Jul 132016
 

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Come celebrate the re-launch of the Haptic Animation Amplifier website by watching a selection of animated short films from around the world. Curator Tess Martin is visiting from the Netherlands and bringing with her a charming program of animated shorts seen at film festivals, or discovered during her monthly animation discussion event she runs in Rotterdam called Manifest: Animation Show & Tell.

On August 8, 7PM, at the Grand Illusion Cinema, she will present the work of her non-profit Haptic Animation Amplifier, show off its revamped website (which now includes profiles on PNW animators, a timeline of animation in our region, and other useful info), and she will introduce you to inspiring independent animated shorts from Poland, Italy, France, Canada, Hungary and more. These films are innovative either in their technique, storytelling approach, or artistic point of view. They are sure to generate discussion and inspiration for the animator and animation fan alike.
This event is FREE to attend and was supported, in part, by an award from 4Culture.

Website announcement, Facebook event.

Rendezvous in a bar after the event!

Our favorite stop-motion films

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Jan 112016
 
Still from Anomalisa

Still from Anomalisa

Anomalisa opens in Seattle on January 15th (find it at AMC Pacific Place). This Charlie Kaufman-penned film has been hotly anticipated by film and animation fans alike, since it’s the screenwriter’s first foray into frame by frame puppet manipulation. Its release made us think about what are OUR favorite stop-motion films? Here is a sampling:

Sihanouk Mariona (freelance animator – who also worked for a short time on Anomalisa!) picks Birdhouse, by Rich Zim:

“Birdhouse, by Rich Zim, has been one of my favorites since i first saw it in college.  It’s one of those wonderful combos of both abstract and narrative that absorbs you into its surreal world right away. Through the relationship of a regular guy and his new friend, we explore the ups and downs of friendship, dependency, loneliness and the freedom of release. Basically, the life span of most relationships.  I think we can all find something to relate to in this short film, whether it’s from the characters, the story, or the wacky environment. A strong piece, Birdhouse is definitely worth seeing and including in any animation curriculum.”

Devin Ensz
(freelance animator) picks Food by Jan Svankmajer:

“My favorite stop motion film is “Food” by Jan Svankmajer.  I love Svankmajer’s radical and disruptive treatment of the human body through it’s relation to food.  Svankmajer is something of an animation terrorist.  Combining pixilation and claymation, Svankmajer offers a devastating critique of capitalist values while documenting the collapse of the communist system and it’s discontents.  His animation is always surprising and completely original, and there is literally nothing like it.”

Webster Crowell (animator/director, look out for his live action/animation combo webseries Rocketmen) picks The Immaculate Conception of Little Dizzle by David Russo:

“A lot of modern stop-motion is too clean, the motion and the models are so tidy they could just as easily be CG without the bother of building all the stuff. David Russo is a filmmaker who knew better, his films are energetic and impatient, he’s a director who gets why our eyes are drawn to stuttering images. His feature film (The Immaculate Conception of Little Dizzle) is a project that wouldn’t function in lesser hands, and the animation/time lapse opening titles are stupefying.”

Stewart McCullough (animator/photographer) picks Street of Crocodiles by The Brothers Quay:

“I’ve always been attracted to stop motion animation, however this was the film that opened my mind to its more mature and meaningful potential. I love the symbolic, surreal, and dreamlike quality of the worlds that the Brothers Quay create. The setting, the music, the animation style, and the mystery surrounding the main character in Street of Crocodiles drew me in deeply. Their cinematic approach is always satisfying to me.”


Clyde Petersen
(animator/director, currently locked in a basement producing his first feature length animation Torrey Pines) picks Jellyfish Eyes by Takashi Murakami:

 “Jellyfish Eyes is a magical, intense film about life post-tsunami & nuclear meltdown in modern day Japan. Combining live-action with drawn animation, a few giant muppet-style shaggy puppets and some psychedelic wave footage, Murakami creates an incredible story from the point of view of teenagers and youth, forced to grow up too fast. Jellyfish Eyes was just released on DVD in the USA.”

Tess Martin
(animator/founder of Haptic Animation Amplifier) picks Wallace and Gromit’s A Grand Day Out by Aardman:

“I tend to prefer flat animation techniques, like paper cut-outs or paint-on-glass, but when I do see stop-motion with puppets, I like to be able to tell that it’s stop-motion, I want to see the finger tips, the jitters. Aardman’s 1989 short film, A Grand Day Out, the first of the Wallace and Gromit series, has fingerprints a plenty, a simple yet joyful story, and adorable British-isms that fill the characters with personality. This would be followed by Wallace and Gromit’s The Wrong Trousers (1993) and and A Close Shave (1995), as well as their ground breaking interview-based Creature Comforts (also 1989).”

