Thursday, May 31, 2007

Using Photographs to Enhance Videos of a Static Scene

This is freakin' amazing stuff. The future of visual effects if you will. This just makes it all look so easy. Color me impressed. The website of the project is Using Photographs to Enhance Videos of a Static Scene
The work presents a system for automatically producing a wide variety of video enhancements and visual effects. Unlike traditional visual effects software (e.g., After Effects, Shake, Boujou, etc), the system is completely automatic and no manual labor is required from the user. The major limitation of the work is that it can currently handle only videos of static scenes (i.e., videos shot with a moving camera but containing no moving objects in the scene). Efforts are being made to lift this restriction in future work.

Applications of the system include:
High resolution/definition video,
High dynamic range video,
Removing objects from a video,
Creating painterly (NPR) videos,
Video stabilization,
Easy video editing

Via Flowseeker


Division Of Laura Lee - Black City

Some really nice visual effects in this piece. I'm digging the ghosted people who have a digital feedback/hologram effect on them. The effect with the multiplied video spinning through 3D space at 2:30 is very groovy.


Paulig Presidentti Coffee Ad "Fantasia"

coffee adI originally posted this spot on May 18, but decided to repost it since Studio Daily has a great article about the commerical. Check out the article: Animating a Coffee-Lovers' Fantasy: Stardust Studio Creates Animated HD Spot for Finnish Coffee Brand written by Matt Armstrong.

Here is the original post:

My friend Alicia sent me this gorgeous Paulig Presidentti Coffee, the most popular brand in Finland, they say.

The ad was done by Stardust Studios. There's a great press release regarding the spot, which started airing only in Finland in early May. Finland is one of the largest consumers of coffee in the world. Who knew. I thought it would be the Italians and their espresso or the Seattlites and their Starbuck and Seattle's best.

"They had certain things that they wanted in the spot," Bibby explained, "which ultimately had to be all about transformation... a moment of solitude where one's mind wanders, going on a journey, where one thing leads to another and another, until it all comes back to the coffee."
In the finished spot, on a field of dark green, a golden droplet appears and splashes down into dark liquid, forming a golden wave that instantly transforms into a lion's head. The golden liquid pours down over dark mountains to a waterfall, where particles stream into a lake before soaring comet-like into a dark green sky above a forest, and exploding like fireworks. One of the fireballs takes the form of a glowing golden bird, which soars past, leaving a wake of floating feathers which become butterflies, and then, a field of golden flowers. An elk runs through the field, and golden particles mix with the northern lights, before the brand's golden cup appears, with the campaign tagline, "Maailman parhaista kahvilaaduista," (which translates into, "from the best coffees in the world"). The spot features a rich orchestral score throughout, which was composed by Tuomas Kantelinen, and mixed at Helsinki's Soundtrack Studios by Mikko Oinonen.

Lots of impressive 3D work, but we both Alicia and I thought that if coffee makes you see beautiful images like this, it must contain some psychedelic mushrooms. It really is a gorgeous spot. You'd never see Sanka or Foldgers doing an ad like that!

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Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Revolutions - NewTek (Video Toaster Demonstration)

The Video Toaster was revolutionary at the time. Toaster Paint and Lightwave 3D... for just four grand. This is VERY entertaining stuff right here. The voice over guy talks to himself and the transitions are straight from the 80s. It says Todd Rungren was an animator on the video. That Todd Rungren?

Kiki Stockhammer, presenter from NewTek and Kiki Wipe model will be the guest on our next podcast. She's all over this video. That is going to be one great interview, so don't miss it.

We had a toaster during my last semester of college and I used Toaster Paint at my old company for a while. It was a great product.


Uncut - Darkhorse

A very cool stop motion piece by the band Uncut and director by Kris Lefcoe. They have a very creative description for the video.


On the Kris Lefcoe-directed clip, the barely concealed likes of Ronald McDonald, Tony the Tiger, and the Care Bears appear to have taken Worang's advice. Some cute anarchists try to party in a forest that's about to become an Enormart, but meanwhile your corporate-sponsored childhood memories are taking firing practice, running obstacle courses, and of course hacking up the damn hippies with chainsaws. 'Cause you fucking know, Ronald don't play that.

