Don't Hug Me I'm Scared

THIS IS IT are a collective of illustrators, animators, artists and designers based in London. Although each artist works individually and in a variety of different ways, collectively THIS IS IT aim to create simple, direct pieces with one clear voice.

THIS IS IT are Andy Baker, Laura Bird, Rose Blake, Thomas Bolwell, Daniel Britt, Hugo Donkin, Chan An Gee, Michael Knight, Nicos Livesey, Tom McCaughan, Azusa Nakagawa, Joseph Pelling and Becky Sloan.

'Don't Hug Me I'm Scared' is the collectives latest film. Directed by Becky Sloan and Joseph Pelling. It's brilliant, funny and terrifying!

Romain Segaud for Jean-Paul Gaultier

French director Romain Segaud strings together a high-energy stream of animated icons for this opening sequence commissioned for Jean-Paul Gaultier’s new website.

Kia Picanto Nail Art Animation

Kia have recently released the “World’s First Nail Art Animation” film for their all new Picanto. The making of the advert used 1,200 bottles of nail polish & took over 25 days (& nights) to make with each of the 900 nails requiring 2 hours to paint.

The Mountain Goats - Estate Sale Signs

Brooklyn animation studio Awesome and Modest created this new music video for The Mountain Goats track, 'Estate Sale Sign'. In the video, two shape-shifting beasts wage a war over a snow globe - makes sense!?!

The First Speeding Ticket By Ross Klettke

'The First Speeding Ticket' is a nice short film from animator Ross Klettke. You can read a detailed making-of on Ross' blog here: www.distractionlab.com

Weareflink For Skoda

Weareflink crafted this CG paper world for Skoda in 'Curriculum Vitae'.

Björk - Crystalline

Director Michel Gondry has teamed up with Björk once again to create their eighth music video together for 'Crystalline', the first single off Björk's forthcoming album, Biophilia, which gets released September 27th.

Gondry gave some insight into the making of the video:

"We shot it frame by frame, and we shot it by recranking the camera and re-exposing the film many times. I decided for this that the shower of meteorite would hit the ground and produce a sound... The idea that a beam of light can have the impact to make these things move is something that intrigued me. Later on, they create some ripples-like rain. At the third verse, they create bubbles in which the metallic objects appear. All of those are the result of multiple conversations with [Björk] that were going in many directions."

One Past Two

'One Past Two' is Aimee de Jongh's 2011 graduation film from the Willem de Kooning Academy, Rotterdam, Netherlands.

Heavy Metal



Robert Rodriguez is looking to bring 'Heavy Metal' back to the big screen.

The filmmaker announced at Comic-Con that he had acquired the film rights to the long-running and iconic sci-fi and fantasy comics magazine and was developing a new animated feature film.

The magazine, which debuted in the United States in 1977, brought to America work by European artists such as Moebius, Alexandro Jodorosky and Enki Bilal, as well as featuring homegrown talents like Bernie Wrightson and Richard Corben. The magazine was based on the French comics magazine 'Metal Hurlant', and was adapted into an adult-oriented animated feature film in 1981. A second animated feature based on the magazine, 'Heavy Metal 2000', was released in 2000. I quite like the 1981 movie, but the second effort in 2000 was pretty poor. I hope Rodriguez does the comic justice.

Young Intro

Young is a Manchester-based creative agency set up by founding partners Geth and Pete in June 2009. They create brand idents, print, motion graphics, illustration and animation. They've worked for some of my favourite places in Manchester including the Cornerhouse and the Royal Exchange Theatre.

"Young is playful, energetic and inquisitive - approaching new projects and clients with an open mind. We have kept our agency deliberately small, allowing flexibility for us to collaborate with various highly talented creatives on the right project."

PantoGraph For Google Adwords

The latest collaboration between Google and PantoGraph, the Japanese stop-motion studio, focuses on Adwords. Here is the ad Pantograph created for Google Offers: Google Offers

The Last Airbender: Legend of Korra



'The Last Airbender: Legend of Korra' is a spin-off of 'Avatar: The Last Airbender' and is expected to air on Nickelodeon in mid-2012. The series is currently under production, and is expected to run for 2 seasons, a total of 26 episodes.

