Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Inbetween X

I realize it's been a long time since I last posted some of my own work here.
Two days ago I went skiing for the first time this season which inspired me to do the following color studies.

photoshop over pencil sketch

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Dec 24: Christmas Eve [Updated]

And finally, a Nativity scene as depicted by François Boucher in the 18th century. I will leave these last few posts open until the 26th of December, so you'll be able to answer despite the whole Christmas rush.

Anyway, Merry Christmas to you all and thanks for participating!

What color is the Virgin Mary wearing?

A                       B                      C                      D

Ever since the Middle Ages, Mary is usually wearing blue (C).
This can be seen in most classic nativity scenes, three-dimensional or painted. Furthermore, red, green and blue is the color combination that symbolizes trinity, whereas green and blue point to the presence of Jesus. When talking about films, I don't like to dwell on the symbolic use of colors because symbolism usually is quite arbitrary. With religious paintings however, symbolic colors have been broadly established and were well-known among the people for centuries. Note how the blue coat contrasts the green skirt of the other woman, that wasn't really coming off as green in the picture above.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Dec 23: Lady and the Tramp [Updated]

What's the color of the present next to the ball (above Scamp's head)?

A                       B                      C                      D

Despite all the christmas presents that are red and blue (blue is least obtrusive here, as the floor is also kind of blue), this one parcel is green (B) like the Christmas tree that is hardly visible in this framing.
In the wider shot it might not stand out because we only register the tree in background, in the closer framing it works well with the overall red-green Christmas theme.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Dec 22: Maugli - The Russian Jungle Book [Updated]

If you know me personally, then you are probably aware of my interest in all things Jungle Book. Although as a film critic I could give you a whole list of things that are wrong with Walt Disney's 1967 version of the book it all just doesn't matter to me; I adore it, no matter what.

For this post however, I have chosen some screenshots from Maugli, the Russian series by Roman Davydov. Made between 1966 and 1971 as a five-part series, it was assembled into a 95 minute feature (1973). At the same time, there was also a charming Russian version of Winnie the Pooh.

 Many of the animals have different eye colors that are constant throughout the picture.
Which of the colors A-E correspond with the eyes of the following characters 1-5?
(For example: 1A, 2B,...)

1. Baloo


2. Father Wolf


3. Tabaqui


4. Bagheera


5. Rama, the bull


A                 B                 C                 D                 E 

The correct answer is: 1B, 2D, 3E, 4A, 5C
I'm quite impressed by Soriah's answer which reveals her thinking to be totally correct. Here are the original pictures then:

Monday, December 21, 2009

Dec 21: Tarte aux pommes [Updated]

(The Think Pink post has just been updated.)

Besides Georges Schwizgebel there are not many Swiss independent animators that are known throughout the world. One of them is Isabelle Favez. Her film Valises is currently in the festival circuit and in Swiss cinemas as a supporting movie. Her minimalistically designed and animated stories (she mainly uses cel action 2D) are heavily inspired by Russian cut-out film makers.

Today, I want to direct your attention to a frame enlargement from Tarte aux pommes (2006), a gentle short about a baker, her cat, a butcher, a hunter and his dog. The blue kitchen reminds me of the birth scene in 101 Dalmatians.

What's the color of the table?

A                      B                     C                    D

The answer is C, green:

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Dec 20: Georges Schwizgebel [Updated]

After so much 50s Hollywood, let's turn to contemporary independent animation for a change: La course à l'abîme (1992) is one of Schwizgebel's hand painted masterpieces. Set to music by Gounod ("The Damnation of Faust"), it is one of several of his short films that revolve around a Faustian theme.

In my opinion, this is mandatory viewing not only because of the successful marriage of music and animation but also for its sheer conceptual brilliance.

What's the color of the second (black) horseman's hat (upper left corner)?
In case you are new, THIS is how it works. 

A                      B                      C                      D

It was D (yellow):

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Dec 19: Red Herring [Updated]

Live-action frames again: doors painted red used to be quite common in Hollywood pictures. Of the following four frame enlargements only three contain a red door however.

A. Bus Stop (Logan, 1956)
B. All that heaven allows (Sirk, 1955)
C. Vertigo (Hitchcock, 1958)
D. The Great Escape (Sturges, 1963)

Which screenshot does NOT include a red door?
In case you are new, THIS is how it works.

See for yourself: