Jan Svankmajer - Dimensions of Dialogue / Between Film and Fine Art Book



Jan Svankmajer - Dimensions Of Dialogue / Between Film And Fine Art

Paperback: 508 pages
Publisher: Artefakt/Arbor Vitae (Aug 2013)
Language: English
ISBN: 9788074670169
Price: £55.00 (appox.)

'Dimensions of Dialogue' celebrates the world-renowned Czech filmmaker Jan Svankmajer (born 1934), responsible for some of the most memorable and unique animated films ever realised, and who has strongly influenced filmmakers like Tim Burton and The Brothers Quay.

This publication presents Svankmajer not only as a filmmaker but also as an outstanding fine artist, experimenter, poet and a militant surrealist. Through explorative and informative essays, scholars Bertrand Schmitt and Frantiek Dryje illuminate the various aspects of his output, including puppet theatre, Mannerism, Surrealism and his many collaborations with his wife, Eva Svankmajerová (1940–2005), a surrealist painter, filmmaker and ceramicist. This substantial monograph, named after his 1982 film (noted for its brilliant display of “claymation”) includes a number of reproductions of Svankmajer's art work, film stills, photographs from plays and a selection of documentary images from the life of this internationally respected and multitalented artist.



Kapie Eipak: Downtown

Kapie Eipak is studying animation at Nayang Technological University in Singapore. His latest short, titled 'Downtown' and set to the song of the same name by Petula Clark, sees a figure sporting a rather drastic bowl haircut escape the crowded city streets.
 
We'll certainly be keeping an eye out for Kapie's next project.


Marine Duchet: Cyclope Trailer

Keep your eye out for Octopus Collectives' Marine Duchet's animated short 'Cyclope', appearing online early in the new year. In the meantime enjoy this short teaser trailer...


Gritty Realism Productions: Eadweard Muybridge

Gritty Realism Productions are developing the sand-animation technique into new areas including animated feature films, interactive media and fractal programmes, as well as using sand-animation as an educational tool through their partner organisation Gritty Films Ltd.

Gritty Realism is helmed by animator Gerald Conn, who specialises in sand-on-glass animation and won the 1998 BAFTA Cymru best animation for his film 'The Comet's Tale.' Still honing his skills in this technique Gerald Conn and Gritty Realism are currently developing a feature project as an international co-production alongside a number of other film projects that tackle a wide range of topics.

Recently they released this animated film created by Gerald Conn during a residency in the Children's Creativity Museum in San Francisco. The shorts focus is Eadweard Muybridge, a photographer known for his pioneering work in photographic studies of motion, and early work in motion-picture projection.


Powerpuff Girls Dance Pantsed Preview



After a nigh on 10 year hiatus, the 'Powerpuff Girls' are returning to our screens in a brand new special titled 'Dance Pantsed'! Due to debut in the US on Cartoon Network, January 20th at 7:30pm.

With the shows creator, Craig McCracken, currently tied up with his new Disney show 'Wander Over Yonder,' directorial duties have been handed over to Dave Smith, a former writer and storyboard artist from the original 'Powerpuff Girls' series.

All of the original series' voice actors will be reprising their roles, with Ringo Starr joining the cast as Fibonacci Sequins, "Townsville’s most flamboyant mathematician."

Synopsis:

"In 'Dance Pantsed', why is Mojo Jojo kidnapping a mathematician, an opera singer and a badger? To steal Chemical X, of course, and to finally take over Townsville. But when the Powerpuff Girls thwart his plan, he invents an evil video game called “Dance Pants R-EVILution” to control their minds and bodies to fulfil his evil plot! The Professor must visit his dark dancing past to save his girls so they can save all of Townsville!"


Federico Gutiérrez: Arcadia

Federico Gutiérrez animated 'Arcadia', hand-drawn with coloured with markers and composited in After Effects, in just four weeks!

Made with the support of the Digital Culture Center in Mexico City, Federico describes 'Arcadia' as "the playful utopia of eternal childhood."


Mascha Halberstad: Goodbye Mister De Vries

Directed by Mascha Halberstad, and animated with the help of Huub Kistermaker, 'Goodbye Mister De Vries' sees a frail nonagenarian receive a mysterious parcel containing his old Frisian skates! He heads out on a cold winters day for one last skate...


Kayoko Nagashima: PICO

Kayoko Nagashima seasonal animated short 'PICO' is incredibly sweet and gorgeously animated...


BUCK: Santa's New Sleigh

BUCK teamed up with RPA and Honda to craft a cheery animated tale about Santa trading in his knackered old sleigh for a brand spanking new one complete with a rear-view camera, lane departure warning system, airbags and forward collision warning system!

It was about time Santa upgraded the old sleigh, after hundreds of years whizzing around the globe delivering toy to children, it had nearly 75 billion miles on the clock!

We Think Things: We Wish Things

We Think Things (a design collective consisting of Pascal Monaco & Felix Meyer) have utalised the concept behind Rex Whistler's illustrated 'upside down face' optical illusions, in the creation of their animated festive greeting titled 'We Wish Things.'

As the animated wheel rotates we see a rather grumpy looking Father Christmas delivering presents transform into a happy child receiving the gifts the following morning... It's a rather clever application of a classic optical trick, we love it!


