the winner's films intriguing and innovative. I especially loved that 2 winners were done in 2D. It's great to see artists pushing the medium and creating some truly touching works of art.

 The Eagleman Stag by Mikey Please

 I'm Fine Thanks by Eamonn O Neill

 will by Eusong Lee

Face Blend

Even though it's just a flash test from Stephen McNally, I still really enjoy getting to see other animators' process and work in various stages. It's a great way to learn and get inspired.

To This Day Segment 21

Not long ago I stumbled across the To This Day Project. A spoken word poem written by Shane Koyczan on the topic of school bullying was to be split into 20 second segments and given to various animators. It was then up to them to create something meaningful that would be shown at different schools around the country. I knew I wanted to be apart of something so powerful and collaborative, so I signed up immediately. I was given Segment 21, which I soon found out was the second to last segment of the poem. I recently finished my animation and you can view it below. I went in a bit different direction than my initial storyboards (mostly in style choices), but for the most part I held close to what I envisioned. I wanted to do something a bit different for me stylistically and tried to use this opportunity as a way of experimenting with a few new things. I will be sure to post the full video when it comes out so keep your eyes peeled.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Photoshop Friday

Had a little fun today 'shopping my colleague fighting a fierce dragon. The background art I found online. I simply took out the original wizard and replaced him with my friend.

Jean Jullien

Some wonderful illustrations from Jean Jullien about the state of affairs in today's technology obsessed world.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

MeanMug Loves Guns Episode 5 Update #4

Run, Slim, Run. I literally feel just like him every time I'm trying to complete an episode. In the spirit of trying to keep people updated during the long production times of these episodes, I decided to upload the run cycle I worked on for the episode. I'm going to be completely honest in the fact that I haven't done too many run cycles in my day. I've done a fair amount of walking, but not a lot of running. Let me tell you, it's a different beast my friend. The principals are the same, it's just that running has a few more keyframes to it than walking does. There's more bounce and snap as well. I used the image below as a quick reference while animating and it helped out a lot. Keep your eyes peeled for more updates, I promise the episode is coming.

Sebas & Clim: TI Sparkle

Sebas & Clim were recently asked by The Brand Shop to translate conceptually the idea of their client. The brief was to make 4 short animations to communicate 4 different strong points of Sparkle, a telecom italia devision, in a really emotional way without beeing tough and dull. They wanted something which wouldn't be seen in the telecommunication's internal business world.

That was their task and I think Sebas & Clim crushed this one out of the park. I know from experience that it can be really, really difficult to explain different business ideas in a new and unique way without losing your audience or becoming too ambiguous. These animations do such a simple job of exploring ideas about clients and communication without once defining the client or diving too deep into the weeds. The result is a fun and emotional piece that I believe someone of any age or education could understand and enjoy. I would really like to explore this abstract style of communication in my own work to come. The difficulty in pulling something like this off is having a client who is willing to go the distance, take a risk, and not cram too much content into their message.

The Academy

Some truly inspiring work from The Academy. Just their name alone denotes the serious work that they're putting out, and you can tell how loved their work is because 2 of the 3 following animations are Vimeo Staff Picks. The first piece is called Hammer & Hand. I really love the ambiguity of the entire piece as well as all of their shots. Their compositions and attention to detail make this piece seem so grandiose. The second piece is a short film titled, When I Grow Up. This piece truly captures the imagination and splendor of a child's imagination in every one of it's vignetted scenes. Ironic how it actually makes me wish I was a kid again. If that wasn't enough to wet your whistle we have World of Motion. I love how, much like the title, this piece never stops moving. Each scene seems to fluidly transition into the next, and I particularly love how they used a grouping of trees to pull this off at one point. Definitely a group to keep your eye on.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Working Still from MeanMug Loves Guns Episode 5

If you really know your movies, you can tell where I took this shot from. Otherwise you'll just have to wait to find out.