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  #1  
Old 05-23-2016, 09:01 AM
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Default Animation

When a series of images come together to tell a story to our eyes, it's as if we're watching a waking dream. Shapes and colors, that give themselves away as being painstakingly crafted after months or even years of work, make us wonder of a train of thought that the natural world just can't seem to conjure.

Every Monday, I'm going to post a piece of animation that will preferably share three qualities. It will be short, it will be obscure and it will be enthralling. Feel free to post your own examples.

My first post is indicative of all three categories I'm going for. It's a piece designed by animator Jake Fried, and to my knowledge he's never explained the story behind this piece. When I watch it, I imagine it as the natural rhythm of humanity come alive through art.

The Deep End:

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  #2  
Old 05-30-2016, 07:49 AM
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This week, I'm submitting an animated short that's extremely significant to me in that it literally took me over twenty years to track it down. In fact; I only just found it after starting this thread.

It's by Italian animator Guido Manuli, who apparently has a vast repertoire of animated shorts to his credit. I happened to catch this one while watching Bravo late at night back in 1995, when their programming didn't shamelessly pander to the hipster crowd, and had been searching for it ever since.

This short film tells the story of a life created and a life prevented and all the wondrous chaos that would occur due to and in spite of that life. I find it very inspirational, and it's very easy to like the subject of this story.

Thanks to the internet, we can now enjoy the rare treat of "+1 -1" by Guido Manuli:

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Old 06-06-2016, 08:25 AM
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This next offering might be a little too cute for some, but it's probably the most "safe for work" cartoon that I'll submit to this collection.

This animated short was created by animation directors Jonas Dahlbeck and Pernilla Hindsefelt, both of whom mainly kept their work within their native Sweden. This example of their mastery, however obscure, managed to transcend international waters and find a small following in the US.

Based on the hit jazz song by Duke Ellington and Ray Brown; Do Nothing Till You Hear From Me:

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Old 06-13-2016, 08:26 AM
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It's been a rough week for the US, so this week's submission is something I recognize as being like chicken soup for the soul.

There was a movie released in 2001 called "Waking Life", and it was a collection of rotoscoped scenes that would explore several different perspectives on existentialism. In itself, it's a collection of some of the most brilliant dialogue one could ever experience from a movie.

For me; the scenes you're about to watch (from the same brief video) are the most brilliant of the entire movie. Like the rest; they're not meant to change your way of thinking, they're meant to inspire you to think. The image of a young man on a rooftop seeming to ramble, but finding inner-contentment as a result of that ritualistic rambling that -- to me -- is as if he's behaving in a polar opposite manner unto society's more common ritualistic OCDs. Just speaking, dropping your guard and being free.

Waking Life, A Thousand Years is but an Instant:

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Old 06-20-2016, 08:11 AM
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For all the different styles of animation, one style -- Japanese Animation -- has captured imaginations like no other. It's a genre of animation where the expectation is that while the stories may be wildly fantastic, the occurrences that affect the characters in that story will be reflected on in a more realistic way.

In 1986, a man named Taku Mayumura had captured the imaginations of several animation directors with his short stories. Of those short stories, published as the compilation "Labyrinth Tales", one stood out as the most captivating for animation director Yoshiaki Kawajiri.

Produced in 1987 and dubbed in English in 1989, the story of a man who was desperate to cheat death until it could finally claim him.

The Running Man:

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Old 06-27-2016, 08:10 AM
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England has been in the news, and I've been enjoying a crash course in the British political game as a result. I understand British politics like I understand animation, I have a very superficial level of comprehension for both. Even with my admittedly meager understanding of animation, I'm able to recognize that certain countries develop very distinctive stylistic traits in their animated work.

In 1993, a budding British animation director named Stephen Palmer was inspired by his own father's case of blindness and dementia to create an animated short called Blindscape. It was nominated for an Academy Award in 1994, though very few people have seen it as -- to my knowledge -- it's never been made commercially available to consumers. A treat for the eyes, and a warning to those who take theirs for granted.

Blindscape:

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Old 06-27-2016, 01:26 PM
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Disney's The Prince of Egypt is considered to have some of the best animation ever put to film. The movie grossed 218 million and had a scene in it that took (three?) Years to animate. I'm not entirely sure on the total number of years....but the following scene is - Parting the Red Sea- ..




Bonus : For animation purists or anti-Disney gang members, you'll be happy to hear the film wasn't all paper drawn animation, there was computer generated help in portions of the film.
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Old 07-04-2016, 11:39 AM
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I wish everyone in the US a happy Independence Day, the most star spangled of US holidays. The nation is roughly 239 years old now, and back in 1975 it celebrated a huge milestone as it was becoming 200 years old.

The bicentennial celebration seemed banal and uneventful to animator Vince Collins, so he decided to spruce up the festivities with an animated short called "200". I'm not totally sure if this is a genuine acknowledgement of what makes the US so awesome or if this is a mocking observation of my country's tendency toward unhinged indulgence.

You decide:

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Old 07-11-2016, 07:54 AM
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I've been getting back to my Canadian roots lately, while I'm still technically a Yank as I was born in the US, I feel that the Canuck influences granted to me by my Mother allow me to feel good about appreciating Canadian contributions to the arts.

The National Film Board of Canada has existed since 1939, and has published some of the most amazing media I've ever experienced.

The short film I'm about to share has a special place in my heart, in that I was recovering from surgery back in 1996 and could not for the life of me fall asleep in an unfamiliar bed right after having been anesthetized for six hours. It was around midnight, and I was flipping through channels of infomercials and test signals when I came across this film. I don't know what channel it was on, but it was so damn mesmerizing that I eventually fell asleep and woke up thinking that I had dreamt this film.

Thankfully; it's a very real film about taking pride in your existence and seeing that true beauty comes from within.

Created by animation director Ishu Patel, Paradise:

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Old 07-15-2016, 09:49 PM
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AKIRA

Akira is a future based Japanese animated film that came out in 1988. It takes place in NEO-Tokyo and the story revolves around a secret military project that turns a biker gang member into a mind controlling freak of nature that could potentially destroy the entire city.

When I first watched it I was blown away. I hadn't seen any cartoon like it before and wasn't used to seeing any type of hyper violence in an animated film before this one. It started me on a short lived Anime' craze for the next couple of years.

EDIT: I couldn't find a decent portion of the film to put in here so I put this song link in there instead.
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