Wednesday, May 26, 2004

Congo Jazz


Aww Bosko.
He's not so improvised but "Congo Jazz" is one of those old animations that slips and loops to the music so wonderfully that I had to expell some kind of excitement into this blog.
(I'll have to come back and insert contextualizing linkages later.)

I watched some animation by Bruce Bickford the other day.
Baby Snakes, a documentary on the making of a film clip by Frank Zappa.
I have never seen anything like it! Incredible claymation.

Which, in the context of roping in my explorations so as to fit them into my paper, brings me to the genre of animation in Film Clips.
At the moment I won't delve as it seems I've not come across too much written documentation as yet on the subject.
Though I do have some selected snippets of animated filmclips stored (somewhere) in my memory. I'll just hum them to myself later on...

Speaking of memory.
Marcus sent me an interesting quote. I can't remember where I put it.
Ohwell. Next time.

Wednesday, May 19, 2004

Strands that link to my spiraling thoughts.

Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi'

Spiraling in or out? Up or down?
I am giddy.

Whoops I think I just Haiku'd.
An interesting article.
Novelist Michael Ondaatje and film editor Walter Murch talk Coppola, Lucas and the problems that make the movies.


Plus another:
Bruce Petty



Tuesday, May 11, 2004


I was thinking about Scott McCloud's book "Understanding Comics" the other day.
I quite like the chapter "The Six Steps". Its a good breakdown of the comic making process.
Or a structured template within which to analyse a piece of work.
A comic. An animation. Other stuff.

Spent alot of time looking at the Art Spiegelman (comics artist. Maus) exhibition today.
It is really interesting to see his work process and to hear him talk
about it. (There is a cdROM plus a great documentary vid on display
as a part of the exhibition.
Lots of 'arty' close-ups of his nose.)

Still thinking about the content of improvised animations.
The purpose.
Watched a whole lot of Marv Newland (+other folk, will insert names and other info later) animations.
They are quite silly and lovely.
Watched some Norman McLaren.
More thoughts later.
There is a little monster breathing down my neck and I have to get off this computer!

Thursday, May 06, 2004

How does the content reflect the process?

So in regards to my last blog entry, what I've found is an animator (W.K.) who illustrates my point.
Sifting through various books I've discovered many more animators who work in this way, or did
at some point in their career. Often, because its not a particularly lucrative way of working, many of these
animators put this process aside and continued their careers in more economically viable fashion. ie: advertising or more mainstream ventures.
Which brings me to afew questions.
Does the content of the work have to be of a certain nature to sustain this particular proccess?

There is a Bruce Petty quote somewhere that touches upon this.....
must find it.

Bruce Petty
William Kentridge
Phil Mulloy
Jan Svankmejer

Why would one improvise?

Should I also be investigating straight ahead techniques such as paint on glass, sand on glass and claymation.
I am thinking about Svankmejer at the moment, and the way he animates objects. He evokes such a sensual notion of the particular object being animated. In many animations, sound can complete the animation. Often good sound design will enhance the animation. I think with Svankmejer, the sound is maticulously designed, it enhances the animation most definately, though each evoke the sensibilities of the object equally. Neither covering up the other's imperfections.
might re-word that a bit later.

oop its time to meet the other aimsters.

Wednesday, May 05, 2004


Mild thoughts about definitions occur to me as I read about Shamus Culhane's discovery of improvisation within his own working methods.
His banter, which is essentially about creating "flow" , relates to the look and feel of the character being animated. He talks about feeling everything that the character being drawn feels. ( I'll extrapolate on this later). Perhaps, because this is quite a personal and somewhat special experience, many animators prefer not to talk about this indepth. Why analyse it? It seems a little twee to pin simpleton words to such an experience.
However, to get to the/a point, I think that this kind of "flow" is only a part of this idea of improvisation in animation that I am talking of. The flow can be utilized as a part of the production method to create a narrative. This method is what Kentridge uses. Perhaps every animator either works this way intuitively at some point, or plays around with this process.

What I'm trying to do here is pinpoint my initial idea/concept/question. With words.
That make sense.

(what I discover when I re-read this blog is that I've written a mere skeleton of the ideas that I am
thinking of and that they don't quite say all that is on my mind, pff which is fine. It's a blog.)

Watched Creature Comforts last night. One thing that struck me as I watched was how wonderful and varied all of the accents in the UK are, and how more often than not most of the British media we experience tends to have actors speaking in a, perhaps one could say.., a rather well-to-do fashion.
Is this true?
...more thoughts here, plus afew stories, but I best go and read more.
Don't want to fail now do I.

Saturday, May 01, 2004

Fun with Ponce

Ponce was the first (flash) drawn animation I did.
There was an awful lot of planning and designing in regard to his linear or narrative direction.
However, and probably quite obviously, I really didn't plan his facial/bodily expression...I just knew what
kind of dog he was. What I'm trying to say is, there are many parts in the animation that are improvised.
I think I've got more to say about this at some point......

Am I still just talking about straight ahead animation?