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Tuesday, May 29, 2007

The Strokes - You Only Live Once

Lots of cool "high-tech" computer screen animations and 3D space scenery and ships. There's a nice hologram effect on the band toward the end of the video too. The plot of the video, if I'm following correctly, is that they're time traveling through a worm hole and go into the future over 40,000 years. In the end, they're back in 1977. I don't think the plot is very strong, but the effects are very cool. Color me impressed.

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Saturday, May 26, 2007

Decendents- When I Get Old

Cool flipbook effect! I think this is drawn, not digitally created.


Air - Mer du Japon

Two women shot dance over a gradient background with shadowy flowing fish and bubbles. I'm loving the giant sea dragon that wraps around them. Interesting compositing. It has a 70s feel for me. Directed by Guillaume de la Perriere.


Expressions After Effects

Now this is the kind of stuff I'd like to post more often! The information is all in French, but the Babel Fish Translation tells me: Original creation for the "Book of the designer" on After Effects (ED Eyrolles). Workshop 06 based on the expressions. The tutorial is in the book. Very cool effect!


Klaxons - Golden Skans

An interesting videos that starts out with some text and particle effects, explosions, water effects, with orb shaped glass being shattered and interesting ribbon effects. Was that Trapcode 3D Stroke I see?


Friday, May 25, 2007

You've Come A Long Way, Baby


The 88 Sears Commercial

The Uber talented Katie Gobright sent me this Sears commercial which is part of their new campaign. Time goes by with a page flip... a Sears catalog possibly? The effects are somewhat subtle and this one takes a few watchings to really catch it all. The Song is called "Coming Home" by The 88.


Thursday, May 24, 2007

Anatomy of a One Punch Knockout

Incredible 3D animation about boxing punches, produced by National Geographic.

Via Axiomsun


White Stripes - Icky Thump

The White Stripes are rockin out once again. I am a HUGE White Stripes fan and this is the first track from their new album which will be released in mid-June. The Stripes are known for amazing videos - Fell in Love with a Girl, The Hardest Button to Button, The Denial Twist. This one doesn't have nearly as many cool visual effects, however I love the use of color. It's striking.

Icky Thump was directed by Emmett Malloy and Brendan Malloy and co-directed by Jack White.


Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Low in the Sky - Are you for Real?

This is a music video for Ambient Ohio band, Low in the Sky. In it, a nude woman dances around and gets covered in blue Post-Its. There are some stylish repeating effects and it flows really well with the music. It was is "a successful collaboration between Choreographer and dance filmaker Cari Ann Shim Sham* and Eyestorm founder Kyle Ruddick."

Via Antville


Timbaland - Throw It On Me (Featuring the Hives)

The video: There's the ubiquitous rap video tarts, but the video has a 'marvel'ous comic book/Sin City style. I've seen this done before, but this is fun and fast. It was directed by The Saline Project.

The song: I like the Hives a lot, but this song really sucks. I'm not sure what they were thinking.


U.N.K.L.E. - Burn My Shadow

UnkleBurn My Shadow is the newest track from U.N.K.L.E. and they've got some star power behind this single. Ian Astbury from The Cult is on vocals and Goran Visnjic, who plays the sexy Croatian Dr. Luka Kovac on E.R., stars in the video. Director: Miguel Sapochnik

The video isn't filled with visual effects, but the cutting is very well done and I love the shot composition. I think they could've used a better plug-in at the end though ;-)


Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Los Campesinos! - You! Me! Dancing!

Very entertaining, simplified cartoon style video from the Welsh band, Los Campesinos. I'm digging the tune. Wales really has some great bands (yeah, I'm talkin' to you Super Furry Animals!)