When I first heard there was going to be an Avatar spin-off series I was a little disappointed that the creative team behind the original weren't putting their talents to something completely fresh. However, having seen the teaser and a good number of stills my concerns have been put to rest. I'm sure there will be plenty of what made the original series so good, with the occasional familiar face cropping up from time to time, but the new series will take place 70 years after the end of the 'Avatar: The Last Airbender' story arc, in a far more modern setting, which I imagine will help to give Korra’s story a very different feel from Aang’s.

Ana Teaser Trailer

Check out this slick trailer for 'Ana', a 3D CG feature directed by Carlos Carrera currently being produced in Mexico. The production company Lo Coloco Films has a website for the project here: Lo Coloco Films

The Pirates! Teaser Poster



Aardman Animation and Sony have released a new poster for the upcoming 3D stop-motion film 'The Pirates! Band Of Misfits,' also titled 'The Pirates! In An Adventure With Scientists.' The film is set to hit cinema screens on March 28th, 2012 in the UK, followed by the USA release on March 30th, 2012 as the poster says. Watch the teaser trailer here: Pirates! Trailer

Young Galaxy - Blown Minded

'Blown Minded' is from the album 'Shapeshifting' by Young Galaxy, on Paper Bag Records. This wonderful MV was created by filmmaker Carine Khalifé. You can read a lot about the animation process she used here: YouTube

Vésuves

I wasn't going to post any more of this year’s graduation shorts from Gobelins, but I just stumbled across 'Vésuves' and it's too good not to give it a mention.

A History Of Title Sequences

'A History Of Title Sequences' was created by Jurjen Versteeg as part of his graduation dissertation on title design. Designed as a possible title sequence for a fictitious documentary, the film shows a history of the title sequence in a nutshell. The names of the most influential title designers are mentioned, all of whom have had a big influence on the development and history of title design. Each designer's name refers to the revolutionary titles they designed, how many of the films referenced do you recognise?

~ Georges Méliès - Un Voyage Dans La Lune
~ Saul Bass - Psycho
~ Maurice Binder - Dr. No
~ Stephen Frankfurt - To Kill A Mockingbird
~ Pablo Ferro - Dr. Strangelove
~ Richard Greenberg - Alien
~ Kyle Cooper - Se7en
~ Danny Yount - Kiss Kiss Bang Bang / Sherlock Holmes

Reinvent The Toilet

Another tongue in cheek charity infographic, this time for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Find out why we need a toilet revolution and find new ways to turn crap into valuable stuff, like fuel, fertilizer, and fresh water.

Sexy Fingers

Based on illustrations by Jean-Michel Tixier and produced by Frenzy thru JWT Paris, this 'Sexy Fingers' clip for French charity AIDES is a bit rude!

Fulton Lights - Staring Out The Window

What a great music video! Created by London director Ninian Doff with zero budget by filming the crows of Clapham Common and then handling all the VFX animation work himself.

2NE1 - Hate You

Jean-François



'Jean-François' is a wonderful short film directed by Bruno Mangyoku and Tom Haugomat. The short received the 'Jean Luc Xiberras de la première oeuvre' award at Annecy Festival 2010.

Adventure Time And Lego



You may remember the incredible Studio Ghibli Lego creations by Iain Heath I posted about last month. Well he's also been working on some equally incredible Adventure Time models. Mathematical!



The Boy In The Bubble

Alan Rickman's narration makes this Burtonesque 3D feature look kind of watchable. I'm not sure about the quality of animation or it's obvious Tim Burton styling, but I'll reserve judgement until I've seen more.

Storyline:
Rupert, a ten year old boy, falls hopelessly in love for the first time. When it all goes terribly wrong, he wishes never to experience heartache again. Turning to a book of magic, he invokes a spell to shield him from emotion forever.

