Bearing Gifs An Animated Advent Calendar

Bearing GIFs is a collaborative project curated by illustrator Charlene Man showcasing 25 different artists, each having animated a looping gif based on the theme 'Meme.' Presented as an advent calendar, starting tomorrow they'll be publishing one Gif a day in the run-up to Christmas.
The contributing artists are as follows:

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.

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


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

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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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


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!