My latest way to waste time online is called YouTube. Apart from avoiding work by watching stupid pet tricks I have managed to find some great animation on there, so I can safely pass off at least some my time wasting as “research”. Qualifying as both a stupid pet trick AND funny animation is Dog Judo. To learn more about the canine martial arts, visit the Online Dojo.
The short that really inspired me to make this post is Burning Safari, a hilarious altercation between Monkeys and Robots. How can you go wrong with that concept? It is beautifully designed and animated and was made at the Gobelins school in France. I would love to know how that school consistantly produces such great animation at the student level. What’s their secret? There’s plenty more good stuff to see at the Gobelins Website.
Australian animator Bernard Derriman won a contest to make a video for the band TISM‘s song Everyone’s had more sex than me. Maybe you saw the resulting flash short when it was emailed around the world. Cold hard Flash interviewed him (here and here) about the video and his Shorts for Arj Barker. There are more of his shorts on His website.
Without the glorious internet I doubt that I ever would have discovered the the joys of the charming children’s TV show Pocoyo. The design and animation, both done in Spain, are really super. More can be learned about Pocoyo at the Pocoyo website.
One of my favourite designers, the mighty Nicolas Marlet, is the character designer on the upcoming (2008) Dreamworks film Kung-Fu Panda which is being directed by my dear chum mr John Stevenson. Right there you have two great reasons that I have high hopes for this film. Plus, bonus points for having Jack Black involved as the voice of the titular character. I am really looking forward to seeing an entire movie’s worth of Nicolas Marlet’s beautiful characters.
Another good friend of mine, Patrick Awa, has been working at Sprite Animation Studios designing characters on their Monster Samurai Project. It features a cool quirky design style that fuses traditional Japanese motifs with a Hong Kong Vinyl toy sensibility. For more of that whimsical fusion style check out their take on the classic Journey to the West legend (which is sometimes referred to as the legend of the Monkey King).
Last but not least is a piece by an animator by the name of Mike Adair, who recorded a whacky conversation with his infant son and then used it as the sound track for a flash cartoon. The result is called David’s New Snail.