Thursday, 29 July 2010

The Corkscrew, Rob Higgs

This is a short film where Rob Higgs describes himself and his intentions by his work. It focuses on his piece called The Corkscrew. The Corkscrew is a mechanical sculpture made of about 300 pieces which were found by Higgs and cast in bronze before assembled together. The Corkscrew emerges from a cabinet as well as opening a bottle of wine and pouring the first glass using its own power. Below I've posted a video which shows how it does all of this. I also like this quote i found from Rob Higgs,

"I would like my work to inspire people to consider the general pointlessness and excessiveness of the majority of man-made things in our world and to smile at our tireless pursuit of happiness through the invention of ingenious nonsense."

I like the idea of some huge mechanical operation used to do a task that everyone just takes for granted. Its just an over-the-top method of dealing with a simple task. The huge chain reaction of events is such a build up of suspense for something so simple. I like of a huge operation you just to go "All that for that" at the end. This is something I want to follow up and look into for my self initiated project this year.

The Nutcracker (Eden Project), Rob Higgs

The Nutcracker is a 10 meter high mechanical structure designed and made by Rob Higgs. He has taken an easy everyday task and come up with an extravagant mechanical solution. It is a fantastic structure made from scrapped objects Higgs found and assembled. The purpose of the machine is described next to the piece and says,

"A sledgehammer to crack a nut"

This is the over the top nature of the piece. All that mechanism and all that time just to crack a nut but apparently it is a demonstration of over-processing plants. This isn't the part I like though, that is the huge chain reaction of evens to end with something so insignificant. I like this idea and I'm going to look into it as well as chain reactions for my Self Initiated Project.

Wednesday, 28 July 2010

JDO Competition

These were my entries into the JDO branding competition. The brief was to just use the lettering in the typeface provided to create either a moving or series of stills that can be used in a poster campaign. I wanted to use bright colours to emphasis the letters so they would stand out on a display somewhere. I was unsure whether to use full colour reflections or darker versions so I sent of both versions. I created a curvy almost liquid type surface for them to be stood on to deform the reflections and create more interest in the composition. Unfortunatly i found out this morning that I was un succesful in reaching the finals but I thought I would put them up here because I am still quite happy with them.

Buried Trailer

This is the new trailer for a film called Buried. Now I don't really put trailers on my blog but this one is a little different to the ones you usually see out there. I really like the way it has been made with a series of animated lines and reminds me a lot of the kinetic type stuff we did last year. This could quite easily be made into a title sequence as proven by putting the reviews with the images used. I also like the soundtrack to the piece as it is building to a big finish a lot like the animation itself.

Now the film doesn't sound that great. A man stuck in a coffin, with a phone, with RECEPTION? hmmm ok. So are we just going to be watching a guy in a box making a load of phone calls trying to get out? We will have to see but this makes me think. Have they gone through all this to make an interesting trailer because of a bad plot or a lot of people are thinking along the same lines and are trying to build some hype? Maybe I'm being harsh but we will have to see.

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

The Mysterious Explorations of Jasper Morello

If I haven't lent this to you already and you have half an hour spare watch this. I've posted the blurb underneath as it can tell you more than i can about it but all I can say is that it is very well done and worthy of winning the BAFTA. It is a great story well written and well produced and will keep you interested. Even though it is not mentioned in the blurb, I do believe there were some Lotte Reiniger influences (such as The Adventures of Prince Achmed). Enjoy!

The Mysterious Explorations of Jasper Morello Blurb:

Nominated for an Oscar and for a BAFTA award, Jasper Morello is a short feature made in a unique style of silhouette animation developed by director Anthony Lucas and inspired by the work of authors Edgar Alan Poe and Jules Verne. In the frontier city of Carpathia, Jasper Morello discovers that his former adversary Doctor Claude Belgon has returned from the grave. When Claude reveals that he knows the location of the ancient city of Alto Mea where the secrets of life have been discovered, Jasper cannot resist the temptation to bring his own dead wife Amelia back. But they are captured by Armand Forgette, leader of the radical Horizontalist anti-technology movement, who is determined to reanimate his terrorist father Vasco. As lightning energises the arcane machineries of life in the floating castle of Alto Mea, Jasper must choose between having his beloved restored or seeing the government of Gothia destroyed. Set in a world of iron dirigibles and steam powered computers, this gothic horror mystery tells the story of Jasper Morello, a disgraced aerial navigator who flees his Plague-ridden home on a desperate voyage to redeem himself.

Also winner of the Grand Prix award at the Annecy Animation Festival, Jasper has also won the top honours at the Canadian Film Centre's Worldwide Short Film Festival, Best Animation at Flickerfest 2005, Best Animation at the Sydney Film Festival Dendy awards and Best Animation at Toronto worldwide shorts.

The Lady and The Reaper, Kandor Moon

This is fantastic this piece of 3D. I think it is just as good as anything you would see from Pixar or any other large organisation. Kandor Moon produced this Oscar nominated short in 2009. It was directed Javier Recio Gracia and shows the story of an old women who wants to join her husband in the afterlife and is stuck between the 2 worlds because of and fight between doctor and the reaper.

It actually made me laugh out loud, it is fantastic! My favourite piece I've seen all year! Go onto Youtube, click on HD verson and watch it full screen, its that good.

Nuit Blanche, Spy Films

In this piece like the typical start of the city and the way it panned down to street level before entering into this slow motion dream state. The way it was shot reminds me a lot of the slow motion footage from Watchmen. The camera positions for the falling glass and the walking through the window are in interesting places which ensure there is a lot for the audience to take look at and take in. If you took still images from these camera angles they would be beautiful in themselves and that really appeals to me. Having frames that could be stand alone pieces (like below) really shows the quality of the footage / animation you have got / produced. And yes... unless you have not guessed I am a fan of Noir.

Making of Nuit Blanche, Spy Films

Make sure you also watch this, it's great!

The Cags, Alexei Petrov

I found this piece a while ago but it didn't have sound. Now I have found a version with sound I'll share it with you. I found piece about Cogs around the time the mini advert came out where the pens were chasing each other around the drawing board. This draws a lot of the same similarities (no pun intended) to the mini add but is more mature in the story it is telling. I like the relationship between the 2 cogs and the way the the 3D design is so well done that you can just concentrate on the story itself. The camera angles used are very well thought out and I especially like the one at 2:09 which is inside the clock but the 2 cogs are visible in the background.

War on Tetris animation

I put this up because i just love this piece I think its ace! The flash animation is done very well and even though I thought is was annoying at first the voices doing the sounds were very annoying I've grown to like them and think they lend themselves to the animation.

Some More Calero Stuff...

These are a couple more pieces I found by Dennis Calero. The top 3 pieces are Marvel Noir Cover varients that Calero has produced. The piece beneath that is from the Stephen King Series called Dark Tower and the bottom is a piece that can be bought as a separate poster and I think it could be one of his most striking pieces yet. I love the subtlety of the green iris and the way the jacket belt balances out the whole image.

Alternative Wolverine Covers, Dennis Calero

After buying a "Wolverine Noir" graphic novel while in New York i discovered a cover artist called Dennis Calero. He created some Sin City / Frank Miller type covers and variants for the Novel I bought. Some we published in the back of the novel and some I found on the Marvel site. Anyone who knows me knows how much I love work like this so I had to put some up here.

As for the novels themselves written and edited by Stuart Moore, I like them. They're different to anything Marvel I've read or seen before. It's a refreshing take on the X-men franchise even if it is done in a retro style typical of Frank Miller and Will Eisner.