Animate Everthing At Protein Gallery



Animate Everything opens this Thursday 21th July and is the world’s first celebration of GIF art and digital creativity. Curated by Protein and Daniel David Freeman, the show also sees the launch of INSA‘s latest art piece spanning the entire side wall of 18 Hewett Street.

The show will also be presenting animations from over 20 artists including DDF, Jiro Bevis, Parra, Mimi Leung, Jim Stoten, Nous Vous Collective, Will Robson Scott and Trone Le Bone.

Head Gear Animation For Toronto Zoo

Toronto-based Head Gear Animation recently produced a series of spots for the Toronto Zoo. The three stop-motion spots feature the ever-popular penguins.





The Sleischers



Short wacky animated trash film by Tim Razumovsky & Eyal Oren, third year students at the Bezalel Academy of Arts & Design in Israel. 'The Sleischers' is an R-rated tribute to 70s trash films a la Rodriguez & Tarantino.

Tim Razumovsky:

“The film is a kind of short pilot episode which will hopefully become a series in the future. The main characters are a pair of twisted married assassins and the title 'The Sleischers' is actually their family name. 'The Sleischers' is a sort of a pun for the word “slashers” and a hint that both characters speak with heavy foreign accent and their origin remains unclear. The film is a marriage of various kinky B-Movies that we like. As for the plot, I’ve heard a couple of interesting theories about it – such as hidden religious or feminist messages in it.”

Buck For Umbro

The latest from the Buck studio, was created for sportswear apparel maker Umbro to promote their “Blackout” collection. It features New York Cosmos player Carlos Alberto Torres as narrator, telling the story of how the first day he arrived in the states to sign his contract with the soccer team.

RCA: 25 Years Of Animation DVD



Royal College Of Art: 25 Years of Animation

Another new DVD from the people at BAA (British Animation Awards.) This collection brings together 50 innovative films from the first 25 years of Animation at the Royal College of Art, plus an illustrated booklet, features work from RCA Animation alumni including Academy Award winner Suzie Templeton (Dog), Gaelle Denis (Fish Never Sleep), Max Hattler (Collision), Johnny Kelly (Procrastination), Michael Please (The Eagleman Stag) and David Prosser (Matter Fisher) amongst many more.

Buy your copy here: BAA Shop

The Found Collective For Vodaphone

More from the excellent London based Found Collective, who has been creating some truly excellent work lately. Check out the music video for the Wombats posted recently.

This brilliant video utilises animated projection mapping to show the evolution of Vodaphone mobile technology.

New TV Idents From MTV World Design

MTV’s World Design Studio in Milan releases the first four of six new TV idents. MTV World Design Studios collaborated with other artists and studios for each ident including The Mill, David Lobser/Blacklist, I Love Dust, and Mate Steinforth/Sehsucht Berlin...







Rimer London - Put Your Gun Away

Ewoudt Boonstra and Parra created a music video for 'Put Your Gun Away' by Rimer London featuring South African singer Cata Pirata.

"The video takes us through a world inspired by French synth-pop where Rimer London and Cata Pirata battle it out in a "carnival cut-out" by means of Parra's animated iconic characters."

I love Parra's illustrations and it's great to see them animated.

Zarafa

Due for release early next year in France, it might be some time before we get to see 'Zarafa' in the UK. This hand drawn feature is from filmmaker Remi Bezancon and animator Jean-Christophe Lie, who seem to have taken an inspirational cue from Michel Ocelot and 'Kirikou'. 'Zarafa' is “the story of a baby giraffe and the young boy who loves it”. Here’s the trailer (via Twitch):

Tooth Fairy Affair

Izabela Melamed has worked as an animator for the National Cartoon Animation Studio Sofia in Bulgaria, Anima Studios in Israel and Wild Brain in San Francisco, United States. She currently lives in her native Bulgaria and works as a freelance animator. 'Tooth Fairy Affair' is the first of her independent films to be posted on Vimeo.