SEAT success at Short Run

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Nov 122015
 

The Seattle Experimental Animation Team was happy to take part in the Short Run Comix & Arts Festival on Halloween in Seattle. We set up a tent, showed films inside and had a great time. Special thanks to James Webber for spearheading this year’s endeavor. Until next year!

Setting up the tent. Photo by James Webber.

Setting up the tent. Photo by James Webber.

Setting up the table. Photo by James Webber.

Setting up the table. Photo by James Webber.

The Short Run hall. Photo by Alex Stonehill/Short Run.

The Short Run hall. Photo by Alex Stonehill/Short Run.

Attendees waiting in line. Photo by Alex Stonehill/Short Run.

Attendees waiting in line. Photo by Alex Stonehill/Short Run.

Seattle animator and graphic novelist Bruce Bickford at his table. Photo by Alex Stonehill/Short Run.

Seattle animator and graphic novelist Bruce Bickford at his table. Photo by Alex Stonehill/Short Run.

SHORT RUN 2015

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Oct 272015
 

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Comics and animation go together like peanut butter & jelly, am I right or am I right. Which is why SEAT has always had an animation tent at the SHORT RUN Comix & Arts Festival. We are going to have a mixture of animations from SEAT members, SHORT RUN exhibitors and an excerpt from Bruce Bickford’s Cas’l, plus Jim Woodring’s 3D slides, about 80 minutes of visual delights! We also have a late additional to the program, a collection of visual poetries called WRIT LARGE curated by FICTILIS, that runs about 30 minutes. Did I mention the festival is free!

Showtimes:

11 AM : SEAT Members’ Shorts

NOON : Exhibitors’ Shorts

12:30 : WRIT LARGE

1:00 : Bruce Bickford’s CAS’L’ (6 min. excerpt)

1:30 : Jim Woodring’s 3D Slides

2:00 : SEAT Members’ Shorts

3:00 : Exhibitors’ Shorts

3:30 : WRIT LARGE

4:00 : Bruce Bickford’s CAS’L’ (6 min. excerpt)

4:30 : Jim Woodring’s 3D Slides

5:00 : SEAT Members’ Shorts

5:30 : Coldbrew Collective’s Horror Film Video-Mix

We will see you there.

Stop Motion Animation Clinic in Olympia

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May 042015
 

Member Mari Ichimasu and the team from her current stop motion animation project “Sanpomichi” are hosting an event called “Stop-motion animation Clinic” in Olympia on Mother’s day. Bring your mom!

5 / 10 (sunday) 3pm Free @ Voyeur Cafe, Olympia WA

They will be showing the teaser trailer for Sanpomichi, give “how to” and “how we do” presentations.  Sets, props and puppets will all be on display for hands on learning.

FB event page
Sanpomichi

 

Stopmotionclinic

 

 

 

Feb 162015
 

The Seattle Experimental Animation Team has been working really hard that last few days on our new gallery show at the Archer Gallery in Clark College in Vancouver, WA, outside Portland, OR. The show is called Sequestered Together: The Dangerous and Lonely World of Animation and the opening is tomorrow, February 17th!

The show is an elaborate collection of short films, music videos, giant spinnable zoetropes and making-of detritus (still frames from drawn animations, puppets, sketches, etc.) from Seattle animators. Represented animators are: Clyde Petersen, Stefan Gruber, Britta Johnson, Webster Crowell, Neely Goniodsky, Ian Obermuller, Devin Ensz, Komari Ichimasu, Joe Garber, Salise Hughes, Sarah Jane Lapp, Chris Looney and Tess Martin.

The opening is Tuesday, February 17th, 5PM-8PM and at 5:30PM a guided walk by some of the animators will take place. The show is up until March 14th! Here is the Facebook event. What a great opportunity for the Portland area animators to mingle with the Seattle animators!

And check out this post from the Phoenix, the Clark College Literary & Art Journal, about the show.

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Feb 132015
 

Back in April 2013 we premiered our second collective film at Zeitgeist Coffee in Pioneer Square – this one was based on the 1960 Little Shop of Horrors! It’s finally made its way online. Enjoy this animated re-interpretation by, in order: Eric Ostrowski, Tess Martin, Charlie Daugherty, Timothy Firth, Tim Miller, Stefan Gruber & Aaron Wendel, Clyde Petersen and Salise Hughes.

The Little Shop of Animated Horrors from SEAT on Vimeo.

Britta Johnson in the back room…

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Feb 052015
 

SEAT animator Britta Johnson has work up in “In the Absence Of…,’ a group show at Greg Kucera gallery in Seattle. The show goes through February 14th; this Saturday there’s a performance/art talk which will include music by Nat Evans and John Teske and discussion with other artists (including Britta) in the show. More info below:

https://www.facebook.com/events/432918390195248/?pnref=story

 

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SEAT collective film screens in San Francisco on Friday!

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Jan 242015
 
Two stills from Exquisite Corpse (2012): ‘Man with Beard’ prompt interpreted by Salise Hughes and Clyde Petersen.