Del Toro X Disney Capsule Collection



We spotted the 'Goofy' reworking of Del Toro's classic Alto Chukka sneakers online last week, and deemed them far too ugly to be worth mentioning here. However as the official release date via the Del Toro online store draws near more of the capsule collection has been unveiled.

Whilst the 'Goofy' Chukka's, composed in an acrid blue and green colour-palette, are nothing more than repulsive, some of the other sneakers and slips-ons on offer are actually pretty slick. The classic black and white Mickey Mouse motif works well alongside Del Toro’s signature red heel tab, and the Pinocchio slip-ons cleverly apply a single embroidered image across the pair of shoes.


Screen Novelties: A Krampus Christmas

For their Christmas special stop-motion maestros Screen Novelties celebrate the Krampus, a beast-like folklore creature thought to punish children during the Yuletide season.

"Be cool this Christmas...or else!"

Norah Jones: On This Ice

The seasonal animation is coming think and fast as Christmas day approaches!

'On Thin Ice', a sweet stop motion short animated by Norah Jones, sees a seasoned workshop elf despair at the gifts children want this year... It's all electronic gadgets!

He sets about with his woodwork tools on one final project...

Blue Zoo: Xmas 2013

Ben Steer, at London-based animation studio Blue Zoo, directed this enchanting CG seasonal greeting!

Hover Studio & Animade: Hover Flakes

Hover Studio collaborated with their Sister company Animade on this animated festive greeting and free App game titled 'Hover Flakes'! Unwrap your free gift at www.hoverflakes.com


The Simpsons X Moleskine



Moleskine's latest limited-edition notebook series features 'The Simpsons' in celebration of the 25th anniversary of the longest-running scripted TV show!

The collection includes four black & simpsons-yellow pads each featuring a different debossed illustration on the cover, here we've pictured the larger size featuring Homer, and the pocket size featuring Bart. Each notebook also boasts end papers illustrated with views of Springfield, as well as a sheet of 'Simpsons' stickers! Intriguingly the cover belly-bands appear to have walk cycles printed on the reverse, perhaps these can be assembled into your very own 'Simpsons' zoetrope?!


Leah Shore: Happy Holidays

Leah Shore's 2012 'Holidays, I Don't Give A Fuck' was one of the more exciting animated festive greetings we posted on AR last year. Despite featuring a hand-made stop-motion felt-stripper and an ass rimming snowflake, she's topped it this year with a disgustingly bloated rabbit addicted to consuming MSG infused fruitcake!

We'd love to spend Christmas Day at Leah's house, she must have some pretty wild Christmas' to come up with this shit!

The Abe Chang And The Sea - White Rainbow

Returning to complete the 'RGB' trilogy, Masanobu Hiraoka has released his third animated music video in collaboration with musician Yoshiharu Abe and his solo project The Abe Chang And The Sea.

We've already enjoyed 'SUN SET SUN' from the 'R' EP and 'ONE AND THREE FOUR' from the 'B' EP, now we can finally enjoy 'White Rainbow' taken from the 'B' EP...

Simon Landrein: Michel Homm

Simon Landrein's animated short 'Michel Homm', tells the story of a saucy beach encounter (punctuated with bizarre metaphorical imagery like a fish and a wedge of cheese) that takes an unexpected karate-chopping turn!

Eoin Duffy: Snowflake

Eoin Duffy's animated seasonal greeting 'Snowflake', despite being so short, sure packs in a lot of charm and humour...


Jens & Anna: Tis The Season

The animated adaptation of Raymond Briggs' 'Father Christmas' has already asked what Father Christmas does with himself "the other 364 days of the year?" Never in a million years would we have guessed he liked dressing up in bizarre costumes and indulging in the occasional bondage session!

'Tis the Season' by directing/animation duo Jens & Anna explores the darker side of what Santa and his crew are up to during their time off...


Peter Millard: Boogodobiegodongo

Peter Millard has finally shared his indescribable RCA animated short 'Boogodobiegodongo' online! Keep your eyes peeled for a split-second cameo from Hulk Hogan, blink and you'll miss him.


Alameda - New Leaf

The animated music video for Alameda's new track 'New Leaf' was truly a labour of love for creative studio Legwork. The project took nearly two years to complete as they experienced several setbacks and explored a new animation technique, specifically rotoscoping over 3D animation. (We've posted a short behind-the-scenes video to offer some insight into this process.)
 
Legworks goal was to merge the hand-made quality of painting with the perfection of 3D camera movement and environments. I'm sure you'll agree their perseverance and dedication to this project shows through in it's innovative and thoroughly compelling aesthetic.


Leblon Delienne & Artoyz: Looney Tunes



The second collectable figurine collaboration between French sculptural and interior design workshop Leblon-Delienne and Artoyz Originals sees a collection of regular, psychedelic ("fancy") and DIY variants of several Looney Tunes characters.

Mixing the renowned sculpting talent from Leblon-Delienne and the design skills from Artoyz, Daffy Duck, Sylvester and of course Bugs Bunny come to life in vinyl. With regular colour varients sticking to the original character designs, a fancy one exploring poly-chromatic styles, and solid-colour blank vinyl to create your own designs!
 
All the collection is available direct though Artoyz online store here: Artoyz


Hyvää Joulua from Mummu

Last year, London-based animation studio, Mummu spoilt us with an animated extravaganza of the carol, 'The Twelve Days of Christmas'!

