Week 14 Discussion Animation

Group A and Grad Students post thoughts on readings/film here.  All others are welcome to comment on posts.

23 thoughts on “Week 14 Discussion Animation

  1. Daniel Vincent

    Furniss’s writings on the rise of digital animation fascinate me, if only because it seems as though animators were attempting to get the most realistic results out of their work. This may be true, but seems like a misplaced ideal for commercial success.

    There’s, of course, an exception for those just attempting to supplement live action films with effects, but in the modern era, the most successful animated movies have a style to them.
    Pixar, DreamWorks, and Blue Sky are all mentioned as starting to try to get realism with their effects. One only needs to watch Tin Toy, Antz, or Ice Age to see why this is misguided, as they’re all quite ugly by today’s standards. Pixar moved to really stylizing their human looks with The Incredibles, and the other two followed (although Blue Sky has never really attempted to a human-based feature, except for The Peanuts Movie which is very stylized.) Meanwhile, films such as Mars Needs Moms or Beowulf bombed with the realistic motion-capture animation, to the point where we don’t see any films of that format release anymore.

    The closest we have to successful animated movies that aim for realism is the work of Animal Logic. Happy Feet looks pretty realistic for anthropomorphized penguins, and it won an Oscar in addition to being financially successful. A more recent example is The LEGO Movie, which is designed to look like a stop-motion film made with LEGOs. This made even more money and gained more critical acclaim and accolades (although somehow it wasn’t even nominated for the Animated Feature Oscar). However, what do Happy Feet and The LEGO Movie have in common? They both utilize live-action within their narratives, with human characters overseeing the actions of the characters within. Even when an audience expects to be paying for a realistic animated film, the animation is still relegated to a special effect. Perhaps, subconsciously, we want to be fooled by a stylized animation rather than being reminded of the realities of a world with a realistic CGI animation.

    1. Trevor Leavell

      Happy Feet and Lego Movie are pretty excellent examples of utilizing live action sequences. It’s kind of weird that more animation movies aren’t really doing it today. I suppose it’s a bit of a difficult thing to get right, like it has to be just jarring enough, but not too jarring, and not too abrupt. As to the movies you’ve said looked ugly by today’s standers, I agree with Ice Age, but I’m not too sure about Antz. It may be the nostalgia talking, but it feels like Antz could come out today. For sure Ice Age though. The animation, by today’s standards, is incredibly outdated. And to think it came out the year after Shrek.

  2. Jon Booker

    This week’s reading’s were all about the rise of 3d or computer animation. The Furniss and first Manovich readings discussed the history of 3d animation, while the second Manovich reading discussed 3d animation in comparrison with art. I was kind of annoyed that Furniss kind of skipped over some of the major films to use computer graphic imagery.

    She did mention Star Wars, the first film to use cgi effects, though very briefly and goes into Terminator 2, the first film to have a fully cgi character. She only mentions Jurassic Park , whose effects even though twenty years old, still hold up beautifully today. She also talks briefly about motion capture, but fails to mention Lord of the Rings whose character Gollum was a defining achievement in computer grapics animation. Though these are live action films, I do consider the effects used in the films as animation, due to the way that they are created and how they interact with their surroundings.

    I will say though, her research on Pixar was one of the highlights for me in this weeks readings. I glad they mentioned some of their early work like Tin Toy and Luxo Jr. It is Toy Story that changed the way animated films are looked at and made. It is sad being a fan of 2d animation that you don’t see much traditional animation anymore, but the achievments that can come from computer animation is also very exciting. Having recently just seen Zootopia and Kung Fu Panda 3, I can say that computer animation and animation in general is in a good place.

    1. Jeremy Thurlby

      My take away of your comments and how I foresee the computer or 3d animation is a tool. It is no better or worse than other styles, its more efficient and allows certain shots or techniques that otherwise would have been impossible. Not much of a animation follower I wonder if the 2d or traditional animation you seek is still seen in the independent animations?