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The House of Flying Daggers Trailer

House of Flying DaggersThe House of Flying Daggers came out in 2004, but I caught it on Spike tonight. I was blown away by the visual effects. The soldiers running through the tops of the bamboo stalks and the impossible flying daggers... phenomenal. Sure, it's a lot like the effects of Crouching Tiger, but still freakin' cool. The colors are breathtaking and cinematography is awe-inspiring. I love the greens in the costumes and bamboo forest. The snow at the end, which I read was just a freak October snowstorm in the Ukraine where they shot, worked to the directors benefit as a beautiful contrast to the blood and symbolic to the end of life and love. Also Zyang Ziyi's performance as a blind girl is top drawer.

I highly recommend this film, even if it's 3 years too late ;-) Sadly, the last film I've seen in the theatre was "Over the Hedge" I have a huge list of films to see. I'm midway through The Motorcycle Diaries which is also a cinematic feast for the eyes.


Saturday, May 19, 2007

Mysterious Mose

"The most amazing puppet short film by Mark Caballero & Seamus Walsh" This is so old skool. Wow. Gorgeous colors. It does seem to take forever to load though.


Ed Banger Volumen 2

So awesome.


Friday, May 18, 2007

Slow Hand Motem - Fake Spirit Egg

Stop motion music video. Loads O' Fun. The glasses are awesome.

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Nightcrawler X Men Effect

A cool effect made in Adobe After Effects. I wish the lighting were a bit better, but I really like the effect. So, how do you think he did it?


The Good The Bad And The Queen - Sufi Video (Stephen Pook)

Very few effects but great editing and a very interesting video. The end turns into one of those mirrored 70s psychedelic effects but this seems a bit different that the usual use. It looks like an Indian rave. That guy in the red can really shake it.

This is not what I'd expect from The Good, The Bad and The Queen, which is fronted by Damon Albarn of Blur and Gorillaz. The song rocks and the video is really interesting and somehow works well with the song. They've totally thought out of the box on this one.


The Beautiful Girl - I Thought About You

beautiful girlsThe music video for the song I Thought About You by Aussie Indie band The Beautiful Girls. There are no beautiful girls in the video, but lots of things like a wig, confetti, money, marbles, puzzle pieces, playing cards and rose petals falling ultra slow motion. According to IF:MV, the video was shot at frame rates of up to 4,000 frames per second. Wow. I can't imagine how much film they shot! The video was directed by Kiku Ohe.


Thursday, May 17, 2007

Dan Deacon - Crystal Cat

Crystal Cat is a totally fun, cheesy, effects for the sake of effects, public access looking video. Lots of keyed video, psychedelic 70's style mirror effect, the diamond transition and loads of kooky people.

The video does take a while to load, but it's a nice diversion.


Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Animusic - Pipe Dream

I've seen this piece and another like it on PBS during their fund drives... you know, when PBS plays their best stuff like the Celtic Women concert. I've wanted to post it for a long time but I had no idea what it was called and I always came upon it partway through. Christen Roede sent me a link to a French site hosting the video. Since I don't read French, I did a bit of research on it.

I found conflicting reports on the web. Rumor has it, that it's farm equipment that someone spent hours rigging. Yes, that's pretty unbelivable, especially with the camera moves involved. Sorry, but there's no way it could be built in a barn. It's much too complex, even for Rube Goldberg. It doesn't quite look "real" either. Maybe it's the shadows and lighting. According to Snopes, as I originally thought, it's computer-animated - a frickin' fantastic computer animation. It IS a feast for the eyes and ears alright!

Thanks to Christen Roede for sending the original link. Atom Films has the full piece, even though you may have to watch an ad (but, hey, it supports the Atom Film, which is an awesome site).

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Tuesday, May 15, 2007


A beautiful, but also creepy, cg piece about a woman who grows butterfly wings through her back. This makes me think of a non-mucus spewing version The Fly, and with a lovely soundtrack. It's very pretty, but that whole bug-human thing makes me itchy.

I may have actually posted this one a while ago, but came across it again today at Axiomsum.

