Mashed was student Anthony Holden’s final project at Brigham Young University. Holden did all the art and animation. It was completed in 2009–with boards, design, and other pre-production happening from January to April, and all of the animation, backgrounds, and compositing taking place from September to December. In the end, the film won an award from the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (“Student Emmy”) in 2010 for best musical composition – awarded to composer Richard Williams (not the animation legend). As for director Holden — he was recently hired at DreamWorks as a story artist.
Student George Metaxas made this short stop-mo animated film using only card board materials. The results got him accepted this year into the experimental animation program at Cal Arts. He says “It’s an allegory about the sacrifices of the creative process”. Whatever it is, I like it.
So I was shopping at my local Target store today, walking past the Toy Story 3 merchandise, when I spotted this Barbie doll tie-in (at left). What caught my attention was the exclaimation below the Barbie logo: Barbie Loves Woody! I’ll bet she does. Since we know she’s got a thing for Ken, and since the lettering is all in caps, I’m not sure if the “Woody” Barbie loves is Andy’s sheriff – or something else? P.S. Barbie take note: Too much “loving Woody” may cause a “Choking Hazard” – according to the warning on the box!
Conor Finnegan’s cute l’il graduate film from the IADT National Film School in Ireland, is a mix of stop-motion, live action and hand drawn animation. It was shot in his attic on a Cannon EOS 5D, Cannon 450D and “basically any camera I could borrow from friends and siblings”.
It’s the first day of Summer – and Mike Van Eaton has just shared with me another rare piece of animation history. Click the thumbnails below to enlarge: at left a beautiful company Christmas card (circa 1936) from Hugh Harman and Rudolph Ising featuring an embedded strip of film. Below center is the strip of film, enlarged and backlit, featuring their stars Bosko and Honey, Little Cheeser and The Pups in original paintings with a Christmas motif. As a fan of MGM’s Happy Harmonies cartoons, this vintage Christmas card is a delightful discovery — with three great new paintings, never seen publicly before.
Below right, for good measure, is the original art from the end title of Peace On Earth (1939) from the cache of MGM title art Van Eaton unearthed a few weeks ago. The Christmas card is not for sale – and I thank Mike for allowing me to share it with our readers who will really appreciate it:
Animation and comics artist Scott Shaw has been posting a series of autobiographical mini comics online. His latest is based on a hilarious moment during his early years at Hanna Barbera, when Joe Barbera had Scott come into his office to listen to some music. Check it out here. Strange but true!
Our friend Martha Sigall has been in Intensive Care for the last few days. According to her son, Lee:
She was in ICU for four days with septic shock. The origin of her infection is still unknown. She had some damage to major organs. Some of that has improved and some remains. She was transferred to a regular room Saturday, then she had a little setback after midnight with a fever which has since remitted. Sunday was a very tiring day for her. We still don’t know when she will be discharged, and when she does, she will have a long bit of recovery to do. If you don’t know her address, send a private message to me, and I will try to get to my messages from time to time. Spread the word if you know someone who knows Martha. To know her is to love her.
That’s for sure. Martha is one of our last living links to the golden age of animation. She started at Leon Schelesinger’s studio (Warner Bros.) in the 1930s, and later worked for the early UPA, MGM, and inked and painted cels for Bob Clampett, Bill Melendez, Chuck Jones and practically everyone in the business. Her life in animation was recounted in this 2005 book. Recently Martha started a series of You Tube videos recalling her career. Below is the one she posted last month. Get well, Martha – you are the greatest!
Here’s the first of a series of little shorts about Giants created by designer/animators Yann Benedi and Celine Desrumaux. They say the idea is to “discover the untold truths about Giants and their conflicts with human beings”. You can read more about the Giants to come at their CelineYann blogspot.
This week: The Argyle Sweater (6/13) by Scott Hilburn; a Clay Bennett editorial cartoon (6/19); Mother Goose and Grimm (6/19) by Mike Peters; Lola (6/17) by Todd Clark; My Cage (6/15) by Ed Power and Melissa DeJusus; and Rubes (6/16) by Leigh Rubin.
(Special thanks to our crack team of comic strip monitors: Jim Lahue, Kurtis Findlay, Ed Austin, Charles Brunbaker and Uncle Wayne)
Our “Saturday Morning Cartoon” this week is an amazing student film mixing CG backgrounds with hand drawn “anime”. The Subway Time was created by Dongzhen.Li, a student at the Beijing Film Academy. Watch the film below, then check out The Making-Of Video.
Go see Toy Story 3 in 3D if only to see one of the best animated shorts ever created – Teddy Newton’s Day and Night. Both films are great – Newton’s short is a masterpiece. Post your thoughts in our comments section below (Comments are open only to those who have seen the films).
Scion’s LA gallery is opening a group exhibition featuring classic and new works by Gary Panter, Bob Zoell and Devin Flynn. An opening reception for “ZPFfffft!!!” is Saturday night (June 19th) from 7 to 10 p.m.
Gary Panter was a featured artist in the touring exhibition, Masters of American Comics, and is well known for his Emmy Award winning set designs for Pee-wee’s Playhouse; Devin Flynn has exhibited at Deitch Projects and created the Adult Swim web series Y’all So Stupid; and Bob Zoell is a pioneer of Los Angeles street art, and is a regular contributor of cover art to The New Yorker.
Scion Installation Space, 3521 Helms Ave. (at National), Culver City, CA 90232. The reception is free with complimentary valet parking and an open bar. All artists will be present and the exhibit will run until July 10.
Based on email received this week from several Brew readers who attended E3 – this is the game with the most interesting animation and art direction. At least in 2D. And I have to agree. Rayman Origins is a prequel to the original Ubisoft Rayman game published in 1995: