The search continues…

To complete the animations begun yesterday, we will meet again, same place, same time, different date…Sunday, 26 February.

In the mean time, here are a pair of stills…

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in search of lost things

what: 2 hour crash-course in stop-motion animation.

theme: discovering where the lost things live.

good to bring: a small object to animate, especially one that is so easily “misplaced” (such as a key or talisman) and a camera–not   required but would be nice.

time: 15:00-17:00

day: sunday, 12 feb

place: DingFabrik Köln e.V. (click here for directions)

token cost: 2 euros

together we will find backgrounds from old books to animate the lands these lost objects drift to…there is no need to draw unless you choose.

any questions? email mistercodfish@gmail.com

The Inspiration to Animate

The etymology of animation: from animō (“to animate” or “give life to”) + -ātiō (“the act of”)

Thus, animation is the the act of giving life to…something.  It is a way of approaching life, a philosophical viewpoint, that asks how you perceive the world around you.

We are taught that the world is divided into two categories: animate and inanimate, but we are not taught that every inanimate object has the potential to become animate…meaning that we have the power to give life to all those things in the world around us–things that we might perceive as “non-living.”

In this sense, we can begin to move through our world with heightened sensitivity and wonder, relating to each thing as a “You” not an “It” (see Martin Buber),in the same way that Buster Keaton moves through his filmic world (see Steamboat Bill Jr.).  Translating this idea  into an everyday reality is not as hard as one might think, for in the philosophy, there is also a technique: the technique of animation.

The learning curve to stop-motion animation is much less intimidating and/or overwhelming than other “art” forms.  You don’t have to draw, you don’t have to sculpt, you don’t have to write, you don’t have to know the right people–you just need yourself, your curiosity, and a little bit of patience.  Let the inner dialogue begin and uncover what it is you wish “to give life to.”  It could be a piece of fabric, or an old doll, perhaps a page from a picture book or a piece of cardboard that resembles a boat.  The idea will reveal itself to you and then it’s time to play.

Image Source:

NAVIGATOR, THE – Film director: KEATON, BUSTER – Year: 1924 – Stars: KEATON, BUSTER
Credit : M.G.M / Album / Universal Images Group

MARTIN BUBER (1878-1965). – Jewsih religious philosopher. Photographed in 1957.
Credit : The Granger Collection / Universal Images Group

animus mundi

This week I am screening a few videos in an installation and hosting some workshops during the PASSAGEN fair in Ehrenfeld-Köln.  I am extending a very warm invitation for you to join me at one of these workshops.  Below is a quick sum-up of what we will be talking about/making each session to pique your interest:

– Mon (16 Jan) THE SPIRIT TO ANIMATE: stop-motion animation

– Sat (21 Jan) DUALITIES: making thaumatropes

– Sun (22 Jan) VISUAL METAPHORS: making phenakistascopes

Everything will be in English and children are more than welcome to join (approx. age 9 & up, but if your child is 7 years old & is especially keen to come, that’s fine)  Naturally, if you don’t have children, I still want you to come because this is your chance to make optical toys, which are endlessly entertaining.  This is also marks one of the first events of The Collective Museum, so you will be part of history in the making.