    2. Joey Burrow

      I have to agree with your comment on her research on Pixar. Pixar movies are what motivated me to go into this field. Toy Story came out when I was a young child (two year old) but I grew up with Toy Story. It and its successors was one of my favorites. I think it was watching a behind the scenes of Pixar and seeing Tin Toy for the first time (the scary baby) – animation has come a long way and THAT is what is SO exciting about it. The fact that animation CAN be SO REAL!!!! And yes, it is sad that traditional animation is not seen very much anymore but I feel, like with anything, what is old will be new again. Things always cycle around.

  3. Nicholas Price

    The digital age in cinema was a game changer. It was the start of a new way of animation. It is interesting to look back at the films of the late 80’s and early 90’s when digital animation was making a more common appearance in. These computer generated animations seem to be crude and sometimes poorly put together. Especially the early versions of CGI that were encourperated into live action films. There were things and aspects of these films that it became obvious that certain aspects were not real. It sometimes detracted from the film itself when we were pulled away from the film because of the fact that the computer generated graphics had a stark contrast to the rest of the film.
    Modern day computer graphics are much different. There are some films such as “Beowulf” that are done almost completely in CGI. There are films that use computer graphics to enhance the films and even though the general public knows that the events and characters in the films are not real, the are a smoothness to the integration of these graphics that gives the illusion that the computer generated images could be real. This comes from the heightened ability of animators to use the new technologies that have been invented. It is really amazing to watch such films as “star wars Episode 7” and really be able to believe that the aliens, space ships and other computer generated shots are completely real and exist in a physical space.
    Computer graphics has also made animation a lot quicker and more efficient as well. Instead of pain stakeingly drawing out thousands of cells and painting them all by hand, the computer artist can create images and then move them without having to create new and separate frames. Our heightened abilities and technology allow for completely new and unique styles of animation as well. Such stylized animations such as “Archer” really are only possible because of computer animation. These new skills and styles are extremely amazing and can only continue to grow as the technology and the people working in cenima get better.

    1. Evan Swiech

      You are right about the aesthetic challenges in the early computer-generated animation. Maureen Furniss discusses this in her book. i have seen the Pixar short film “Tin Toy” and I’ll definitely attest to the creepiness of the baby. They toys, however, look much more realistic because they are made from geometric shapes and their surfaces are usually very hard. It is intriguing to note that now, almost all mainstream (if not all mainstream) animated movies are made in CGI unless they are based off an animated TV series that had a more traditional, 2-D look.

  4. Charles Scott

    If we are going to consider anything that has been manipulated with digital processes, animation then animation is a much larger field than it would appear at the surface. I am not sure where I stand on this argument.

    On one hand, I appreciate the lineage of animation as a form of art that is dependent on the “animator” controlling, if not outright creating, all of the component parts (e.g. frames, models, backgrounds). It is a medium that is definitely known for its laborious, tedious processes.

    On the other hand, I also understand that not everything can or should be created from scratch. If a live action film needs a scene to have green grass where it is not naturally available, the composite shot could, but might not need to be considered animation.

    But this is a categorical problem. The need to categorize films (or scenes) by the label of “animated” stems from an outdated and misinformed phobia of animated films as being lower than the High Art of Cinema. The categorizing is for each viewer and creator to decide for themselves; whether live action, animation, or somewhere in the middle ground, there are lots of considerations to make. In a time where possibilities are nearly endless, It is nice to see such a wide range of expression within this spectrum.

    1. Jeremy Thurlby

      Categorizing is a necessary evil, and I think in this case it is warranted and prob needs more distinction. It is no different than the Fine Art world, should all art mediums simply be called “art”? Should gas station kitsch art, folk art and paintings from the Italian masters be all in the same category? I think not…

    2. Stefan Barnwell

      I agree with your statement that not everything needs to be created from scratch. Adding graphics to a scene to enhance the story or overall experience for viewers is a good thing if it is necessary. However many films tend to use computer alterations just to say “look at this awesome thing we can do!” Sometimes huge cgi scenes seem forced. Sometimes the technology is used out of laziness because it is easier or cheaper to digitally create something rather than finding a real location or building a real prop.

  5. Jeremy Thurlby

    The Furniss reading makes me question the value or standing of CGI or computer based animation. Today we see many forms of animation but as she mentions in the chapter with computer based work there is never a physical element. Obviously in todays world even paper cut out animations are post processed via a computer. I guess for me its this flux of methods and mediums that make it difficult to compare different animations. This is mirrored in the fine art world with Laser cutting and 3D printers becoming common place, it begs the question is a computer generated object that has been printed still art? Anomalisa kind of bridges this as the characters have 3D printed faces so it means the characters had to be 3D modeled and printed before filming could ever begin.

    The reading ” What is Digital Cinema” by Manovich is quite interesting by the claims that since a film based “live action film” becomes essentially a computer animation once it is digitized, I hadn’t considered that aspect.

    The thought of digital cinema as painting is a bit of a stretch for me. Painting generally denotes a category of fine art, which can be tied to hand drawn animation or cels. Which is also why I think cels are so collectable. So unless digital prints or scenes are displayed or sold in a similar manner I can’t see them as painting other than computer illusion of paint itself.

    The portion of the reading concerning digital animation and its development in regards to a math algorithm provides a weird conceptual context. We are actually viewing a math problem and not something that actually exist in the world.

    1. Tiffany McLaughlin

      I get why 3D wouldn’t seem like it would be technically “art” since it is not physical. To answer your question, I guess it would be considered art because it is still created with one’s creative ideas and visions, it’s just a different “canvas”. Although it isn’t technically physical, it is still bringing something in one’s creative mind to “life”.

  6. Fiona Finnigan

    Digital Graphics have greatly changed they way live action and animation cinema are produced, finished and thought about. Advances in computer graphics have allowed artists to create increasingly more realistic digital imagery, to the extend that it is now possible to combine live action footage with digital effects and enhancements in a manner that is almost seamless.
    This ability to seamlessly alter live footage has changed they way live action and animation interact. An excellent example of this is the latest selection of superhero block busters. These films merge CGI and live action footage, with many scenes combining both real props and actors with digitally created effects. This kind of merging of live action and animated digital effects stands in clear contrast to the usual assumptions about animation: that animation drawn on cels and made by Disney. It thus also avoids the association between children and animation. Super hero movies have a very different target audience than Disney films.
    Another issue mentioned in the readings was the inconsistency of realism in computer generated environments. Computer simulated graphics are only as realistic as the underlying mathematical models allow them to be. Simulating the human figure has proved particularly difficult. As anyone who has ever tried their hand at figure drawing can attest, humans are very sensitive to what other humans should and should not look like. Features that are off by even a few millimeters, or movements that are even slightly too stiff or too smooth will immediately be noticed. However, technology has advanced quite a bit since any of our reading was written. For example, “Deadpool” feature a completely CGI version of the X-Man Colossus, who, other than being made out of living steel, provoked no adverse response in viewers.

  7. Tara Lowry

    Reading about 3D animation this week was an experience on multiple levels. Manovich explores both how cinema has developed into something else entirely – a moving, time-based branch of painting, while also looking into how cinema, special effects, and 3D animation have developed in a continuous attempt to effectively mimic reality. Maybe this is just something that my family is bothered by, but for many members of my family (myself included) seeing 3D-animated special effects become so strongly integrated into cinema (which debatably has transformed into digital cinema considering the way the industry now uses live action shots) has been a little disappointing. There is no doubt that it is skillfully applied. “Life of Pi” has the main actor interacting with an animated tiger throughout the film, “The Hobbit” sees the protagonist speaking to a giant motion-capture dragon, various Marvel films take advantage of explosions and aliens and Tesseract-powered guns added digitally in post production, and so on and so forth. The same technology that transforms the actors and actresses of “Avatar” and “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” into aliens and paints a foreign planets and mythical landscapes can develop into fully explorable games and virtual reality. At the same time, I was waiting for Manovich to address the viewer recognizing – and potentially being put off by – the off-ness of the special effects that comes from being so carefully programmed to mimic reality while still being recognizably digital and therefore /not/ reality when worked with live action footage and actors/actresses. Maybe it’s just my family that has a love for carefully painted special effects make-up, animatronics, fabrication, and sets, but I thought it odd that Manovich didn’t bring up the difference in the viewing experience that potentially arises for people when these things are substituted for the new technology.