This year they've treated us to an animated tribute to Finnish Lapland, the home of Father Christmas! Rather pleasingly, despite being named after the Babylonian God of craftsmanship and technical skill, Mummu also translates as Granny in Finnish! So 'Hyvää Joulua from Mummu' loosely translates as 'Happy Christmas from Granny!'


Nino Christen: L'Île Noire Trailer

The stark monochromatic teaser trailer for Nino Christen's animated short L'Île Noire is exceptionally intriguing, we can't wait to see the full film!

"On an island, at the edge of the woods, a watchman and his bird live a miserable and isolated life. One day a deceptive chance came up to escape the boredom, but great danger lurks behind it."


Seigensha Flipbook: God of Bug Eater



We've posted before about the gorgeous flipbooks published by Seigensha Art Books, their Christmas flipbook from last year is especially impressive!

Their latest volume is called 'God of Bug Eater' and sees a small insect nibble away at the pages (each page is actually cut with a physical hole), before being consumed by the strange hill-like creature it helped shape!

"You and I will always be together. Be one with me, and we'll become a pretty-coloured forest."

Koji Yamamoto: Planet Problems 1

We're really smitten with this animated stop motion fragment by Rhode Island School of Design student, Koji Yamamoto. The piece features a wacky space creature, evocative of 'Button Moon', interrupted from his daily routine by a volcanic eruption.
 
The work is enticingly titled 'Planet Problems 1', hinting at the prospect of subsequent adventures. We certainly hope we're treated to more... This is fantastic!


Gal Shkedi: December 2013

Tel-Aviv based illustrator, director and animator Gal Shkedi has taken an unusual approach to his animated Christmas greeting this year. Last years was creepy, but this one damn near scared us to death...



Gal has also directed a seasonal episode of his grim serialised series, 'Death Corporation'. You can watch it (and the rest of the series) here: 'Death Corporation'

Bliink Xmas Ident 2013

We love this time of year, when all the animation studios and independent animators start to release their festive Christmas greetings and shorts. They're always unbridled self expressions of the individuals own style, humour a creativity without having to answer to a particular client or brief. The diversity and scope of talent in the field of animation never ceases to amaze us!

The animators at Bliink, a creative agency based in Brighton, have been busy beavering away like Santa's workshop elves to bring us this environmentally sound festive message...


The Line: Wallflowers

Following on from their self initiated project 'Everything I Can See From Here' and the sublime music video they created for Mat Zo & Porter Robinson, London based animation collective The Line are back with yet another superb character driven piece of animation.

'Wallflowers' celebrates and wonderfully observes the array of unusual characters your sure to have encountered at some point on a shit night out.


Devendra Banhart - Taurobolium

Animator Galen Pehrson takes musician Devendra Banhart on a psychotropic trip in his video for 'Taurobolium', conceived in the mondo tradition.

“Conceived in the tradition of Mondo – the 1960s sub-genre associated with exploitation, death and taboo – Mondo Taurobolium uses the eponymous track 'Taurobolium' from Banhart’s latest album 'Mala' as a backdrop. The experimental narrative takes dark and existential turns into the murky underbelly of Hollywood.”


Rourke Van Dal: Mickey Mouth



Vandalart Gallery, the primary source for collectable Urban Contemporary Art by UK artist and designer Rourke Van Dal, have released an edition of 10 spray painted stencil versions of Rourkes classic 'Mickey Mouth' image. The 2 colour sprayed stencil original is signed and numbered and priced at £175.

Impactist for Cartoon Network

Impactist's beautifully animated and wonderfully scored festive bumps for Cartoon Network are essential viewing for any animation or music enthusiast!

We're torn as to whether we love their visuals or music more... We could enjoy both indefinitely! For this reason we've also posted the unedited version of their electric-peppermint tinged track 'Wintertone,' and urge you to watch/listen to their entire back catalogue. You won't be disappointed!




Nicole Mueller: Kaleidoscope Cat

Nicole Mueller's colourful mixed-media rotoscoped animated loop of a stretching cat, titled 'Kaleidoscope Cat,' is hypnotically abstract and thoroughly enjoyable!

The piece has already been exhibited at Creative Paradox in Annapolis, MD and International Arts Movement in NYC.


Bob 2: Spray Pals

Bob 2 (aka Spray Gang) is back with more animated "giffiti!"

'Spray Pals' features a series of Bob 2's graffiti characters recreated as simple looping animated GIFs, there is also a wonderful pixelated nod to his fellow Sheffieldian graffiti artists!


Antek Walczak: New Transbohemian States



Brooklyn-based gallery Real Fine Arts is currently exhibiting a series of eight paintings by Antek Walczak titled 'New Transbohemian States." The square canvases are painted in bright block colours with 'state transition diagrams' created to resemble classic cartoon characters. Reading along the lines connecting the dots reveals laugh-out-loud self-parodying slogans like "I want to be a contemporary artist," "Work is much less important than attitude" and "I can reference art formally without worries, because my theoryqueen reading lists resolve problems of contextual history."


Cale Atkinson: Happy Holidays

Our first charming animated festive greeting of 2013 comes from Canadian animator Cale Atkinson...


