Thursday, January 28, 2010

TAIS presents: A Weekend of Visual Music

This weekend we're featuring the improvised abstract animations of Jean Detheux. He'll be discussing his filmmaking process, the idea of 'visual music', and premiering his latest, 'Inemuri 2', along with a screening of his other works, a live performance and even a workshop! I've managed to track down a sample of his work on YouTube...'Jazz' 1 is an excerpt from a live performance in November '09.

You can also view tons of sample images and Quicktimes on M. Detheux's site.

The venue? Le Labo, in Toronto's groovy Distillery District. Le Labo is " a francophone media and integrated arts lab offering opportunities in production, training & showings." Come in out of the cold and check out this cool event. Thanks to our arts council partners and event hosts, and to M. Detheux for comin' out on a frosty weekend. Later!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

DVD toon bargoon

Just a quick note to let y'all know the Mission Hill DVD boxed set is on sale at the Best Buys for $14.99 in Canuck bucks. Directed by two ex-Simpsons helmers and designed by Lauren MacMullen, also a Simpsons director, this was a series that, like the Oblongs, never really got a chance to evolve in the glut of me-too adult animated series that were being produced at the time, with Warner's cancelling the series after airing just six episodes. All 13 episodes ran on Teletoon in 2000, and it had a pretty big following overseas. Great writing and some funny performances from Brian Posehn and Tom Kenny...and it's fourteen bucks. Go get a copy and enjoy. More to come.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Vintage CG

Browsing through the archives over at the Vintage CG page on YouTubes. Man, things has come a ways! Here's an example. Above, CGI composite shots (no audio, copyrighted musics, sorry) from the 1988 sci-fi series Captain Power.

And here, 'Defective', a short film from 2008 animated by one dude, VFS student Rani Naamani. Quite the evolution our tools have made, neh? A pencil remains a pencil, however, and Rani shows off some great traditional animation chops. Meanwhile, thank the dudes from ARCCA Animation (I think this is them) and other early poly-pioneers for paving the way for shlubs like me to whip up unwrap-mapped goodness on my desktop PC. Cheers! And check out the Vintage CG channel on YouTube for more lo-fi loco-mations. More to come!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

John K. being John K.

Back in the day, think 1994 or so, my college buddy Mike S. and I were tits-deep in the Algonquin College Animation/Television course. Mike was (and I believe still is) a huge Ren and Stimpy fan, and patterned a project he was workin' on after John K.'s style. He got a chance to talk to John, and the dude not only incouraged Mike, he took him and some other lucky so-n'-so's out to lunch, where he whipped out pad and paper and made Mike a mini-bible there on the spot. (Mike, if ya still got it...Jpegs, briddah!)

Apparently, John makes a habit o' this. In 1998 budding animator Amir Avni sent a letter to John, hoping for a few good words. What he got back was an 8-page mini-bible , an original drawing and a copy of one of Preston Blair's immortal animation 'how to' books. The dudes over at the 'Letters of Note' blog got wind, and Amir was nice enough to let 'em post the letter in full...nice!

I think young Amir found the attention inspiring...he's in his 4th year at Sheridan and apparently his stuff is the shizz-nizz. Now this is how you do...senior industry guys take note, if you want to improve the state of animation, inspire them young'uns!

Of course, John K. has been online and sharing his worldly wisdom for freakin' YEARS. His blog is a repository of all things toon, and contains a world of knowledge on drawing skills, layouts, boards, everything you could want. Go and check it out. Meanwhile, thanks to the dudes over at 'Letters of Note' and Digg dude Mr. BabyMan for bringin' this to me attention. Oh, and hey John, if yer readin' this, good on ya, bitch! By the way, just got the Mighty Mouse boxed set...I'll report in at week's end. Later!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

DVD sets is mighty-mighty!

Starting 2010 off right with the release of the cartoon which pretty much started the whole trend of director-based shows in North America. You'll remember the tale...dark lord of amination Ralph Bakshi sought to re-invent a classic. Some religious type got a hair up his ass about something, show cancelled. But, it got John K. off and running, and started the careers of a whole bunch of other good fellas who gave us a whole lot of good shows. Haven't seen many of these, so I'll be ordering up my copy tomorrow. Go and get you one. Thanks to Cartoon Brew for the heads up.

Also like to point out that Robot Chicken season 4 is out on DVD as of early last month! Some inspired craziness to be had here, and some great stop-mo courtesy of a new camera rig that can sweep through shots like a handicam...nice! Bonus is the 'Full-Assed' Christmas special, with what has to be the best animal character since Seth's giraffe, Comet the reindeer. Both sets on sale at Amazon, so go spend them gift cands. More to follow!