London International Animation Festival 2011

The London International Animation Festival wanted to comission a trailer to celebrate their upcoming animation festival and the move to their new home, the Barbican. LIAF is the UK's largest animation festival, showcasing more than 250 films annually and screening over ten days and nights at Central London cinemas from the 26th of August to the 4th of September. To find out more about the festival please visit www.liaf.org.uk.

This year's theme is cut-out animation, which inspired the look of this trailer, made with ink on acetate and tracing paper on a multiplane. Directed, designed and animated by Daniela Negrin Ochoa.

Dorothy Of OZ



'Dorothy of OZ' is an upcoming computer-animated film based on the book by Roger Stanton Baum. The film is scheduled for a U.S. theatrical release in August 2012, with a UK release planned soon after.

The film features an all-star cast of actors providing the voices. Sadly as with many Hollywood animated features the voice casting seems to have been determined by which celebrity names you can attach to a project as opposed to any actual talent somebody might be able to offer. Dorothy Gale is voiced by Lea Michele (of GLEE fame), the Scarecrow is voiced by Dan Aykroyd (lets hope he does a better job than his efforts in Yogi Bear), Tin Man voiced by Kelsey Grammer and Cowardly Lion by James Belushi.

I've attached a video of Patrick Stewart talking about his role as Tugg...


Bill Plympton Restoring Winsor McCay's The Flying House



Bill Plympton has recently been raising funds through Kickstarter to restore and release Winsor McCay's classic 'The Flying House'. By the time the fund raising period closed almost double the initial $10,000 target had been pledged. The funding closed with a total of $19,760 raised for the project. This extra cash will hopefully be put towards promoting the release of the film and generating additional features for the DVD release. Some of the biggest changes Bill is making to the film is colouring the film and removing the iconic McCay word balloons and replacing them with an audio track featuring the voices of Matthew Modine and Patricia Clarkson. Hopefully this additional funding will be sufficient to include a less altered, more true to the original version, still black and white with the word balloons left intact.

Visit the Kickstarter project page for more information. The restoration and other changes are well underway, I for one can't wait to see the finished result. I love the work of both Bill Plympton and Winsor McCay, so this should be fantastic when finished.

The Wombats - Techno Fan

The Found Collective were hired to create a music video for The Wombat's latest release 'Techno Fan'. They had received a signed-off edit of some live footage, which had been rejected by the record label. The Found Collective processed and stylised the footage, working with Memo Akten at Mega, Super, Awesome Visuals to create a custom open frameworks app that was used to process the rotoscoped edit. The final results are pretty spectacular, and certainly more visually pleasing than some standard live footage.

The Monster Of Nix Trailer

A creepy and slightly disturbing trailer for 'The Monster of Nix', a new half-hour animated short by Dutch director Rosto. He describes the short, which debuted in Annecy last month, as an “existentialist musical fairytale.” Tom Waits and Terry Gilliam are both pretty well cast to provide suitably scary voices.

More info at www.monsterofnix.com

Harrey Podder: Say The Magic Word

David Stodolny, an animator currently working for Dreamworks, posted this Harry Potter fan parody on YouTube a couple of days ago. Presumably to coincide with the release of the final Harry Potter film. Despite some pretty poor sound recording, the animation is pretty good and funny to boot.

Create By Dan MacKenzie

Dan MacKenzie, a recent graduate of Savannah College of Art and Design, recently released a trailer for his senior film, 'Create'. This trailer will be Create's only online presence for a while as Dan has submitted it to various film festivals. I look forward to seeing the film in full.

Visit Dan MacKenzie's website and blog for more information:

www.mackmation.com

www.mackmationblog.blogspot.com

Peony



China's original 3D animated film 'Peony' will be released at the end of 2011, probably 2012 before we get to see it in the UK. This film is made completely by the Chinese people, and it represents the highest level achieved by China's 3D animated films.