The Bishops - Polygonn

Directed by Ben Aston and animated by Nick Black, this rotoscoped music video for The Bishops track 'Polygonn,' the first single taken off their new album 'All Lost Time', is well worth checking out.

Crafted with 2,500 individual hand-drawn illustrations of scratchy line doodles on a bright yellow background, you can almost imagine it was created as a flipbook on a pad of post-it notes! The band should seriously consider producing little promotional flipbook publications featuring excerpts from the video... We'd be first in line to buy them!
 
To stream and purchase the album check them out at The Bishops Bandcamp,  and for more from The Bishops check out their website... www.thebishopsband.com


Poemotion 2 Book



Poemotion 2

Hardback: 64 pages
Publisher: Lars Muller Publishers (Nov 2013)
Language: English
ISBN: 9783037783511
Price: £15.00

AR posted about the excellent 'Poemotion' book by Takahiro Kurashima back in February of 2012. Takahiro Kurashima has now teamed up with Swiss publishing house Lars Müller to produce a hardback edition of the original and 'Poemotion 2,' its full colour sequel!

"In this interactive book abstract patterns start to move as soon as the reader overlays them with the special film sheet enclosed: moiré effects create complex shapes, make circles start to spin, and set graphic patterns vibrating."


Young Galaxy - Hard To Tell

Visual artist Carine Khalife is back with her second painterly animated music video for Young Galaxy. You can watch their first music video collaboration 'Blown Minded' here. The new track is called 'Hard To Tell' and taken from Young Galaxy's fourth studio album, 'Ultramarine,' which is available now through Paper Bag Records.


Stanley Chow Olive Oyl Print



Illustrator, animator and art director Stanley Chow recently unveiled his latest series of gorgeously illustrated prints titled 'Damsels In Distress.' The series features iconic female characters drawn in Stan's own inimitable style. Our favourite in the series has to be 'Olive Oyl,' which is available as a high quality digital print in a variety of sizes ranging from A4 (priced £10.00) to A1 (priced £40.00.) You can purchase a print direct from Stan's online store here: www.stanleychow.bigcartel.com

Jose Miguel Méndez for The Loop

Jose Miguel Méndez animated this excellent stop motion spot for kids magazine, 'The Loop,' encouraging people to subscribe.

Jose also kindly contributed an illustration of Dolph, Kearney, Jimbo and Nelson, from his favourite childhood cartoon 'The Simpsons,' to the launch issue of the Animated Review 'zine. Which is available online here: Animated Review Shop, or through a selection of stockists across the UK.


Yule Log 2.0

Yule Log 2.0 is an excellent holiday-themed animated project conceived and curated by Daniel Savage, and built by Wondersauce. A selection of 53 different short films, created by 66 artists including animators, illustrators and creative coders, was devised as an updated, re-imagined, homage to the classic Yule Log TV program (1966.)

We've posted a small selection of our favourite Yule Log inspired loops, but the entire project can be viewed over on the Yule Log 2.0 website.


'Yule Log Of Love' by Greg Gunn


'Yule Jug' by James Curran


'Tio & Flames' by Laura Alejo


'Untitled' by Skip Hursh

Robert Löbel: Wind

After completing an extensive and hugely successful festival tour, Robert Löbel's animated short 'Wind' is finally up online for us to enjoy in its entirety.

"'Wind' is an animated short about the daily life of people living in a windy area who seem helplessly exposed to the weather. However, the inhabitants have learned to deal with their difficult living conditions. The wind creates a natural system for living"

Robert also kindly contributed an illustration of his favourite childhood cartoon, 'Teenage Mutant Hero Turtles,' to the launch issue of the Animated Review 'zine which is available online here: Animated Review Shop, or through a selection of stockists across the UK.

Mothlight Creative: From Dust

Inspired by the words of Carl Sagan, in reference to an image of the Earth captured by Voyager 1 at a distance of 4 billion miles, Mothlight Created the animated ode to space exploration and Earths insignificance in the vastness of the universe.

"Look again at that dot. That's here. That's home. That's us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every "superstar," every "supreme leader," every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there--on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam." Carl Sagan (Pale Blue Dot, 1994)


Thomas Medicus: Fish & Bird

Thomas Medicus aka Raumkunstraum creates all sort of visual art from illustration and painting through to music and sculpture, even occasional pieces of animation...
 
His latest animated work, 'Fish & Bird,' tells the story of a fleeting moment of freedom experienced by a fish as it momentarily transforms in to bird. Thomas has also produced a simplified version of the short as a rather nice looking flipbook!




Johnny Kelly For The Salvation Army

Johnny Kelly directed/animated this trio of spots for Salvation Army's Christmas campaign. Their simple stop motion pop-up design beautifully demonstrate how just a few coins can help Salvation Army change people’s lives.






Another Companion To Books From The Simpsons In Alphabetical Order



'Olivier Lebrun: Another Companion To Books From The Simpsons In Alphabetical Order'

Publisher: Rollo Press
Release Date: November 2013
Features: 352 pages, Offset Print, Softcover, Simpsons Yellow Pages
Language: English
ISBN: 978-3-906213-00-2
 
Following on from last years hugely popular 'A Pocket Guide To Books From The Simpsons In Alphabetical Order' comes a second volume compiling a further 216 screenshots of fictional publications from 'The Simpsons'.
 
