Human-Powered Animation

Can animation exist in real time? Without film, without video, without digital tricks… this is the opening ceremony for football’s Asian Cup and these are apparently workers for Samsung in South Korea. Pretty amazing…


(Thanks, Rob Carroll)


  • http://ghostbot.blogspot.com roque

    I can’t even imagine the rehearsals.

  • http://www.kuri-ousity.com/ Lissa

    Wow… not that is certainly something. Wonder how many hours of practice ‘that’ took. Nearly seemless, very impressive.

  • http://lennardschuurmans.blogspot.com lenny

    crazy taste for music they have haha!
    still don’t really get it how they do this stuff..

  • The No Man

    wow.

  • http://www.abelboddy.com C. Edwards

    Is it me or does it seem like our friends in the east are just operating on a whole different level…

  • uncle wayne

    As much as I loathe sports….that is as fantastic and amazing (& as gorgeous) as it canjust HOW many rehearsals!!??

    Only you would post that on an animation site! Too too fabb!!

  • richie

    check out this documentary state of mind for how far North Korea push this for there mass games.
    LInks here and here.

  • Andrew

    They DO seem to be operating on a different level.

    “Okay, YOU are digit 56 by 3, and make sure digit 57 by 3 doesn’t stand too close to you.”

  • asimina

    so instead of cogs in the machine, they’re pixels on the screen…

  • nathan

    “Can animation exist in real time? Without film, without video, without digital tricks?”

    im pretty sure ive made a few flipbooks as a kid :)

  • red pill junkie

    Impressive…

    Hey! Maybe that’s why Samsung is so good at making flat panel TVs!

    See? instead of pixels, they use millions of TRAINED ANTS!! ;-)

  • Mawnck

    Looks like animation to me. Only the method of showing the drawings in sequence is different.

  • Mosnar Semaj Divad

    A be-caped update of the late 50′s stadium bleacher flip-card section.

    Organized block of fans seated in the stands held different color 2ft squares above their heads forming words and pictures. Popular when there were only 2 black & white cameras in the whole stadium and could only be viewed from the bleachers and that new fangle TV thing from the side opposite the flip-card section. Not nearly as complex nor mobile as this Asian implementation has way more people-pixels and the cape-flip is faster than the a speeding card. Just bet the sequences were programmed on a PC and everyone on the field has real-time instructions fed to eacn via wireless LAN.

    The American flip-card-section displays fell into dis-use at about the same time beer was allowed into sports stadiums. DJR

  • http://www.hobbit1978.deviantart.com Mr. James

    I was in our high school marching band that was over 300 people and I can tell you that for almost 6 months solid, twice a week we would practice, rain or shine, in the florida heat so I can truly appreciate this on a human endurance level as well as an animation level. I can also say that since I was in marching band I would do almost anything to be a part of something like this again!! DANG! That was IMPRESSIVE! What do you say we get together this weekend and try and whip something up for the Superbowl next year?!

  • Chris Sobieniak

    > check out this documentary state of mind for how far North Korea push this for there mass games.

    You know, I wanted to make a crack about that here, but you beat me to the point! (at least the South’s usage of the concept had a purpose to it commercially) China could probably do one too for their opening ceremonies of the 2008 Beijing Olympics, though it would probably be one big advertisement for tourism. :-)

    Here’s one vid detailing the North Korea’s version of a “video wall” composed of 20,000 schoolchildren holding up colored cards, and conducted by only one guy!
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GwKWttrEaSM

  • Chris Sobieniak

    > The American flip-card-section displays fell into dis-use at about the same time beer was allowed into sports stadiums.

    Being reminded it was used for the opening ceremonies of the 1984 Olympics in LA to show a bunch of flags that filled a quarter or so of the stadium (it sorta 1-up’ed Moscow’s measly flip-card effort for the closing ceremony of their games).

  • rokerovakero

    This is from South Korea, not North Korea, you know, the whole different country…. lol

  • Quiet_Desperation

    Every marching band in the world has just been pwned by Samsung employees.

    Lovely TVs, too. I have my eye on an LED based DLP.

  • richie

    yeah i know rokerovakero, just comparing the souths to the norths effort and use of flip cards

  • Chris Sobieniak

    > Every marching band in the world has just been pwned by Samsung employees.
    >
    > Lovely TVs, too. I have my eye on an LED based DLP.

    I know someone who just bought a Samsung 40″ HD set he had to show off on YouTube!

  • http://www.autodaddy.blogspot.com tom

    It’s like a visual orchestra! Amazing.

    Thanks a tub for posting this. I would never have seen it otherwise.

