Cartoon Saloon and the Crafting of a Studio Identity in the Digital Era
AnimationStudies 2.0
by Eve Benhamou
1w ago
Image: Wolfwalkers, Tomm Moore and Ross Stewart, 2020. Since its creation in 1999, Kilkenny-based Cartoon Saloon has consistently stood out within the animation landscape, praised for its stories based on Irish folklore and showcasing a ‘painterly hand-drawn aesthetic’ (Rooney 2002). The studio’s first feature film, The Secret of Kells (Moore and Twomey 2009), was released at the end of what Sam Summers terms the ‘computer-animated feature’s formative decade’ (2020: 1). This article examines Cartoon Saloon’s self-representation in relation to contemporary animation aesthetics and techniques. D ..read more
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A Collective Effort: Irish Animation Studios
AnimationStudies 2.0
by Yvonne Hennessy
2w ago
Ireland’s animation studios have emerged as a significant force in the global market, harnessing their unique position as the sole English-speaking country in the European Union and strategically leveraging funding partnerships because of their geographical positioning between both American and European sources.  Over the past two decades, animation in Ireland has undergone a remarkable transformation, garnering consistent international recognition and establishing itself as a powerhouse in the global animation landscape (Screen Ireland 2023). Prior to the early 2000’s, numerous attempts ..read more
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Review: Pulses of Abstraction: Episodes from a History of Animation (2020), Andrew R. Johnston
AnimationStudies 2.0
by Andrew Connor
2w ago
In Pulses of Abstraction: Episodes from a History of Animation, Andrew R. Johnston contends that animation has been ‘pulsing in fits and starts with the creation, distribution and experimentation of new technologies’ (Johnston: 2024, p. 3). He sets out to explore the impact that technology has had on animation, concentrating on a specific area – abstract animation, through examining works by leading animators whose aesthetics and underlying philosophies can be examined in comparison to their exploitation of the technologies at their disposal. Johnston’s chapters theme the investigations by a k ..read more
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The birth of Spanish animation studios and their settlement during the Franco’s dictatorship
AnimationStudies 2.0
by Maria Pagès Rovira
3w ago
Despite a common belief, the industrialization of Spanish animation studios took place only a decade later than in the United States. However, the first experiences happened at the beginning of the 20th century. We can claim that Segundo de Chomón was among the first filmmakers to set up an animation studio in Spain. There, he did intertitles, coloring and tricks for Pathé Frères and Méliès’ Star Films. His first main works were trick films (El hotel eléctrico) of French production, although he tried to start up several studios in Barcelona in 1901 and 1910 (Batllori, 2009).  The next pos ..read more
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The hidden nature of the puppet film as a collective work: the Polish ‘Se-Ma-For’ Studio of Small Film Forms
AnimationStudies 2.0
by Ewa Ciszewska and Agata Hofelmajer-Roś
3w ago
Puppet films are often described as the work of a single author. The focus on the puppet featured in the film helps reveal the puppet filmmaking’s collaborative nature. A study on the collective mode of puppet filmmaking will be presented using examples of films from the ‘Se-Ma-For’ Studio of Small Film Forms in Łódź (1947-1999), an animation studio that produced the largest number of puppet films in Poland. The nature of puppet production best defines the profile of the studio, the character of the labour and the principles of matching in the creative teams. The Se-Ma-For’s puppet production ..read more
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How the Valley Became International: Animation Labor Divisions in Moomin TV Productions
AnimationStudies 2.0
by Roosa Hirvela
1M ago
Many animation productions are international efforts, though the creative control often comes from studios in the US or Europe, while the studios in Asia end up performing the actual animation work. I will explore how the creative control in animation productions resides within the studios or license holder, while the technical labor is done elsewhere. This model has been upheld for years. As an example, this article will look into two Moomin TV productions, one from the 1990s and one only recently aired and produced in 2019. Still from Moomin TV show Work in animation can be categorized by tw ..read more
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Hidden In Plain Sight: Aardman’s American Dream
AnimationStudies 2.0
by Markus Beeken
1M ago
While the trademark thumbprint pressed into Gromit’s snout is the archetypal giveaway of British animation studio Aardman’s distinct material style, I was always more preoccupied by a splodge of jam. In several scenes of The Wrong Trousers (Nick Park, 1993), hapless inventor Wallace uses a typically convoluted contraption to fling globs of viscous red jam at dainty slices of white bread. The thick, brightly coloured splatters are an effective marker of Aardman’s meticulously formulated aesthetic because they take something familiar and render it in the tactile medium of stop-motion animation ..read more
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The Floating Horizon and Animated Disorientation
AnimationStudies 2.0
by Alla Gadassik
2M ago
The horizon line is a key visual principle of the Western world-view, binding together histories of navigation, spatial representation, and philosophical inquiry. Ancient mariners valued the horizon as an orienting boundary between the earthly and the celestial, scanning perpendicularly across an open field of vision to locate points of danger or solid ground. Renaissance architects projected that boundary onto the visual field of a canvas, drafting a straight horizon line to anchor an observer in pictorial space by coordinating converging planes around vanishing points, rendering a “here” and ..read more
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Animating the surface of the screen and the body
AnimationStudies 2.0
by Sharon Young
3M ago
Animation goes, in all its superficiality, deeply into the substance of being, the hidden realms, the crevices beneath usual exposure, the constructions and reconstructions. […] Film is the unknowing suspension of disbelief in stand-­ins, doppelgangers, avatars, things that only pretend to be real, full-­ blooded, breathing, but are in fact chemical confections, celluloid compositions. Esther Leslie, 2014, p. 27-28. Watch Your Lip! originated as a text performed to self At home In lockdown In isolation I set up my camera on a tripod Got nice and close and spoke into the surface of the lens A ..read more
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Review: Figure and Force in Animation Aesthetics (2019), Ryan Pierson
AnimationStudies 2.0
by Colin Wheeler
3M ago
Writing about the way elements move in animation proves to be a formidable challenge for any book on the medium, but Ryan Pierson’s Figure and Force in Animation Aesthetics (2019) manages to explore philosophical theories related to change while providing a rich description of two-dimensional films from the mid-twentieth century.  Pierson acknowledges this difficulty by providing a companion website, which features videos that analyze key sequences explored in each chapter. One can also access the first chapter as an audiobook read by the author. If following the descriptions proves a c ..read more
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