    I don’t think Manovich is wrong about cinema developing into something more digital. As opposed to supplementing the footage with digital effects – something that Studio Ghibli sometimes does with their 2D animated films, allowing them to still be considered a 2D animation – the capabilities of CGI is starting to draw a line in cinema. Without having seen “Mad Max: Fury Road” I already know that practical effects were dominantly used to create it (if not entirely used to make the film), while also being aware of the fact that BB8 in “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” is practical as well. Whenever cinema sticks to using tangible props and careful real-life tricks, it is almost always brought up. On the other hand, 3D animation and computer generated special effects are starting to become so common place that, while you can find it on the special features portion of your blu-ray, the film isn’t often talked about in large amounts for using a program to generate an explosion or green screen to insert a background. It’s often simply expected or understood. At least this is how I perceive it, though admittedly that might be because I love to hear that practical effects are still in use.

    On the other hand, on its own 3D animation is something I find to be very beautiful and extremely impressive. With the new tools available to us such as bump mapping, texturing, and lighting we are able to model and create completely animated, highly detailed, rich worlds. While I may not always enjoy the heavy-handed use of 3D animation in combination with live action, I can definitely appreciate the artistic take on realism it presents when in a world of its own design. “Frozen”, for instance, involved animators studying the way light reflects, refracts, and overall interacts with ice, and their research certainly didn’t go to waste. With the very opening shot of the ice on the water, the viewer can see, recognize, and believe the ice – even going so far as to think it is definitely real and, by extension, working realistically – within the context of the animated location it exists in. Those who worked on “Finding Nemo” looked into the movements of water and how light interacts with it, developing an ocean surface that accidentally looked so real that to put it into their film would have likely caused viewers to think they /hadn’t/ animated it. So instead they simplified the results a tad to ensure it flowed with the rest of the film.

    1. Evan Swiech

      I agree with you and Manovich; cinema is moving towards digital. I did a report on it last semester and Warner Bros. has sent its last movie to theaters on film (“Anchorman 2”). From now on, they will only submit movies digitally. Manovich mentions “Forest Gump”, which is a very important movie because it is one of the first instances of extensive computer-generated work in a film that was not an action or adventure movie. In other words, it’s not a genre that was known for using CGI.

      Monarch states that cinema originally existed to capture and restore reality. Your analysis of “Frozen” is intriguing within this context. The CGI in “Frozen” creates a new reality instead of capturing reality. We believe the ice is real and we believe that ice an exist and be manipulated as it is in the movie.

  8. Laura Tate

    I though Manovich’s “What is Digital Cinema” was absolutely fascinating to read. In “What is Digital Cinema?” Manovich uses the history of cinema in order to explain the nature of today’s digital filmmaking. What Manovich demonstrates is that, while processes such as “the manual construction of images, loop actions, the discrete nature of space and movement” were central to proto-cinema as well as cinema in the beginning, these processes were eventually crowded out as cinema became marked as an “indexible” form; photographs on film put in motion.

    Manovich then describes how these processes where then “delegated to cinema’s bastard relative, its supplement, its shadow– animation.” Cinema put a distance between itself and animation, even in denying the way in which it is constructed by privileging the idea of cinema an indexical, photographic form; Monovich explains that “cinema works hard to erase any traces of its own production process, including indication that the images which we see could have been constructed rather than recorded.” Digital cinema, however, comes back to the processes that were once pushed off to animation. Manovich defines digital cinema as “a particular case of animation which uses live action material as one of its many elements.”