This movie is produced by Luoyang Jingrui Film and Animation Co., Ltd. in Henan, China. They have more than 200 high-tech animation experts in the company. Their technical skills and R & D strength in China is considered among the best.

'Peony' focuses on an inspirational message of "Peace, Justice and Anti-drugs." It tells a story about the king of flowers, "Peony," who has gone through many hardships, achieving final victory over evil, represented by the greedy "Poppy." "Peony" leads the beautiful flowers out of the Blooming Flowers Valley, bringing them to the humans.

The film is made entirely from its creation through to its production by the Chinese people themselves. Compared with some Hollywood films, which contain "Chinese elements", the movie 'Peony' has more abundant Chinese elements, and better reflects the characteristics of an authentic Chinese culture. 'Peony' will bring the vision, sounds and soul of Chinese culture on a journey to the people of the world.

Aardman's Pirates! Trailer

Two new trailers for the upcoming Aardman 3D stop-motion animation feature 'The Pirates! In An Adventure With Scientists' have been released online today, giving us a proper look of the studio’s first feature since 'Flushed Away'. What do you make of this first look at Aardman animation's latest, in which Hugh Grant plays a sea captain keen to beat arch rivals Jeremy Piven and Salma Hayek for the pirate of the year award?

Screen Novelties For Nike

Screen Novelties worked with Weiden + Kennedy to evoke the atmosphere of the legendary films of Ray Harryhausen for this Nike - 'The Minotaur of Atlanta' advert. Screen Novelties actually worked with Harryhausen in 2003, finally completing the 'Tortoise & The Hare' short started by Ray back in 1953.

Stefan Sagmeister & Brand New School For EDP

Stefan Sagmeister and Brand New School conjure a :60 tale of crimson utopia to intro Sagmeister’s new logo treatment for Portugese Energy company EDP.

BNS art director Christopher Palazzo: ”Bringing life-like behavior to the deceptively simple geometric system created by Sagmeister, Inc. was a fun challenge. The scope of this system is absolutely astounding. A graphic system this rich and smart can do anything, as shown in the final piece. Stefan and his team were an absolute dream to work with.”

Arthur Christmas Trailer

Aardman have released a second teaser trailer for their forthcoming CG feature film 'Arthur Christmas.' They've also launched the official website which is pretty cool in itself. Visit the website here: Arthur Christmas

New International Tintin Trailer

Pictoplasma Talks - Peter de Sève



Another edition in Pictoplasmas ongoing series of the best artist presentations here's a 12 minute edit of Peter de Sève's lecture at the Pictoplasma Conference 2010 in a nutshell:

Peter de Sève is famed for his illustration work and cover art to The New Yorker since 1993. He is also undoubtably one of the leading character designers in today’s animated-film industry, and has created unforgettable characters for block-busters such as 'The Hunchback of Notre Dame', 'Tarzan', 'Finding Nemo' or 'Robots'. Peter was the sole designer on 'Ice Age' and its sequels, yet his 'Scrat' clearly overshadows the entire cast and turned into a world-wide icon.

Kijkshock3 Show, DVD & Book

Kijkshock III Cover kopie.jpg

Kijkshock3 is duo Sjeng Schupp & Michiel Van Dijk’s newest animation and live music show.

Their short, wilful musical animation films (some abstract, others figurative) are characterized by whimsy and absurdism. The music weaves from classical to jazz and everything on either side. Sound and sight fit together perfectly. Schupp and Van Dijk themselves play in the five-member band that accompanies the films live on stage. Their own work is complemented by films and music of kindred film-makers and composers who were invited by the duo to make new works for Kijkshock3.

There is a DVD+book to accompany this third show, published by publisher De Buitenkant. To get an idea of what’s going on in the heads of the makers, the accompanying book gives a look behind the scenes, with stills, sketches and associative material. The music welds the films together to create a whole that can best be experienced by playing the dvd in its entirety, with the book at hand. There is also a seccond DVD+book to accompany the first show, Kijkshock1. Looks like there was never a Kijkshock2.

