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Mc1week8 09



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Mc1week8 09

  1. 1. Media Cultures 1 ‘Real Worlds of Animation’ Week 8 Tracey Meziane Benson
  2. 2. To explore animation in the context of 3 issues <ul><li>Realism effects in animation </li></ul><ul><li>The distinctions that we make between fiction and non-fiction in screen media </li></ul><ul><li>How we can tell stories through animation </li></ul><ul><li>eg. Waltz With Bashir (2008) </li></ul>
  3. 3. Some animations to consider
  4. 4. Other examples: <ul><li>The Nightmare Before Christmas (Tim Burton,1993) </li></ul><ul><li>Big Buck Bunny (Blender 2007) </li></ul><ul><li>Howl’s Moving Castle (Miyazaki Hayao, 2004) </li></ul><ul><li>Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within (Hironobu Sakaguchi, 2001) </li></ul>
  5. 5. Cinematic Animation <ul><li>DRAWING & PAINTING IN 2 DIMENSIONS </li></ul><ul><li>traditional cel animation – frame by frame </li></ul><ul><li>Drawing into the computer and animating via software programs </li></ul><ul><li>Compositing </li></ul><ul><li>Rotoscoping </li></ul><ul><li>SCULPTING IN 3 DIMENSIONS </li></ul><ul><li>Stop-action: claymation, puppets, frame by frame </li></ul><ul><li>Computer generated (CG) animation </li></ul><ul><li>CG Figural Morphing </li></ul>
  6. 6. Digital Compositing <ul><li>Operates new process of ‘super-imposition’ in editing film. This process is a layering of many digitalised images in the creation of a ‘shot’ – a sequence of images created through a single camera ‘set-up’. It involves matching a real camera’s position with a ‘virtual camera’s’ viewing position to create a high level of realism. The aim is usually to create effects which cannot be noticed. </li></ul>
  7. 7. ‘ Bullet Time’ – ‘timeslice technique’ <ul><li>A combination of new and old media techniques: green screens, wireframe computer simulations, an arc of still cameras, motion cameras, compositing … </li></ul>
  8. 8. Questions <ul><li>How do we understand animation as representation? </li></ul><ul><li>What is the relationship between animation and the real world. </li></ul><ul><li>Has this relationship changed with animations created via computer technologies? </li></ul><ul><li>What happens to the story when animation and human acted cinema combine? </li></ul>
  9. 9. Can we understand animation as Puppetry? <ul><li>A definition of puppetry in the context of computers? </li></ul><ul><li>‘ if the signification of life can be created by people, then the site of that signification is to be considered a puppet.’ </li></ul><ul><li>Tillis, Steve (1999). ‘The Art of Puppetry in the Age of Media Production’, The Drama Review , 43.3, 185. </li></ul>
  10. 10. Realism : what does it mean in the context of animation? <ul><li>We can define here ‘realism’ to mean the relationship between a representation of an object (through sound, image, movement) and how closely we think this representation evokes in us how the object exists for us in real life. </li></ul><ul><li>Are line drawings, stop action any less realistic then for us than CGI animation such as Final Fantasy, The Spirit Within ? </li></ul>
  11. 11. Have our ideas of realism changed with computer technologies? <ul><li>This is an open question still </li></ul><ul><li>Perceptual Realism : where we pretend for a while that the filmmakers really know what dinosaurs look like because they are contextualised in what looks like a representation of real space: </li></ul><ul><li>A ‘perceptually realistic image is one which structurally corresponds to the viewer’s audiovisual experience of three-dimensional space’ </li></ul><ul><li>Prince, Stephen (1996). ‘True Lies: Perceptual Realism, Digital Images and Film Theory’, Film Quarterly , 49:3, 32. </li></ul>
  12. 12. DV Realism - Manovich <ul><li>‘ I do believe that new media re-configures a moving image in a number of very important ways … the shift from montage to compositing; the slow historical transition from lens-based recording to 3-D image synthesis; the new identity of cinema as a hybrid of cinematography and animation.’ </li></ul><ul><li>Lev Manovich, ‘Reality Media’, 2001 </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
  13. 13. Virtual Puppets <ul><li>Animatronics </li></ul><ul><li>Stop Action </li></ul><ul><li>Scanning from models in real life to produce moving CGIs – Computer Generated Images: </li></ul><ul><li>- ‘the strings’ – articulation variables </li></ul><ul><li>- Kinematics – creating and saving gestures </li></ul><ul><li>- Motion capture </li></ul>
  14. 14. Vactors <ul><li>CG virtual actors meant to do the same theatrical, storytelling work as a human actor – often used in crowd scenes and in special effects via compositing </li></ul><ul><li>‘ In the coming era of digitized representation the crucial questions have less to do with reality than with communication’. </li></ul><ul><li>Creed, Barbara (2000). ‘The cyberstar: digital pleasures and the end of the Unconscious’, Screen , 41, Spring 2000, 83. </li></ul>
  15. 15. BUT can animation also be REAL? <ul><li>The boundaries between fiction and </li></ul><ul><li>non-fiction: </li></ul><ul><li>Can we record real life via animation? Eg. William Kentridge, Ari Folman, Richard Linklater </li></ul><ul><ul><li>What will come (Kentridge) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Waltz With Bashir (Folman) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Waking Life (Linklater) </li></ul></ul>
  16. 16. And William Kentridge <ul><li>‘ stone age animation’ </li></ul>