    In order to understand this definition better, I thought about an example of a franchise which has used film, animation, and digital filmmaking; Star Trek. The original Star Trek series utilized film. Despite having some special effects, the series still focused on physical sets and actors. In particular, Star Trek was known for relying on human actors in makeup, prosthetics, and suits, as well as occasional puppets and animals to represent the alien life they were to encounter. Jumping forward to the 70s, the original Star Trek series is turned into an animated series, and already new possibilities for locations, effects, and life abound. As entirely fabricated, the animated series was not bound by the restrictions of trying to project a sense of recorded reality; flying insect monsters, a Lion-woman officer, and planet inhabited by sentient plants all blended in seamlessly in the animated environment along with human characters and more familiar constructs. Now, in recent years, a digital film reboot of the series employs the same exact concept. While a giant animated monster chasing is combined with live action footage of Kirk running, the monster, landscape, and footage of Kirk are one in the same; digital information, or “pixels.”

  9. Maggie Batson

    This week’s topic is one of my favorites, I would like to be involved in 3D animation some day and I love to hear about about it, especially from multiple angles. I find it interesting some of the conflicting ideas between bits of the readings. For example, in the reading from Furniss, it talks about a time when Lasseter met with animator Raoul Servais and their conversation was about the importance of narrative, when on the other hand, Lev Manovitch is less interested in what the film is saying narratively and more interested in the technologies and how the system works.

    On a different note, I feel that the films created from this 3D animation technology are just as important as any other film and hope that more people will see them this way, in more than just a financial sense. I have taken multiple classes discussing the pedagogical structure of these animated films and it can be surprising sometimes the impact of some of these films.

    For example, much of the Disney Princess films have terrible messages when looked at through a critical lens. One specific example is Beauty and the Beast, overall, the film says that even if he abuses you, just stay with him, he’ll get better. Now, I know what you’re thinking, how could I say that about a Disney film? well, critically, it’s undeniable, but that doesn’t mean that I can’t still enjoy the movie. I just think that it is very important for people to see multiple views of one thing, as these readings for this week has done.

    1. Dionte Bolling

      I do also want to be involved in 3D animation some day. Nowadays more animated movies are being made in 3D and CGI. In my opinion, the technology behind a film shouldn’t matter. I believe that as long as the creators of the content tell a really meaningful story then thats what matters the most.

  10. Casey

    I viewed a documentary recently entitled “Listen to Me Marlon.” In it, a personal tape recording by Marlon Brando prophetizes the future of the actor. “I’ve had my head digitized. They digitized my face. Actors are not gonna be real, they’re gonna be inside a computer. You watch, it’s gonna happen, so maybe this is the swan song for all of us.” Manovich toys with the possibility of indistinguishable digital animation in film. If what Brando says will happen, happens, the entire profession goes to the machines. Arnold Schwarzenegger in “Terminator” gets replaced by the partly-cgi T-1000 in “Terminator 2: Judgement Day.” Another documentary I watched recently sees William Shatner sit down with Leonard Nimoy. In “Mind Meld: Secrets Behind the Voyage of a Lifetime,” Shatner expresses his fear of death, which his long-time friend likens to a Shakespeare quote: “A poor player, that struts and frets his hour upon the stage, and then is heard no more.” This line or two, taken from a famous soliloquy colloquially titled “Tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow,” links up with Brando in a profound way. And the filmmakers of “Listen to Me Marlin” knew it. I was surprised to hear Brando reciting the monologue in the documentary. Although the actor is dead, the filmmakers of this documentary resurrect him through computer generated imagery.