Clearly, French graphic designer, Olivier Lebrun is obsessed, having now amassed over 300 images for his strange collection. Like the first volume 'Another Companion To Books From The Simpsons In Alphabetical Order' is printed by Rollo Press in a small, desirable and suitably glossy Simpsons yellow 'zine format!



Agnès Doolaeghe & Franck Mallez: Grande Mesure

Film-making duo Agnès Doolaeghe and Franck Mallez, using David Merveille's illustrations of Mr. Hulot, animated this ode to slapstick king Jacques Tati.

The spot is intended to mark the opening of the new Berluti store. Recreating Paris' bohemian Rue de Sèvres, where the new luxury menswear boutique is located, in a simple, pure and elegant aesthetic reminiscent of Tati's films and Berluti's classic style.


Robert Löbel: Animated Dreams 15

Robert Löbel animated this "greeting card" in celebration of Animated Dreams 15th animation festival. Animated Dreams is the oldest and largest animated film festival in Estonia, aiming to promote both international animation culture alongside works by Estonian animators.

Robert also kindly contributed an illustration of his favourite childhood cartoon, 'Teenage Mutant Hero Turtles,' to the launch issue of the Animated Review 'zine which is available online here: Animated Review Shop, or through a selection of stockists across the UK.


Ian Stevenson: Awww That's Cute

Watch Ian Stevenson's latest obscure animated fragment 'Awww That's Cute.'

Ian also kindly contributed an illustration of his favourite childhood cartoon, 'SuperTed,' to the launch issue of the Animated Review 'zine which is available online here: Animated Review Shop, or through a selection of stockists across the UK.

Beats Antique - Beezlebub

Directed by Ivan Landau and animated by Webster Colcord, this music video for Beats Antiques track 'Beezlebub' was created for projection during the band's live performances. The video sees a hoard of demonic creatures including shape-shifting arm chairs, hideous Cyclops' and a tentacled creature that consumes Claymation likenesses of the band members!


STEW: Pikachu T-shirt



Tara Stewart, an artists and musician originally hailing from Australia and now living in Dublin, has launched her first line of T-shirts under the STEW label.

Her grungy, 90s nostalgia orientated, and purposefully tacky hand-drawn designs include acid rave Teletubbies, punk Furbys and this down-and-out Pikachu. Currently the T-shirts are exclusively available through 9 Crow Street, a designer and vintage specialist store in Dublin. However, the STEW online store will open soon where you can snap up one of these great t-shirts for just €30!

Look out for more designs coming in the new year.

Jackson And His Computerband - G.I. Jane (Fill Me Up)

'G.I. Jane (Fill Me Up)' is the title track from the remix EP by Jackson And His Computerband, which is out now on Warp Records.

This official animated music video, created by Myzyk & Moriceau of Division & Mathematic, is clearly influenced by the tracks alien-esque computer vocals, the 80s synth-pop beat and a whole variety of hentai anime films! Jackson describes the video as "castration, dynamite and phallic entertainment for everyone." Suffice to say this is "Not Safe For Work." There is a censored version version to watch, but it's so distorted you might as well be staring at a blank screen.


Sophie Gate: Marcy's Tenderloin

Following on from the recent wave of superb RCA first year Masters films we've already posted on the Animated Review (including work by Jessica Ashman, Nicolas Ménard and Jesse Collett,) comes another beauty.

Sophie Gate's animated short 'Marcy's Tenderloin' is quite frankly an indescribable, but must-watch piece of animation. You're certainly unlikely to see anything so disturbingly visceral for a long time to come. Watch it now!

"It's interesting, but not an interest of ours, more a trait, that our interest in people deteriorates as soon as theirs becomes great. Marcy gets fisted by this evolutional glitch."


Andy Rementer: Going West

Andy Rementer's illustrations have periodically appeared in various issues of "everyday life interiors" magazine 'Apartamento,' from a colouring book in issue four to the more recent serialised comic-strip tribulations of a bohemian mouse, created in collaboration with Margherita Urbani.

The third instalment of this comic book series, due for inclusion in issue 12 of 'Apartamento', has be preceded with this animated teaser, titled 'Going West'...


Jesse Collett: Stinker

A boy has a spiritual, contemplative encounter with his riddle spouting reflection, seen in a puddle of his own urine... obviously?!

'Stinker' by RCA first year Animation MA student Jesse Collett, is certainly one of the strangest animated shorts we've encountered all year!

"Man the stinker becomes man the thinker..."


Alan Dalby: Adventure Time Fan Art



Inspired by the season five episode of Adventure Time 'We Fixed A Truck', Manchester based illustrator Alan Dalby has created this piece of Banana Man fan art. Featuring everything require to fix a truck, from an acetylene torch to a six pack of soda... no cylinder head though!

We've also posted a much older piece of Alan's Adventure Time fan art, based on the season one episode 'Wizard.'

Nicolas Ménard: Somewhere

Originally from Montreal, Nicolas Ménard now resides in London, Where he is currently completing a Masters in Animation at the Royal College of Art. 'Somewhere' is his final RCA first year film, and also marks his first real attempt at creating a narrative driven piece of animation. His previous output combined an illustrative and graphic design aesthetic which he applied, not only to his poetic and conceptual animated works, but to a multitude of printed ephemera too.

