Tag Archives | Animation

Character rigs, comic books, and fan art

Character rigging is the process of adding joints, musculature and other anatomy to a character model, and facilitating the control of these through handles or controllers for the animator. In short, think of making a puppet in a 3D software. The process involves not just sculpting a model for the character, but also making it ‘animatable’ for the animator to be able to use it to create poses. Without this ‘animatability’ the model is a simple, dead, expressionless sculpture. This complex process of rigging comprises of, but isn’t limited to understanding the anatomy of the character in question, knowing the workflow of the animator, and applying this information within the realms of the software to create a character rig.

Animation by Nick Whitmire:

And hence, transpires the world of forward and inverse kinematics, deformation and transformation and other such techno-babble, mumbo-jumbo. Surely, some of us understand this pretty well. But for a normal, every-day animator, this could be pretty intimidating, and it is!… Read the rest
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Newly Digitized ‘Phenakistoscope’ Animations


Richard Balzer is an early optical device collector, with collections ranging “from camera obscuras and praxinoscopes to anamorphic mirrors and zoetropes.” He’s also amassed quite an interesting collection of phenakistoscopes, early animation devices “that used the persistence of vision principle to create an illusion of motion.”

Balzer and his assistant, Brian Duffy, have digitized these morbidly surreal animation relics.

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Bill Murray on Being Obnoxious

“I’m just an obnoxious guy who can make it appear charming, that’s what they pay me to do.”
— Bill Murray in October 1988

T.J. English was tasked with writing a profile of Bill Murray for Irish America magazine. This was around the time Scrooged came out. So he headed out to Murray’s house in New Jersey. The guys sat down and the tape recorder was turned on. Murray’s dog ran about and wreaked a little havoc.

Murray cracked wise on giving back to his mom when he made it big, hijinks on the set of Ghostbusters, the spiritual change that saved him from destruction, and how fame sort of helps with talking to women.

Hear more outtakes from this unheard interview: http://blankonblank.org/bill-murray

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A Short Vision (1956)

This short animated film is Peter and Joan Foldes’ second and last film together. Its bleak subject – the end of the world caused by a nuclear apocalypse – reflects a widespread preoccupation in 50s Britain which would soon lead to the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND). The film is composed mostly of still drawings, creating a terrifying effect amplified by a sombre commentary spoken in the style of the Bible. The film had a very strong impact on audiences, in particular across the Atlantic, where it was shown on primetime television to millions of American viewers and reportedly produced one of the biggest reactions since Orson Welles’ ‘War of the Worlds’ broadcast in 1938. (Christophe Dupin)

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Infinite Lust

Another gorgeous video from animator Emanuele Kabu.

These are all places we’ve been together.

With our bodies, or with my mind.

Some I saw with my eyes closed,
And some with both our eyes, either open or closed.

They are memories of lovemaking, planning, projecting.

You were there, but maybe we were never really there.

In those places, and in my mind. In those places in my mind.

I made this video to free some space.
To move those places out of my mind.

I had to put them down.

Over four months and thousands of hours of drawing,
Here are fifteen years of sweetness and lust.

And a bit of pain.

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A stop-motion animated dream allegory.

This was submitted to us by a reader. It’s an interesting short, if albeit a little clunky. Some of the stop-motion isn’t as clean as it could be, but it’s interesting nonetheless. I caught what I suspect are references to Un Chien Andalou, Lynch’s Rabbits, and possibly The Metamorphosis.

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Hunter S. Thompson on Outlaws

“I keep my mouth shut now. I’ve turned into a professional coward.”
— Hunter S. Thompson in 1967

In the 1960s, Hunter S. Thompson spent more than a year living and drinking with members of the Hell’s Angels motorcycle club, riding up and down the California coast. What he saw alongside this group of renegades on Harley’s, these hairy outlaws who rampaged and faced charges of attempted murder, assault and battery, and destruction of property along the way–all of this became the heart of Thompson’s first book: Hell’s Angels: A Strange and Terrible Saga. Shortly after the book came out, Thompson sat down for a radio interview with the one and only Studs Terkel.


“I can’t remember ever winning a fight.”

“I used to take it out at night on the Coast Highway, just drunk out of my mind, ride it for 20 and 30 miles in just short pants and a t-shirt.… Read the rest

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