Two stills from Exquisite Corpse (2012): ‘Man with Beard’ prompt interpreted by Salise Hughes and Clyde Petersen.

Back in 2012 SEAT made its first collective film, a ‘Re-Animated’ Exquisite Corpse experiment which premiered at Zeitgeist Coffee at a Pioneer Square Art Walk event. This eight minute film was animated by Otto Bulut, Tess Martin, Eric Ostrowski, Stefan Gruber, Salise Hughes, Clyde Petersen and Webster Crowell. We’re so excited that it will screen in San Francisco at the Artists’ Television Access on Friday, January 31st. It will precede another Exquisite Corpse film led by experimental filmmaker Salise Hughes, who enlisted the talents of 12 other filmmakers from across the country. This one is called EXquisite Corpse Cinema: EX#3. Congratulations, Salise!

You can see the full 8 minute SEAT Re-Animation Exquisite Corpse on vimeo.

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Strange Creatures tour Europe!

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Jan 032015
 
Still from Drew Christie's Song of the Spindle

Still from Drew Christie’s Song of the Spindle

It’s been more than a year since the premiere of Strange Creatures: Contemporary Independent Animation from Seattle in August 2013.

Since that fateful day the program, comprised of 10 animated shorts from Drew Christie, Stefan Gruber, Britta Johnson, Clyde Petersen, Webster Crowell, Tess Martin and Bruce Bickford, has screened in Vienna, Budapest, Prague, Amsterdam (twice!), Brussels, Oldenburg and Ljubljana. Programmer Tess Martin has been able to present the program at every screening so far, and in some cases she has curated a short Act 2 of local films to complement the film. This has ensured that lots of local animators and fans have attended the screenings and been introduced to the Seattle scene. Here is a full list of the screenings so far:

EUROPE:
Ljubljana, Slovenia: ANIMATEKA International Animated Film Festival, Dec 8-14, 2014
Oldenburg, Germany: zwergWERKchen, Nov 30, 2014
Amsterdam, the Netherlands: Fay’s Film Festival, Free Fringe Festival, Sept 7, 2014
Brussels, Belgium: Cinema Nova, April 18th, 2014
Amsterdam, the Netherlands: OT301, presented by the A/V Club, April 13th, 2014
Prague, Czech Republic: Kavarna Liberal, March 11, 2014
Budapest, Hunagary: Moholy-Nagy University of Art and Design, March 5, 2014
Vienna, Austria: Under the Radar Animation Symposium, TopKino, March 1, 2014

NORTH AMERICA:
Seattle, USA: NW Film Forum, August 3, 2013

Below is a selection of documentation of the European screenings. To keep up to date with Strange Creatures news, check here or with the portion of Tess’ website devoted to it. Email Tess at tess[@]tessmartinart.com to bring this program to your venue!

In this interview for the Animateka festival Tess Martin talks about the differences in animation scenes between the US and the Netherlands, SEAT, the Strange Creatures program, and specifically Bruce Bickford!

Animateka International Animated Film Festival, Photo courtesy of Animateka

Animateka International Animated Film Festival, Ljubljana, Slovenia, December 2014, Photo courtesy of Animateka

Tess Martin answering questions about Strange Creatures from Animateka festival director Igor Prassel. Photo by Andrej Firm

Tess Martin answering questions about Strange Creatures from Animateka festival director Igor Prassel, December 11, 2014. Photo by Andrej Firm

Strange Creatures film details in the Animateka program

Strange Creatures film details in the Animateka program, Ljubljana, Slovenia, December 2014.

Strange Creatures programs and zwergWERKchen program at the CineK cinema in Oldenburg, Germany, Nov 30, 2014

Strange Creatures programs and zwergWERKchen program at the CineK cinema in Oldenburg, Germany, Nov 30, 2014

Poster for Amsterdam screening, sponsored by A/V Club, April 13, 2014  (Poster by Helena Sanders)

Poster for Amsterdam screening, sponsored by A/V Club, April 13, 2014 (Poster by Helena Sanders)

OT301, venue for the Strange Creatures screening in Amsterdam, hosted by the A/V Club, April 2014

OT301, venue for the Strange Creatures screening in Amsterdam, hosted by the A/V Club, April 2014

Cinema Nova, Brussels, Belgium, host of a Strange Creatures screening in April 2014

Cinema Nova, Brussels, Belgium, host of a Strange Creatures screening in April 2014

Strange Creatures information in the Cinema Nova program, Brussels, Belgium, April 2014.

Strange Creatures information in the Cinema Nova program, Brussels, Belgium, April 2014.

A map of locations on Tess Martin's March 2014 tour - she presented Strange Creatures in Vienna, Budapest and Prague.

A map of locations on Tess Martin’s March 2014 tour – she presented Strange Creatures in Vienna, Budapest and Prague.