'Somewhere' tells the story of an astronaut stranded on a distant planet, whilst his withered and disembodied arm remains on Earth with his partner. Drawing on Nicolas' own experiences of moving to a new country, 'Somewhere' explores the isolation of being separated from home, and the connections that still remain.

Nicolas also kindly contributed an illustration of his favourite childhood cartoon, 'Captain Star,' to the launch issue of the Animated Review 'zine which is available online here: Animated Review Shop, or through a selection of stockists across the UK.



'Captain Star' illustrated by Nicolas Ménard for the Animated Review 'zine.

Jessica Ashman: The Cycle

'The Cycle' was animated during Jessica Ashman's first year of study on the Animation MA course at the Royal College of Art. You may recognise her name from her Scottish BAFTA and New Talent BAFTA award winning short film 'Fixing Luka.'

Inspired by the anatomical drawings of Fritz Kahn, Jessica attempts to visualise the inner turmoil of the repetitive process of love and heartbreak. It's a beautifully conceived idea brilliantly crafted and animated as a pseudo-biological educational film.

Whilst the light bulb heart, covered in shards of glass, flickering between a dull glow and bright luminance, and the organised piles of papers in the stomach being blown into disarray are both wonderfully symbolic. We just love the brain machine which takes in spikey hormonal signals and defecates out rationalised neat thoughts until it gets over-loaded and malfunctions.
 
Brilliance!!!


Kevin Pearce: We've Been Lovin'

The second track released from Kevin Pearce's new album, 'Matthew Hopkins And The Wormhole,' is accompanied by a brilliantly animated music video from Gavin C Robinson.

Gavin has applied an almost primitive Canadian tribal art aesthetic to the video, through his choice of creatures, colours and patternation. This stylistic choice flows harmoniously with Kevin's ethereal acoustic folk music, even though he hails from a "ramshackle corner of Essex!"


John Lewis: The Bear And The Hare

The ambitiously extravagant John Lewis Christmas adverts are becoming as much a part of our festive traditions as Turkey with all the trimmings. This years creation is a masterful and innovative combination of 2D stop motion drawings shot on a 3D set called 'The Bear And The Hare.' We've also posted a making of video below which highlights the application of this unusual process.

The ad was directed by Yves Geleyn and Elliot Dear through Hornet/Blinkink, with The hand-drawn elements created by Disney veterans Dominic Carola and Aaron Blasie (who co-directed Disney's strikingly similar looking 'Brother Bear.') Also featuring a cover version of Keane's 'Somewhere Only We Know' by Lily Allen alongside the extensive roster of animation talent the advert racked up a production cost of over £1,000,000!



Hoakser: Thomas The Unbuffed Tank Engine



Hoakser has built a solid reputation in the UK graffiti scene, with his distinctive characters and classic old school graffiti lettering style, from his base in Kings Heath, Birmingham.

His work also covers a whole variety of commissions, with custom toys being his speciality. His latest creation is 'Thomas The Unbuffed Tank Engine,' a vandalised miniature of one of our favourite childhood cartoon characters. The piece is a one-off custom model and is available now via Hoakser's online store, for just £60! Somebody needs to snap this up quick before we give in to the temptation ourselves.

"In 'Thomas the Tank Engine' land, the buff was never invented. Whilst the Fat Controller slept Thomas was gagged and vandalised by an unknown assailant.. After several attacks, Thomas was taken off the tracks and left to rust..."

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Corrie Francis Parks: A Tangled Tale

Corrie Francis Parks has released her sublimely gorgeous, Kickstarter funded, sand-animation short 'A Tangled Tale' online!

Through compositing and motion design, it is the first short (to our knowledge) to experiment with the silhouette aesthetic of traditional sand-animation to include vibrant colours and slick cinematic movement. 'A Tangled Tale' seamlessly blends traditional techniques with technological innovation to achieve Corrie's strangely enjoyable and compelling signature style. You can gleam further insight into her fascinating process by watching the 'making of' video, also posted below.

"A lone fish, hooked by an angler's line, encounters another in the same dire situation. As the two fish struggle against their fate, they develop an inevitable, entangling attraction. Is it love or merely a will to survive?"



Sam Dunn: Porco Rosso Illustration

 
Celebrating their fiftieth release Little White Lies magazine took a break from their usual features and review content, and instead assigned 50 guest contributors a year between 1964 and 2013, from which they had to choose a film. Each contributor was also asked to highlight a specific frame or scene from the film that could then be illustrated by a wide array of seriously talented artist.

'Porco Rosso' is the only animated feature film to make it into the issue! London based illustrator Sam Dunn accompanied the piece with a re-imagining of the climactic dogfight scene from the Studio Ghibli classic. Delicately crafted by hand with pen and ink then coloured digitally with many layers of found and forged textures, the image resonates with a traditional hand-crafted warmth. It would look even more stunning produced as a screen print.
 

SOUR - Life Is Music

This is incredible...

When we first watched this music video for SOUR's new song 'Life Is Music' we assumed the Phenakistoscope effect on the CD was created digitally. It was actually achieved with the seamless editing together of 189 individually printed and filmed Phenakistoscope CDs. The CDs used in the video are now actually for sale via SOUR's website as numbered limited edition art discs, so the fans can own a little piece of the music video. A surprisingly large number of these have already sold out, but there are still a few available if you're quick!