  • Benjamin De Schrijver

    Ha, this is great! Must be a strange feeling to be in it, without actually being able to witness the whole.

    As for the North-Korean mass games, as gorgeous as they are, everytime I see something from it I’m just disgusted because of being reminded of this documentary: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FVA4kgVGmX0

  • gorblat

    Ive seen this sort of thing before at college homecomings. not to say it wasnt cool, but its basically like a living jumbo tron. wouldnt call it animation though.

    didnt kodak do something like this a few years back i na big field making a photo blink by changing the cards?

    hm… off to trusty youtube…

  • http://www.shamoozal.com Frank Summers

    i can’t even imagine how to orchestrate something like that. really cool.

  • http://trevour.blogspot.com Trevour

    Impressive – no matter how they trained. This reminded me of that giant ski jumper thing they did at the ’06 Winter Games in Torino.

  • http://www.dohtem.com Greg Method

    Very entertaining…does anyone have an idea how many people were in that group?

  • Steve Belfer

    That kind of reminds me of this video from way back..

    http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=6616479032362244465

  • joris
  • http://www.artsenal.blogspot.com Armen

    This thing was truly a spectacle! Maybe a bit long but still awesome!!!

  • Robert

    This is truely the best thing I’ve ever seen!

  • http://hannywanny.blogspot.com/ Hannah

    Samsung needs to give all of them a raise for that

  • Jonathan G.

    In the U.S., they’d have cut to commercials.

    I once went to the Rose Bowl when my alma mater played. The halftime show was this amazing performance art piece with marching bands. You’d never see that on TV. The show was far better than insipid American football. And certainly better than the national anthem the TV nets feel obligated to include.

  • http://palais.wikidot.com Jordan S.

    I remember that “Thinkin’ Things Collection 3″ had a “game” of sorts which let one orchestrate a half-time show, not like this but maybe somewhat like the one which Jonathan G. saw. And embarrassing as it is, I find myself enjoying the the extremely cheesy music, and that last English-language song most of all. But the blond cheerleaders are wrong to the point of disturbing. Is South Korean the same nation which built that entirely pink department store which collapsed? That was probably somewhere in Southeast Asia, but it would almost make sense.

  • Bugsmer

    Beautiful. Just think of what amazing display we could make from the moon. I certainly hope that their hard work has been rewarded.

  • Chris Sobieniak

    >In the U.S., they’d have cut to commercials.
    >
    I once went to the Rose Bowl when my alma mater played. The halftime show was this amazing performance art piece with marching bands. You’d never see that on TV. The show was far better than insipid American football. And certainly better than the national anthem the TV nets feel obligated to include.

    Makes me think of an old ABC promo from some years ago pimping Monday Night Football, where they had to make a comparison between the way the Japanese spend their Monday nights to what we Americans can see on TV that night, in this case, a variety/musical program. I think I would take the variety show on Fuji TV more than another lousy football game! Really, there’s no real talent seen on prime time anymore.

  • RODAN

    Hmmmm..let me see…

    Step one, hire a choreographer. then a designer, various graphic artists… a few thousand inbetweeners to hold the cards jump up and down run around…(you know the usual)

    A few rounds of ammo and threaten to either shoot them or send them north..and they will do Cinder F’n rella without complaints…

    No problem!

  • ms jane d’oh

    i hope they got paid OT. lol.

  • Allison

    “”I was in our high school marching band that was over 300 people and I can tell you that for almost 6 months solid, twice a week we would practice, rain or shine, in the florida heat so I can truly appreciate this on a human endurance level as well as an animation level. I can also say that since I was in marching band I would do almost anything to be a part of something like this again!! DANG! That was IMPRESSIVE! What do you say we get together this weekend and try and whip something up for the Superbowl next year?!”"

    “”Every marching band in the world has just been pwned by Samsung employees.”"

    Also having been in marching band I have a couple of things to point out. First of all, I am amazed! This was done exquisitely! I am very impressed with the whole performance.

    It probably did take them a couple months. I can believe less depending on how often they were able to get together.

    I do want to point out a couple things in defense of marching bands. In marching bands you are not only performing as one of the parts in a visual presentation, you are also a musician. They provide their own soundtrack as well which complicates things a lot more. This clip is about the average time for a marching band show (usually 7-10 minutes.) and in many cases they don’t have artists choreographing their show.

    Still amazing

  • Doj

    am tongue-tied… and/or tongue twisted !

  • yujin

    im a south korean myself..hehe

    ive seen similar stuff during the world cup, but ive never seen this one. truly amazing…haha you’d need a lot of patient, agreeable people for that. lol