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January 2006

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* Is this crap?.... Live Freaky! Die Freaky! What do you think? Perhaps, if beginners "starting" in Stop Motion or if children had done the animation, "maybe" okay. However, for sort-of, kind-of quasi-mainstream animation work .... this further contributes to the perception by the public, that Stop Motion is crude & inferior ..... but yet the Freaky people have a kind-of, slick online marketing campaign. To me "hype-ness" all vaporous hype. You will realize the when you see thetheir website .... "one" trailer clip of the animation at the clip and their site is uses Flash format .... www.livefreakydiefreaky.com Hmmmm ..... second thoughts now .... maybe this is just weird artsy fartsy and it isn't even close to mainstream ..... so most of public will not see it Edit 02..04.06

* This is maybe "so-so" .... Hoodwinked .... An all CGI animation, theatrically released. In their press releases and statements, they seem to be riding on the coattails of Stop Motion ..... kind-of stealing or blurring the true defintion of our animation art/craft and perhaps making it more confusing to the public. I am not panning the movie (I have not seen it) but only judging from the trailer clips posted in this article ... Filmmaker Sees, Well, Red, With 'Hoodwinked' .... Read it and you will see the Stop Mo connection. You tell me .... Does it look like Stop Motion? Not to me .... zero similarity compared to the tactile realness of real puppets, sets & props and obvious that it is a synthesized CGI product.

* This seems to be good .... Davie and Golimyr .... I think they even posted about a year ago at the StopMotion forum looking to hire people. Real Stop Motion ..... I'm not sure if it uses some clay animation .... but very clean work ..... it seems to have reasonably good production values. Here is QT trailer clip (7mb). At Lumenas Studios website (producers of D&G) and their press releases, they are saying the best of both worlds ..... traditional Stop Mo combined with CGI backgrounds/scenery and other added special effects & tweaking ..... and I agree that is the way to generally go .... for the 21st century .... digitally Turbo Charged Stop Mo.

* Pursue your "passion", but keep your "day job" ..... Still occupied here but almost done in clearing my life of some busy-ness and other unforseen things. Shortly, will start blogging, what I will be up to. All these years, I have always done Stop Motion puppet armature fabrication small side jobs for others but lacked the motivation or creative energy to actually pursue my own stuff. I cannot explain these brain funks. The Entertainment/Arts biz in general, is not "secure", fiercly competitive, lots of rejection, and can be clique'ish. Only those with extraordinary perserverance & passion pursue it, no matter what, but they might make personal and other sacrifices elsewhere for the sake of their passion. I would have been financially broke if I did not have a bread & butter straight regular job that pays the monthly rent & bills and also provides medical benefits. For me, there has never been any "regularity" with just doing armatures. It is way too specialized and that is my fault for not branching out or focusing more on other aspects of animation production. Fortunately, through the years, I have done lots of research, info gathering, and I am very observant & learn fast ..... have done tests here & there in other aspects of Stop Motion .... where I feel confident I can do much of it myself. Also .... the timing seems right, with all the cost effective software tools now available. I am pursuing Stop Motion with perhaps a realistic goal & attitude and doing it for mostly creative personal pleasure now. If anything positive "extra" happens ..... then that is just more icing on the cake. Perhaps .... finally .... my hard earned self-taught armaturing expertise will benefit me personally for some of my own projects, experiments, etc.. By the will of the Gods .... "The Return of LIO" or "LIO Reborn" .... be afraid .... be verrry afraid

* Slight change to SMW home page ..... it was done about a month ago, about the same time as the rotating banners that you may have noticed at the top of this news/blog page. If you are not an efficient web surfer-lurker .... well .... what can I say? It's your loss if you don't stay on top of it . I won't say what the change is but if you are a proficient regular web wanderer/visitor, it should be noticable.

* Stop Mo rumblings in Portland, Oregon USA? ..... That's the buzz I have been recently hearing. You already know about the somewhat well known animation studio in that city. This subject-topic has been mentioned before here at SMW Blog and also at the SMA message boards. Apparently, "it" has been given the green light as a Stop Motion feature film project. I have other minor details about it, but at this time, I cannot say anymore.

* King Kong 2005 .... I finally saw it ..... I was able to squeeze some spare moment in my schedule to catch it on the big screen (before it goes to DVD). I have a feeling, the masses are maybe afflicted with ADD ... all are so immersed in their bread & circuses diversionary toys and have no discipline to focus, be patient, and savor. Understandable .... brainwashing saturation by the mainstream media onslaught & marketing, conditioning everyone into this behavorial syndrome. Whoaa ... almost going off topic. I mention ADD because Peter Jackon's Kong did not feel too long for me. Many have whined and complained that Kong was too lengthy at 3 hours. I was absorbed in the movie and it felt like a great escape. The casting of Jack Black & Adrien Brody were perhaps, so-so choices but they kind-of worked "somewhat". Namoi Watts .... perfect as Ann Darrow I still stand by my original comments link 1 link 2 link 3 about some of the, perhaps ridiculous scenarios with the CG Animation/Special Effects. The Bronto stampede .... too over the top and miracuously, the humans surviving that. Same applies to the Vine Scene .... not quite believable .... and the pit scene too, with the plethora of nasty pit creatures and we have to further suspend our belief that the crew could have survived that. In spite of all this though, I still enjoyed King Kong. From a marketing POV, as I commented before .... the "suits" should have maybe first released a shorter Kong version for the ADD masses, and saved the longer version for DVD release.

* Hype: “Stop-Motion Exhumation” ..... A topic-thread at the Comics Journal Forum

* Motion Capture Propaganda ..... It has been awhile ..... I have not been around since last year . Still here, there, everywhere and occupied. Also, temporarily kind-of escaping from civilization. Back to topic ...... I just read an online article promoting motion capture as the manna from heaven, panacea miracle tool for "animation". Author of articles says he has been in animation for thirty years. A quote from his 4 page MoCap infomercial .... "Is it animation? Absolutely it is! Would I work with motion capture again? Absolutely! This is a process that is now just reaching its potential and continues to reveal new possibilities". I say .... what a bunch of mind twisting bull crap! Motion Capture is the copying-recording of REAL TIME, LIVE ACTION MOTION. It is a very high-techy equivalent to traditional Rotoscoping methods .... the tracing/copying of live-action motion used sometimes with 2D animation (cartoons).You can read his sales schpeel in detail .... Apes to Dragons: Jane & the Dragon (MoCap) . You read it? My observations & commonsense says ..... Motion Capture IS NOT "Animation". Here is the best and clear definition of "Animation" in this other AWN article by Gene Deitch, written some years ago .... Animation - What The Heck Is It? I have nothing against Motion Capture itself .... BUT .... just DO NOT STEAL the definition of "ANIMATION" from us. Get your own NEW description for your very pricey hi-techy toy .... like MoCap Acti-mation, Live Action Perfomance Capture, or whatever you want to call it .... but again .... do not call it Animation ..... because it ain't ! Edit 01.08.06

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