Inspired by the songs theme of "the circle of life, and how music is its rhythm maker," directing duo Masashi Kawamura (of PARTY) & Kota Iguchi (of Tymote) devised this stunning concept, and executed it perfectly!

Watch the 'Making of SOUR's Life is Music' video also posted below...



Life Versa: Iron Heart Print

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Life Versa has released a new print based on Brad Bird's excellent movie 'The Iron Giant' via Metro Orange.

Titled 'Iron Heart,' the print is available in two colour variants (gold and silver) with small editions of only 25 each. Every print is silk screened on to Silver French paper with metallic inks, hand signed and numbered by the artist.

Pick up on e of the few remaining copies via the Metro Orange online gallery.

Michel Gondry: Is The Man Who Is Tall Happy? (Official Trailer)

Michel Gondry, now known for his live action films like 'Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind,' 'Be Kind Rewind' and 'The Science Of Sleep,' takes a step back to his animation roots that he so readily explored in his earlier career as a music video director. Behold the trailer for his new animated documentary 'Is The Man Who Is Tall Happy?'

Gondry has always expressed a passion for creating animation, having also released an animated adaptation of Julie Doucet's 'My New New York Diary' and a short film titled 'Haircut Mouse,' alongside these feature films and his other commercial projects. What makes his new feature film so intriguing, is it's the first time he's applied his animation style to a feature length project, and he couldn't have picked a more Gondry-esq subject matter.

'Is The Man Who Is Tall Happy?' features the director in conversation with linguist, philosopher and world-renowned thinker Noam Chomsky, accompanied by Gondry's hand-made animated visuals.

The film will have its world premiere at the DOC NYC Festival in November, it will then be distributed by Sundance Selects in limited theatrical release across America. It may be some time before this reached the UK, but without a doubt this going to be the cultural animation highlight of our cinematic calendar sometime in 2014. We can't wait to see this one!


Joey Fourr - Get A Lief

Musician, doodler, screen printer, comic artist, animator and all round creative odd-jobber Joey Fourr, illustrates all you need to create a piece of stunningly good animation is a ream of paper, some cheap felt tips, a scanner and a great deal of patience.

To accompany his latest musical release, 'Get A Lief', Joey animated this music video himself. The track is the first song from the 'WE' cassette EP, released by Bad Paintings in December 2012. The cassette was limited to 50 copies with a 3 colour screen-printed slipcase artwork, featuring similar character doodles to those seen in the video.

Whilst the cassette release is now sold out the music is still available to steam from here: Joey Four Bandcamp

Trick Or Treat 2013 Animation Artwork

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Original artwork and goodies from the Hangfire Halloween themed 'Trick Or Treat' exhibition, recently held in Bristol, have gone online for sale. The show featured a whole host of great contemporary street artists and illustrators, including a few AR favourites (Rich-T, Kid Acne, Ventsa and Bob2.)

As you might have guessed several of the pieces up for grabs feature a selection of animated characters you're sure to recognise. An original by Rich-T features Goofy on a fluorescent hot pink paper, Ventse has a piece featuring a stoned Popeye, and Bob2's selection includes drawings of the Pink Panther, SpongeBob SquarePants and Mickey Mouse!
 
There are other cartoon characters to spot too, but you'll have to check out the whole catalogue of available artwork here: Trick Or Treat 2013
 
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NETWORKS - Ab-Rah

We can think of several Japanese musicians who release consistently great animated videos to accompany their music, Shugo Tokumaru, Manabu Himeda, Yoshiharu Abe and Cuushe all spring to mind as having recently featured on the AR blog.

NETWORKS are the latest band to come to our attention through their fantastic animated collaborations with animator/director Kohei Yoshino, one half of independent animation studio Tank-Top. The NETWORKS hail from Osaka, where they produce their unique style on minimalist dance music. Two of their recent releases have been accompanied by animated visuals by Kohei and we're happy to present them both here...

The track 'Ab-Rah' features a hand-drawn animated sequence created over a series of magnetic sketching toys, which is such a simple but wonderful concept. The second video for 'Ako-Vone' is stylised to look like the simple vector illustrations you'd expect see on in-flight safety instructions, before spiralling to its surreal conclusion.

These music videos are simply fantastic, both for their musical and animated content! We certainly hope to see further collaborations between these artists.


NUMéROBé - Lighthouse

BBBlaster is a VJ-ing, illustration and animation project comprised of Loup Blaster and Dalkhafine. They work alongside music producers Hibou Blaster and NUMéROBé to create fantastic animated music videos. Their latest offering is this superb piece for NUMéROBé  track 'Lighthouse.' Check it out...


Patrick Doyon: La Pastèque

Check out Patrick Doyon's sweet animated trailer to mark the 15th anniversary of French Canadian comic book publisher LA PASTÈQUE. The anniversary is also marked by an exhibition, which is also accompanied by a book featuring comic strips from 15 LA PASTÈQUE artists, including Patrick himself!


Help Kickstart New Adventures of Morph

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Aardman Animations co-founder Peter Lord has launched a Kickstarter campaign to bring back Morph!

