Sunday, September 23, 2012

O'Reilly & Funz

To call animator David O'Reilly's body of work unique is an understatement -- his style is unlike quite like anything else. He embodies an aesthetic that is simultaneously cutting edge and early 90s computer animation; all with a fucked up sense of humor. Describing his filmmaking process with Motionographer, O'Reilly said "I think if you create restrictions, even abstract ones, you’re brain will work harder to overcome them and be creative."

His 10-minute epic "Please Say Something" is a perfect example of this. It is a stripped down, futuristic love story between a cat and a mouse. The film is one of his more successful attempts at narrative:

Please Say Something from David OReilly on Vimeo.

And now for something completely different, also from O'Reilly:

He also does commercial work, believe it or not. Like these concert visuals for M.I.A.:

RyeRye / MIA "Bang" Visuals from David OReilly on Vimeo.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Crossover Cred

First talked about here on AA in 2009, Paul Robertson has been chugging along at what he does best -- 8-bit and 16-bit art and animation. He's had quite a bit of crossover success including this animation gig on the recent episode of Disney Channel's Gravity Falls:

Keep up with his latest inventions on his tumblr.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Show Me Your Valve

Valve, the company behind the Half-Life, Portal, and Team Fortress series of video games released their latest promo video for Team Fortress 2 -- amazing that's its still going considering the game was released in October of 2007. The original Team Fortress had a long shelf life too, not to mention games like Starcraft, but it is still a feat. Check out Meet the Pyro:

Valve always has bouncy, fun computer animation in their Team Fortress videos. This one is no exception. That said, Valve's engine is a bit dated by today's standards. That hasn't stopped Shane Acker, director of Focus Features' 9, from making a feature film in the format. The reasoning, I think, being that its much cheaper to use a free engine like that -- he's got a budget of $18.7 million. Check out the ambiguous trailer here:

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Next Generation Graphics: E3's Goodies

I can't say I was TERRIBLY impressed by the next-gen tech demos that came out of the Electronic Entertainment Expo this month, but I definitely favor Square's next engine over Epic's Unreal 4 engine, though they're just demos at this point. Here's Square's offering:

And Epic's:

The game with the most exciting graphics and star power, clearly, is the new RPG coming from the makers of Fallout: New Vegas...:

South Park fans everywhere rejoice!

This actually looks like it'll do South Park justice after that awful trio of games released for N64 shortly after the show had started. This was the worst of the three, acting mostly as a Turok: Dinosaur Hunter clone:

Thursday, June 7, 2012

To the Moon and Back: Indie Gaming

Following indie gaming is a recent passion of mine and I find there's some really creative work being done in this field -- story, art, and animation wise. A really affecting game came out late last year and became a critical favorite for its story and style. Some complained about the gameplay aspect and the shortness of the game itself, but it has clearly had an impact. Check out the release trailer for To the Moon:

The designer of the game, Kan Gao, explained that his goal for To the Moon is "to have you play it, watch the ending, and say ‘Wow, that was f-cking satisfying — may I have another?" What a great goal for ANY creative project. The music by Gao himself and composer Laura Shigihara is lush and fantastic for an indie game (or any game) --

I'd love to see what Gao can do with a bit more money. He's already winning "Best Story" awards against titans like Portal 2 and Catherine.

One of the two main designers on To the Moon, Alisa Christopher, is working on a new game series now -- Dr. McNinja's Radical Adventures. Here's some background art she's been developing for that:

You can also see more of her work here.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Matt Ward

While I'm not wild about his music after he hooked up with Zooey Deschanel, this song from M. Ward's latest album "A Wasteland Companion" is pleasant enough and its got a cute music video to boot. There's some real neat design going on here.

The director, Joel Trussell, also did this rad commercial for the video game I'm currently trying to get through -- Assassin's Creed: Revelations. Saturday morning Assassin's Creed cartoon anyone?

Monday, May 28, 2012

Kickstartin' Mad God

I was worried that Phil Tippett's rekindled interest in his old stop motion film "Mad God" would go the way of so many other lost projects -- silently into the night. Luckily, it looks like he's more excited about it than ever. He's asking for donations to complete the project and offering up all kinds of goodies depending on the tier you're donating at. He's already got twice the amount he's asked for ($80K+ as of May 28th). Check out what they're offering here. There's a healthy dose of oddities and enthusiasm in their fundraising video, though some of it strays a little too close to the behind-the-scenes of Peter Jackson's King Kong stop motion recreation, saying "nobody does this anymore" in reference to stop motion. Of course, you know I disagree, but it is certainly a return to stop motion for Tippett after years of working in the computer generated effects industry. Check out the (for me, fun!) level of tedium they're getting into on the set:

They're certainly taking their time and I can't wait to see what they've got when it's all said and done.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

The Kimchi Warrior!

Kimchi, without a doubt, is one of my favorite foods. Imagine my surprise when I stumbled upon an animated SERIES about the health benefits of kimchi and the ancient war behind it. It's bizarre and feels almost like propaganda -- and the animation is a little more than rough, but its got a certain charm. Here's the first episode:

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Welcome to Night Island

Doesn't look like the short is up in its entirety at the moment, but Salvador Maldonado's Night Island was shortlisted for the Academy Awards for Best Animated Short. It didn't make the final cut, but from the following clip and the Swigly poll that ranked it second among the shortlisted films only behind David O'Reilly's sublime The External World, it looks to be something special: