Animation and soundtrack that I made

Discussion in 'Artist Spotlight' started by Seance, Oct 28, 2014.


  1. Seance

    Seance Member

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    Here is a 20-minute animation project that I put together.
    I recently finished putting together the soundtrack.

    The painting and shooting took place over 17 days from May to September 2013.
    The images were created with spray paint and paint rollers. I started
    using an old digital video camera, but that died on the first day of
    shooting. So the rest of the footage was shot on a Nikon D80 that
    I borrowed and some shots were taken with a Fujifilm Finepix point-and-shoot.

    The audio was recorded on my computer. There is a track with acoustic
    guitar and one with clean electric guitar as well as several layers of guitar
    played through the Basic Audio Gnarly. For the title sequence I used a
    Dunlop EJ Fuzz Face and an Ibanez DDL-10 Digital Delay II. I also
    used various reverb and echo plug-ins.

    There are a few segments where the "percussion" is from me recording
    myself spraying, shaking, rattling and tapping on a can of spray paint.
    There are also a few tracks of simple MIDI keyboard drones and a handful
    of sound effects (bicycle wheel spinning, cars rushing by on wet pavement).

    I spent most of last winter editing the footage and I only finalized the
    soundtrack this week.

    The video looks best when viewed at the highest resolution setting (1080p).

     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2017
  2. splatt

    splatt david torn / splattercell Gold Supporting Member

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    i dig this!
    well done.
     
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  3. Seance

    Seance Member

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    Thanks, David! I appreciate the kind words.
     
  4. DBBlues

    DBBlues Formerly fullertone Gold Supporting Member

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    Fantastic video and music that matched wonderfully. It leads me to want to look for old walls ...
     
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  5. Seance

    Seance Member

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    Thanks, fullertone!
     
  6. Seance

    Seance Member

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    Here is a sand animation that I started while I was still working on the
    spray-paint animation that I posted above.

    For Wind Water Sand & Snow I returned to the same spot on the shores of
    Lake Ontario throughout different seasons. I created all the images and took
    all of the photos myself. I put the soundtrack together by improvising while
    watching the visuals.

    The animation looks best when viewed in 1080p.

     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2017
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  7. gigs

    gigs Member

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    Really like that. Great job.
     
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  8. Seance

    Seance Member

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    Thanks! It was a lot of fun (even in the winter).
     
  9. splatt

    splatt david torn / splattercell Gold Supporting Member

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    excellent, sean..... just lovely.
    thank you.
     
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  10. Seance

    Seance Member

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    Thank you for the kind words, David! I'm glad you liked it.

    Right after recording the audio for this I liked it. But the next day I hated it.
    But then I thought about how in the animation erasure creates new patterns.

    So I went through the audio and just deleted things that made me cringe.
    Then I spaced out the tracks a bit in the stereo field. And although it
    isn't perfect, I think the imperfections in the audio now match up with
    the imperfections in the visuals to create a new cohesion.

    The most exciting part is thinking about new areas in which to apply
    some of these animation insights (erasure/pattern, the continuity of
    a specific site in flux over time, etc.).
     
  11. Seance

    Seance Member

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    My newest animation, More From Form, is screening at the 38th annual Big Muddy Film Festival later this February.
    So if you're in Carbondale, Illinois, you can see it in person. Here is the full list of other films:
    http://bigmuddyfilm.com/?p=10985

    Like with my other animations, More From Form explores abstract patterns and the repetition of visual and musical
    motifs. I recorded the soundtrack myself, and hopefully I'll have opportunities to screen this animation and play
    live improvised music to accompany it. I haven't uploaded the video to places like YouTube or Vimeo yet.
    So for the time being all I can do is share some stills from the animation.

    I created the imagery by painting old 16mm filmstrip with inks and then scratching off the emulsion with sharp
    tools, such as a sewing needle, an awl, and a knife for carving soapstone.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2017
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  12. BluesForDan

    BluesForDan Supporting Member

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    I haven't watched the others yet, I ran out of coffee during the first one, my only complaint :D

    First of all, wow. I mean, holy freaking **** WOW. You did THAT much painting in only 17 days? I'm surprised the turf around the building didn't ignite from the friction of your feet. Second, the choice of media. I really dug this because I loved the procession of the shadows. I'm really big on solar position changes through the seasons and I see subtle things that probably get missed by most. For instance, some of the static images of the whole wall were different enough that I thought there was a second wall being used but I couldn't tell why. Then the shots around the 7:30 mark showing adjacent walls being muralized. This blew my mind. The thing that I feel separates artists from wannabes is their ability to see the big picture, in my opinion.

    How were you able to line up the mortar of the bricks so neatly? I'm not up on image manipulation digitally so maybe there is a way to slide the image around as if you had a transparency in front of you on a glass viewer so you can keep the bricks aligned. That takes dedication, another tribute of an artist. Plus I think you have revealed how some psychedelic images were made back in the day with the close up 'textured' shots of the painted bricks.

    Finally, the sound track. Do not fret (no pun intended), it was outstanding. If I may be so bold (as well as showing my age) I was hearing elements of The Who (think Live at Leeds), The Grateful Dead, The Doors, Pink Floyd. I hope I'm not offending you or anyone else by my saying that. I think the synchronization of sound and visual elements was incredibly well done. Dude, I sat through the whole thing, I didn't even pause it to go refill my coffee. I didn't want to break the spell.

    Looking forward to seeing the rest. Thanks for posting this.
     
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  13. Seance

    Seance Member

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    Thanks for the kind words! I'm glad you liked it. My only wish is that I had a better tripod or a camera
    with a better remote. I was borrowing a Nikon D80 and initially I didn't even have a remote to take the
    pictures, so there is more shake in there than I'd like. Eventually I bought a remote, but it "goes to sleep"
    after a short time and you have to go back into the camera's menu to activate it, which means shaking
    the camera anyway. I liked how everything turned out, but in the future I'd like less camera shake.

    I'm glad you liked the environmental time shifts. I really enjoy juxtaposing that kind of thing against
    the tempo of the stuff I am animating. It helps indicate how much time goes into the process, and it
    is a form of "collaboration" that is really rewarding for me during and after the process of animating.

    So for most of the animation I just took digital stills intermittently while painting. But the extreme
    closeups of the mortar or different shapes were all compiled by going through the digital stills on my
    computer and just cropping in and creating a new photo from the old. I didn't use Photoshop, I just
    used the Preview program on my Mac and lined up by eye the shapes (mortar, circles, etc) by referring
    to the "resize" handles (the grey circles in this image below). Each "resized" image was 1920 x 1080
    pixels (instead of 330 x 330 as in the example below). Does that make sense?

    [​IMG]

    There are definitely more automated ways to animate things, but the simplicity of my procedure
    felt organic and enjoyable for me. So I would open original photos to find mortar or circles and
    then save the new re-cropped photos under a new name in a folder of like-minded images (mortar,
    circles, etc.) and then I'd recompile all these stills in iMovie to "animate" them. And additionally
    I'd also sometimes save an image in different orientations (flipped horizontal, flipped vertical) and
    use them one after the other so that when compiled in the animation the images seemed to spin
    or pulse. The horizontal and vertical flipping also created that Rorschach-type effect.

    I really love abstract filmmakers like Oskar Fischinger, Harry Smith, Hy Hirsch, Len Lye, and Stan
    Brakhage. The work of Oskar Fischinger and Harry Smith had a lot to do with the "lightshows" in
    the '60s. And the direct-to-film films of Stan Brakhage explore how abstract images jammed
    together create a continuity or through-line along which the viewer is transported.

    I'm glad you liked the soundtrack. I have listened to all those bands you mentioned, so all those
    influences are probably in there in some way shape or form. Thanks for checking out my animation.
     
  14. Seance

    Seance Member

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    If you like solar position changes, then you should watch the second animation posted above.
    After you have your coffee, of course.

    Wind Water Sand and Snow is even more of an environmental collaboration. The passage of
    time captures changes not only in the position of the sun, but the wind, the water, the way the
    water saturates the sand and then how the sand settles as the water evaporates and drains
    away. And of course I shot that over different seasons. So the changes are quite dramatic, even
    though sand and snow register as being very similar visually. And snow and water register
    as being very dissimilar visually, even though they are the same substance in different forms.
     
  15. Seance

    Seance Member

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    I made a direct-to-film animation called More From Form a while ago.
    But since then I've been tweaking the soundtrack and trying to arrive at
    a final version of the audio.

    Recently I was messing around with a phaser and a Montreal Assembly
    Count To Five pedal and trying to arrive at some parts that I could stitch
    together for the soundtrack.

    Here are some of the first test-runs I made.




    I haven't finalized anything. But imagine 24 images per second like the ones below
    being accompanying by a few different layers of audio similar to the clip above.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  16. Seance

    Seance Member

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    Here is the final version of the soundtrack for "More From Form":


    I haven't posted the animation online yet because I still haven't heard back from a few film festivals
    that I submitted the animation to. Hopefully I'll find out one way or the other pretty soon.

    I used the Basic Audio Gnarly Fuzz (@basicaudio ) and Montreal Assembly Count To 5 (@mtl.asm) pedal
    running into a Boss RE-20 with stereo outs going to computer for recording.
     
  17. Seance

    Seance Member

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    Well, here are the visuals for which this soundtrack was made.
    I tweaked the audio a bit for the final version.
     
  18. Seance

    Seance Member

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    Something coming soon.........
     
  19. Seance

    Seance Member

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    Here it is... I've been working on this animation for a while.

    I wanted to capture and translate the sonic footprint of Stamme[n]—a pedal made by David Rolo—into visuals. The pedal is sort of a glitchy looper with some freeze/hold capabilities. You can read
    more about it on David's website (http://www.davidrolo.com). Basically a guy on the I Love Fuzz
    forum came to David and outlined his ideal pedal and David thought about that and combined those
    ideas with his own and came up with the Stamme[n].

    So over time I moved objects (both big and small) around and made a soundtrack using the Stamme[n].

    The signal chain:

    Guitar --> Basic Audio Fuzz Mutant --> David Rolo Stamme[n] --> Boss RE-20 --> Zoom H5 recorder

     
  20. Seance

    Seance Member

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    Here is a new bit of audio that can play in a loop to accompany some old visuals that I made.

    Chain:
    Basic Audio Fuzz Mutant > Montreal Assembly Count To Five > Boss RE-20 > Lab Series L7

     

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