Animation Research

Development, Local Universe, Projects, Visual Research

Our new brief for the Local Universe studio is one I’m not very confident about. It focuses on moving image and how we can use this as well as digital processes to tell as story. I’ve never made an animation before and where the brief says it must be based on an existing story, I can see myself really struggling with this. However we were shown some examples, in the studio, of story telling through animation which was helpful in letting us see how a narrative works and the many ways they can be successful or not.

One of the first examples was La Jetee by Chris Marker. I really enjoyed watching this. I loved the fact that it was just a series of images and didn’t need to be animated with crazy complicated techniques but each frame was still close to the one before and after it, creating the really slow illusion of movement of time. The small pause on each image before the next allows room for the viewer to construct their own interpretation of what’s happening rather than explicitly illustrating it through film as though the audience were ignorant.

However, Looking at this second example, I was really captured by the different animation techniques used to make a mundane topic, such as Procrastination, fun!

The final example of animation we were shown was ‘The Man with Beautiful Eyes’ a poem originally written by Charles Bukowski but animated by Jonathan Hodgson with illustrations by Jonny Hannah. As a personal fan of Jonny Hannah’s work, I really liked this because of the way each frame had been painted but many other students in the room didn’t as they complained about how jumpy and distracting the technique made the animation. I felt as though it suited the sombre tone of the poem as intended and how smooth movements aren’t necessarily needed to create something atmospheric. What I especially liked with this animation was not the creation of narrative but the illustration of it, thus making me consider approaching the brief looking at works of literature perhaps.


Featured image: Still from ‘The Man With the Beautiful Eyes’ illustrated by Jonny Hannah


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