Monday, February 12, 2007

Animation Workshop Graduation

The Animation Workshop here in Viborg, Denmark just celebrated their first graduating class of Bachelor Degree students. It's a big deal for the school, and it was exciting to be here for it.

Here they are being really really excited about it. That's Morten Thorning in the middle with the grey beard. He's the director of the school. I've mentioned him before.

I attended the commencement ceremonies which was mostly a screening of the students' bachelor projects. It was fairly informal but sadly some things are universal, so there were quite a few people who got up to give speeches. These were all in Danish, of course. If you think the last commencement speech you had to sit through was boring, imagine that you couldn't understand a single fucking word and still had to sit there still and quiet for an hour. Man!

Then Michelle Nardone got up and gave her speech including a shout out to my good friend David Tart! Michelle being American, it was in English, thank god! Then she presented the films.

There's a sampling of the films here. But I just want to mention two that I really liked...

The first is called "Dharma Dreameater" by Rasmus L. Møller and Edda Hron Kristunsdottir. It's about a witch who rides her magic vacuum around sensing when children are having bad dreams and flying to them to vacuum up the monsters. They used 3d animation to create this wonderful pop-up book style for the whole piece, then animated the characters in traditional 2d. Really imaginative, and really appealing.

The second one (and this was really the crowd favorite) is "Hum" by Søren Bendt Pedersen. Søren produced it almost completely by himself. The story is of a robot, lonely in (presumably) his creator's worshop. It's incredible in detail and quality and is about 8.5 minutes long. That's huge for an individual project, and the results are stunning.

Also worth mentioning were "Monsters from the Id", which you can watch here in it's entirety, "Fishing with Spinoza" (hilarious) and "Cafe' Rendezvous" (also available to view). Check 'em out!

Next post... the celebration. With chair smashing.

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