    Is re-animating a dead actor morally appropriate? I am reminded of a Volkswagen commercial shown to students in CP260. In it, the filmmakers utilize visual effects to plaster Gene Kelly’s face onto the body of a hip-hop dancer. The ad recreates and “updates” the classic “Singin’ in the Rain” musical number. Brando’s case of digitization seems unique in that he had the foresight to give consent; he physically scanned his face and engaged himself mentally regarding digital duplication of the human face. Gene Kelly, on the other hand, had no say in his resurrection, and the decision was left to licensing as well as his estate. I think, also, the topic relates to trending things in Hollywood. Allegedly, the filmmakers behind the soon-to-be-released, live-action Ghost in the Shell (which we watched in class) movie tested CGI makeup on Scarlett Johansson in order to make her appear “more Asian.” So new digital technologies have the capacity to further Hollywood whitewashing, simultaneously presenting and misrepresenting a group of people. On the face of it, Gene Kelly dances to a hip, new hoppy beat, but underneath remains some young dancer wearing the rotten skin of a dead actor. Luckily, as we learned from Tron: Legacy and Terminator: Genisys, digital age reduction can significantly lengthen the acting career of an aging actor… even past their death!

  11. Connor Strehl

    Computers have worked their way into all aspects of life and work. Why should film production be an exception? Film-making has always been about rearranging reality. With the aid of computers it is now about rearranging images and the film itself is only one element of many compiling the final product.
    Tarkovsky said, “Cinema’s most basic gesture is to open the shutter and to start the film rolling, recording whatever happens to be in front of the lens.” However, this isn’t the case anymore. Cinema like everything else is evolving due to technology. It has been this way since its creation and will continue to be. Everything advances whether we want it to or not. In the past, when the technology wasn’t available to create a particular scene or look the director wanted, creative artists found a way to make it happen. We can be pessimistic about how these innovations are ruining the art or we can embrace them.
    Just because we have CGI available to us doesn’t mean that we have to use it. We can still use techniques from the past to get the feel and look we want in our product. However having the capabilities that technology has to offer available allows us to do things with our films that we could have only dreamed of a short while ago. These improvements can also help us to recreate various styles from the past with ease. The advancements in technology afford artists the versatility to do anything they can imagine. Anymore, the sky isn’t even the limit!

  12. Dennis Hinton

    This weeks readings and discussion thus far has been the best of the semester. My background deals with digital graphics and 3d animation. Use programs dealing with those two fields everyday for fun and for assignments. It is damn near impossible to not use a form of graphics, 3d animation or cgi in any film in Hollywood. When people think of 3d animation or cgi they mainly think action films or some form of super hero movie. But a movie that can have a simple romantic plot could and most likely use these tools. Rather is adjusting someone chin, mouth, or hairs, to the background of the clouds the water and trees. #d animation has become a default tool in Hollywood.

    James Calderon is not the founder of cgi and 3d animation but he definitely is a key reason why the progression of cgi is where it is today. I believe it was 1998 when Terminator 2 came out and he was the special effects artists on the movie team. He completely knocked everyone socks off. What he did in the late 90s was completely before its time before the technology used in the todays film. You can take that movie cgi and it can be in comparison with any movie today. To quote south park “James Calderon has raising the bar again”. He introduced to the world his newest creation avatar in 2009. Where the entire movie was cgi. And it looked so real spending over a billion dollars for its creation.

    I think animation has sky rocketed the movie industry, allowing to do the impossible and making it look real at the same time. Cgi has allowed us to make our imaginations come true. For example humans over creative imaginations were always turned into books or comics or some form of novel. Now we are seeing those same novels turned into films. With animation anything is possible. I just saw the movie jungle book and I will say thus far is the best movie of the year. It gave me the same feeling when I saw avatar the animals were completely cgi but they gave off a human feel because of how they animated the faces, purely amazing.

    I also believe that people rely too much on cgi and animation that they lose focus on the premise, the plot, the dialogue, they are too worried about making the movie look good some examples are Green Lantern, and The Transfomers series to just name a couple. Some film makers lose track and get caught up in how the visual aspect of the movie.