It's hard to believe it has been over 30 years since Morph first appeared on our TV screens as Tony Harts animated comic foil in 'Take Hart.' Morph went on to also star in 'Hart Beat,' 'Smart,' and 'The Amazing Adventures of Morph.' Now it's looking increasingly likely Morph will be making a much wanted return.

Aardman themselves have already fronted half of the capital to produce 12 new one-minute 'Morph' episodes and have turned to their fans in order to raise the additional £75,000 required. An added incentive for Peter and the Aardman team to turn to a crowd-funding platform like Kickstarter, is it enables them to engage with the fans in the development and production of the 12 new shorts. They're actively encouraging Morph fans to suggest their desires, ideas and gags in the comments section of the Kickstarter and the official Morph Facebook page.

We're all really excited about this becoming a reality and, Aardman having already raised the majority of the  required funds just a few days into the campaign, it looks almost certain Morph will be back!

Wong Ping: Slow Sex

We don't really know what to say about Chinese illustrator, animator and audio visual director Wong Ping, and his strange animated short 'Slow Sex', other than we like it!


Klasse Recordings - KLS303 EP

Bob 2 (aka Spray Gang) has appeared on the AR blog numerous times for his fantastically irreverent cartoon character themed prints and apparel. However, this is the first time we've been able to post a piece of actual animation from the Sheffield-based graffiti artist and graphic designer.

Combining animated GIFs and 80s inspired paint illustration into a new art-form he has dubbed 'Giffiti', Bob 2 has compiled a selection of hip-hop-esque looping sequences to promote Klasse Recordings' new EP 'KLS303.'

The EP features music from Hermans, Luca Lozano, Foolishman, Florian Blauensteiner, Johanna Knutsson & Hans Berg and is available to buy here: Beatport


Felix Sputnik for StripStiQ

AR posted some looping "work-in-progress" re-edits of a sexy striptease animated by Felix Sputnik (real name Michael Schlingmann) back in July.

The sequence was actually animated for a Dutch Furniture designer who manufactures a product called the StripStiQ, which is basically a wooden Christmas tree to hang dirty laundry on... Whilst the idea of grandly displaying you dirty clothes may seem somewhat repugnant, this animated spot makes it positively appealing!


Savages - Marshal Dear

Produced by Beakus and directed/animated by Hungarian born RCA graduate Gergely Wootsch, this incredible music video was created to accompany the Savages' track 'Marshal Dear.'

Wootsch worked with Savages guitarist Gemma Thompson’s original storyboards inspired by Kurt Vonnegut’s 1969 novel 'Slaughterhouse Five,' specifically a scene centred around a WWII bomb factory worker, in the development of the videos narrative. Thompson said of the project, ‘This scene would replay in my head and I could imagine it as an animation of the lines flowing into each other, much like early hand-drawn animation created to accentuate a musical score.‘

Handled in a similarly stylised bleak, yet tender, aesthetic to 'The Hungry Corpse' (Gergely's last animated short), Wootsch was the perfect pairing for this refreshingly thought-provoking and visually captivating music video.


Constantinos Chaidalis: Sophomore

Greek designer/director/animator/artist Constantinos Chaidalis has just released 'Sophomore,' a minimalist animated short based on his striking series of collaged images.

Halloween Fancy Dress Fail

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As a special Halloween treat here is a random selection of people who've put far too much effort into terrible cartoon themed fancy dress costumes!


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Ian Mark Stewart: The Pumpkin Comic

What a fantastic Halloween treat! Animator Ian Mark Stewart labored for 5 years over countless lost weekends, hollowing out 275 pumpkins to achieve this incredibly smooth stop motion sequence of a Jack-O-Lantern telling terrible pumpkin puns!

James Kwan: Mooon

James Kwan has released his fuzzy, cute, and a little bit eerie, stop motion short 'Mooon' online.

The animated short sees a Muppet-esque spacebaby drift through a felt universe in search of his missing moon friend.


Young: I Didn't Know That Episode 1

Manchester-based creative agency Young specialise in creating brand idents, print, motion graphics, illustration and animation for a variety of clients. Alongside their commercial work they also produce occasional personal projects showcasing their own brand of wacky humour. The latest of which is a series of animated shorts revealing curious celebrity facts. Episode 1 of 'I Didn't Know That' looks at Elton John! Did you know he can solve the Rubik's Cube in just 37 days?!


Night In The Woods

Scott Benson (of the Late Night Work Club and other projects) has teamed up with game designer Alec Holowka (Aquaria, Towerfall) on an indie game titled 'Night In The Woods.'

They launched their Kickstarter project on the 23rd of October and the full $50,000 was pledged in under 26 hours! Now, a few days into the fundraising, they've amassed more than double their initial goal! There is still plenty of time to get behind the project, so head over to their Kickstarter page and pledge a few quid to make this game as fabulous as it possibly can be. If the end result is half as good as this animated teaser, they're certainly on to a winner.

Bob 2: Crew Pink Panther Print

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Bob 2 (aka Spray Gang) has a new Pink Panther inspired print up for grabs via his online store. Price at £25 and limited to just 20 hand signed and numbered copies, 'Crew' is sure to be snapped up quickly!

This particular print is based on Bob 2's 'Cool Cat' GIF walk cycle, which we've also posted below



In other news, Bob 2 is working on his first animated project in a music video collaboration with Klasse Recordings. Have a sneak preview of the project here: Giffiti