Les Chiens Isolés

'Les Chiens Isolés' is one more wonderful short from this years graduation shorts from Gobelins. Directed by Rémi Bastie, Nicolas Deghani, Jonathan Djob-Knondo, Paul Lacolley, Nicolas Pegon, Jérémy Pires, and Kevin Manach.

Fur

'Fur' is another great graduation short from Gobelins, June 2011. Directed by De François Barreau, Marion Delannoy, Claire Fauvel, Rachid Guendouze, Vincent Nghiem, Benoit Tranchet.

Sufjan Stevens - Get Real, Get Right

Singularity

Yongchan Kim, along with his friend Yongsub Song in The Mill NY's 3D department, have created this stunning piece, 'Singularity'.

Says Kim about the film, "We wanted to convey a feeling of contrast between human and machine. In order to make a well-organized storyline with a single object, we had to do a lot of testing with the camera layouts, length of shots and different lighting in each shot. After doing a lot of previz to finalize all camera work and animation, we also had to deal with lighting because we wanted it to have its own narrative as well."

Watch below below to see the fruits of their labor.


Who's Afraid Of Mr Greedy?

'Who's Afraid OF Mr Greedy?' is a fantastic graduation film from Gobelins, June 2011. Directed by Simon Boucachard, Jean Baptiste Cumont, Sylvain Fabre, Guillaume Fesquet, Adeline Grange, Maxime Mary and Julien Rossire.

From Up On Poppy Hill

As well as 'Arrietty' and the 'Porco Rosso' sequel Studio Ghibli also have 'From Up On Poppy Hill' on its way. Check out this trailer for the latest collaboration between Gorō Miyazaki (Tales from Earthsea), who directed it and his father, Hayao Miyazaki, who wrote the screenplay.

Inch-time - Floating World

From Frater Films, a lovely animated album promo to launch Mystery Plays Records' debut release, Inch-time's The Floating World.

Blinkink For The International Exchange

Eight months in the making, Joseph Mann's latest project is for charity, The International Exchange (T.I.E.) and features the ever present craft that Joseph puts into all of his work. A new website is on the way but for now, just enjoy these three minutes…

L'Entrepôt Short Film

'L’Entrepôt' is the latest short film from some very talented students at the French animation school ArtFX. Directed and animated by Guillaume Parra, Carole Chanal and Gaëtan Baldy.



Japanese Motion Graphic Creators 2011



Japanese Motion Graphic Creators 2011

Paperback: 254 pages
Publisher: BNN Inc (1 Jun 2011)
Language: Japanese/English
ISBN-10: 4861007747
ISBN-13: 978-4861007743

Projection mapping techniques, datamosh, Ustream, Animation, 3D, AR, etc... This book shows you the latest projects from 100 Japanese motion graphic creators. Also included is a DVD with 50 minutes of footage. This is the 6th volume in the Japanese Motion Graphic Creators yearbook series. The first volume was released back in 2006. I recommend reading some of these earlier volumes too, they're all excellent.

Moon Man



Cartoon Saloon, the studio behind 'The Secret of Kells,' is starting work on a new hand-drawn animated feature based on the book 'Moon Man' by Tomi Ungerer. I love Ungerers style of illustration and Cartoon Saloon seems like the perfect match to bring his illustrations to life. Also take a look at the trailer for ‘Song Of The Sea,’ another forthcoming feature from Cartoon Saloon.

Angel Vitamina Trailer

'Angel Vitamina' is a personal project from Argentinean animator Diego De Rose and a small team of independent animators. This is the second trailer released for this work in progress, the first was more of a teaser trailer whilst this newer one reveals a bit more about the plot. Check out Diego's production blog and website.

Studio Ghibli Arrietty English Trailer

I posted the Japanese trailer a few months back, but here is the English trailer for the forthcoming Studio Ghibli feature 'Arrietty.' Disney’s English dub will feature Carol Burnett, Amy Poehler, Will Arnett and Bridget Mendler as Arrietty.