  13. Kenneth Christensen

    I find it interesting how Disney takes it’ films and makes toys and other items out of them. It is clear that to an extent, Disney is making its cartoons coming into the real world. It’s conceivable now that the next step could be to make a digital hologram projection that would make one feel like they were really in the movie. Would this effect what we describe as animation? Would this change the definition of animation? I find it interesting how Disney creates a new item based off an old cartoon and still make tones of money simply because the old version is brought into a new light or type of animation, making it seem more realistic. My question is, is this sustainable? The fact that more and more people are gaining access to advanced technology could set the stage for upcoming independent filmmakers becoming a potential competitor to a company like Disney or Pixar. Newer technology allows a person to network more effectively now than ever before. I love the question, “if a computer is dealing with separate images internally, but to the artist or viewer, these frames are always seen as constant motion, can this still be animation? I believe that yes it can be due to the fact that one can generate a moving character image in this manner. If technology reaches the point of allowing there to be no cuts between pieces, that would have to be considered a higher form of animation or next generation. It is perhaps more likely than not that the future of animation lies within the computer and all one has to do is push the button and see what comes out.
    The concept of realism is something that strikes me as the next step. The concept that 3-D animation and computer graphics breaks away from the traditional forms of art and cinema. This technology actually allows one to move around and experience the story or whatever it is they are watching in a way that a painting cannot. While within the current technological bounds, the image is separate from reality, within the near future, it may be that the digital technology overlaps with the real and creates an actual setting in which the audience can participate in. This is just a thought. Andre Bazon was right in his belief that cinema was ultimately heading toward a more realistic representation, or representation of reality. It is interesting that he believed the depth of field was a step toward realism. I would have to agree because it brings the audience into the space, allowing them to observe the surroundings in a realistic manner. It is also a step closer to the present computer technology we have today and may in fact be a motivating force in the quest for more realistic films. With the rise of computer realism it may be that Arnold Schwarzenegger and Bruce Willis will still be acting in a hundred years as computerized generations. If this is the case, the question will be whether or not its moral.

  14. Timothy Rosenberg

    As an animation minor, digital animation is the only method I’ve been able to become familiar with. I thought it was a little funny when in chapter 9, Furniss mentions how many viewers actually thought sections of Toy Story were real, when viewing the film now, it’s pretty easy to spot the 90’s style CGI and how far we’ve come in terms of realism. It makes me think about modern day, that perhaps what we think looks really good and realistic in twenty years will be looked upon with a nostalgic smile and laughed at by the future generations for not being as up to date as their hyperealistic CGI and animation.
    There is something to be said for the older methods of animation, as I sincerely believe there are instances where they look even better than the highly polished Hollywood schlock we get today. Just the notion of handmade animation makes me think of the countless hours someone sat there and put personality and character into the animation, which still of course exists today in modern animation, but not quite to the same extent. Everything seems just extremely similar to me, I would hardly be able to tell the difference between Frozen and Tangled, or Big Hero 6 and Wall-E. They all share a certain style in my eyes, something that makes every new animation film even more indistinguishable from the rest. This was also evident in earlier hand drawn animation, but to me it had a certain charm, something that is missing from a lot of modern animation. But enough of my cynicism.
    I was confused on page 177 where it says “1933, Rosendahl explained: ” and then goes on to discuss the rise of “morphing” in film, referencing Michael Jackson’s “Black or White” music video as well as Cameron’s “Terminator 2”. At first I was like, this Rosendahl dude must have had one hell of a psychic ability if he predicated Michael Jackson and Terminator 2 all the way back from 1933. Then I realized he must have meant back in 1933 when the rise of morphing came about, which still confused me as he doesn’t mention anything using morphing in 1933. Either way, the main point of the quote is to say that what used to be an expensive cinematic tool, a sort of early form of CGI, is now cheap and easily available to everyone with a computer. I’m interested in this line of thinking and how technology has increasingly gotten better, faster, cheaper over a period of a decade. I can only imagine what will be available to us in another ten years.

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