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Sunday, May 13, 2007

Universal Studios Employee Video Directed by Matt Stone and Trey Parker

They did a a terrific job giving the piece a vintage look. I'm very curious about their technique for getting this effect... the blown out whites really help, the fuzzy font style, as well as the announcers voice (who sounds a little like Mr. Garrison).

This is so funny. Porcelain deer and Jaws are comedy gold. There are lots of cameos by famous people (Shawn Cassidy! C'mon everybody get down, get with it). They subtitle Sylvester Stalone! Hilarious. It's Ucs for Me! (via Tumblr)


Saturday, May 12, 2007

Doll Face

Yeah, this is creepy but really very impressive. "A machine with a doll face mimics images on television screen in search of a satisfactory visage. Doll Face presents a visual account of desires misplaced and identities fractured by our technological extension into the future." Created and directed by Andy Huang and starring Christina Frenzel. (Via)

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Digitalism - Pogo

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Friday, May 11, 2007

Fujiya & Miyagi - Ankle Injuries

Ankle Injuries is a song that I've loved for a long time. It's just so catchy when they chant "Fujiya Miyagi" over and over. I had a feeling that the band wasn't Japanese and this video confirms my suspicions.

Director Wade Shotter does this great stop motion effect with dice, reminiscent of one of my all time favorite videos, the White Stripes Fell in Love with a Girl (directed by Michel Gondry). I love the part with the kids going down the twirly slide and on the swing. You know a video is going to be great when they feature Space Invaders.


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Heartless Bastards - All This Time

I like the rainbow stroke around the keyed footage. Some cool effects too. Nothing entirely new (reminicent of that 311 Don't Tread on Me video in places and the All-American Rejects Move Along with the ultra quick cuts toward the end, but this is well done and fun to watch.


Hallucination Generation (1966)


Thursday, May 10, 2007

Beastie Boys - Shadrach

Awesome paint effects. This had to be done by hand. It's really beautiful and unique. I heart Beastie Boys.


Men in Black by Zinzius

This is a really cool animation style and a moving piece with a narrative by U.S. Army Specialist Colby Buzzel. It was featured on "America at a Crossroads". I love the subtle color and use of 2D in 3D space. Amazing work.

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Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Method Studio's CG Montage

Method StudioMethod's CG Reel came out today. I love the stuff done for Sears with the power tools blooming out of flowers. Amazing 3D and compositing. You'll see the fern and pink flowers with the drills. I first saw those spots at the Chicago Motion Graphics Festival in January 2007. Mindblowing effects.


Musus Glaw - Cowbois Rhos Botwnnog

Fun video and cool song. By the name I'm guessing they're Welsh. I just found their MySpace and it looks like Wales, alright... everything is in Welsh. "Un noson unig ar Ros Botwnnog, eisteddai tri brawd o amgylch y tan." Sorry, I can't tell you much about the video.

I like the effect on the exploding sun and the other nice weather effects. Some cleverly composited 3D too.

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Vancouver Film School (VFS) Modeling Reel


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Peter, Bjorn & John - Up Against the Wall

Peter Bjorn & JohnUp Against the Wall is one of the stranger videos I've seen. Watch a guy getting food thrown at him over and over, then see it mirrored as the edit is repeated. Then, see it with other men get food Cap'n Crunch thrown at them. Then, confetti. Are these men Peter, Bjorn & John?

Anyway, the video credits Martin Arnold's technique.

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Friday, May 04, 2007

Apostle of Hustle - National Anthem of Nowhere

apostle of hustleDirected by Jeffrey St. Jules & Adrienne Amato, National Anthem of Nowhere is an interesting combination of rotoscoping and aging effects, and lots of cutouts, with some speech bubbles and misc. other components thrown in. The tearing effect around the guys on the deck is interesting. It's a really fun video.

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Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Justice - D.A.N.C.E.

This video has some really cool animating t-shirts, with some hard core tracking happening. Where do I get a shirt like that?!

Uploaded by edbangerrecords

Man, Motionographer always beats me to the cool videos. Justin is so fast!



Okay, not a piece of motion graphics, but this is a really cool "why didn't I think of that!" concept.

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