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Two Awesome Worlds Collide April 19, 2010

Posted by leskanturek in 3-D work, Animation, Film, Music, Student Blog posts, Student Post, Surreal.
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Post by Grace Lang


In recent months, I have been watching a lot of music videos, specifically ones that feature dope-ass animation. It was sensational to realize that there are so many places for illustration within the music realm because jams, tunes, and diddies inspire most of us in some way or another.   SO…I wanna share what I’ve found!

Chad Vangaalen is a musician from Canada whose music I got into during high school. A few months ago, a friend showed me one of his music videos and I realized that he is actually an incredible illustrator and animator as well.  I think its pretty amazing when a person can master music and visual art. TOUGH STUFF. Here is a still from that video…it is called “Molten Light” and the song is off his album, “Soft Airplane.” The link to watch it on youtube is below the photo.



In 2009, Chad released an album under the alias, Black Mold, called “Snow Blindness is Crystal Antz.” It doesn’t feature lyrics like his other stuff, but is effin incredible anyway. Here is a still and link to a video for the song, “Metal Spiderwebs.”



Seriously, y’al. All his videos are phenomenal and totally worth checking out, SO DO IT.

NEXT UP is a bitchin claymation video for the Grizzly Bear (a Brooklyn-based folk rock group) song, “Ready, Able,” off the album, “Veckatimest.” The guys in the band didn’t make the video, as they aren’t animators like Mr. Vangaalen . This video is unbelievable and inspiring. I like it because it seems like a new approach to a somewhat common form of animation (claymation). The way it mixes media is especially fresh. Again, here is a still and a link:



The last video I want to share is from a band called Ramona Falls and it’s for their song, “I Say Fever.” Ciara, another  student in the illustration Dept., showed me this video and I am infinitely grateful because not only is it one of the best things I have EVER seen, but it also exposed me to a great new band. (I bought the album. SO GOOD.) The band is based in Portland, Oregon and their first/only album is titled, “Intuit.” This video is super different from the others. It doesn’t have as much of a hand-drawn feeling as Chad Vangaalen’s stuff, but there’s no disputing that it’s an insane and beautiful concept. I am drawn (PUN SO INTENDED) to it mostly because it fuses so many things that I like together: intricate line-work, bizarre imagery, good color choices, and ANIMALS. It’s also really nice to see something that was clearly manifested on the computer, but doesn’t feel super technology-y.




Oh, and another thing. When I got this album, I was overjoyed to realize that one of my long-time favorite illustrators, Theo Ellsworth, did the album artwork. This made me really happy because he’s beyond brilliant and I am glad to see he is getting such cool jobs. Here is the album cover and I highly suggest looking up more of his work. His book, “Capacity,” is especially inspiring.

Moving Paper March 3, 2010

Posted by leskanturek in 3-D work, Animation, Movable Illustration, Music, Student work.
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The Museum of Arts and Design located at 2 Columbus circle in NYC, collects and documents craft, art and design. Presently MAD is hosting Moving Paper, the cut-paper animation film festival  and competition. Inspired by the exhibition Slash: Paper under the KnifeMoving Paper celebrates the use of cut paper in animation,
Two  videos made by Illustration major (and class member) Brianne Bowers have been accepted  on the Moving Paper site. Take a look :


“I Got Those Illustration Blues…” February 20, 2010

Posted by leskanturek in Class Discussions, Class Topics, Music, Visually Cool & Relevant.
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Who says you have to suffer to sing the blues?  All you really need is the appropriate angst ridden name. Preferably your blues name has a physical ailment attached to it  ie:  Blind Lemon Jefferson, Blind Blake (a fantastic ragtime guitarist by the way) or Cripple Clarence Lofton to name a few.

Stop! You don’t have to grab a straight razor and rush into that fight over color theory to earn street cred. All you really have to do is use the Blues Name Calculator (as our class did) in the safety of your own home.

Replace your existing non-dangerous sounding blues name of  “Couch Potato Jackson” or “Bent Crow Quill Davis”   with a more authentic, nasty sounding  moniker.   The art world loves bad boys and gals.

Hey Les, looks like I’m “Pretty Bones Smith” ha ha, I don’t even want to know how I got that nickname…
-Lyejm Kallas-Lewis

Jailhouse Bones Washington -ahhahahahahahhahahahahaha – Masuko Jo

I’m Sleepy Back Lee, but I like to think of myself more as a Ptera Dac Toasty. I’m not sure if that’s a blues names though……or just five syllables I like that I put together. -Pratima Mani
From now on I will be called Boney Gumbo Rivers –  Joseph Herrington

“Pretty Gumbo Green“…I like it!  -Leila Ehtesham

In the blues world I’m known as “Boney Bones Jones” –  John Garcia

Ugly Eyes Lee 😀 – Grace Moon
HAHA!!!!   My blues name is “Old Eyes Lee” I’m really not sure how my initials gave the calculator that answer but it’s cool! -Debo Mouloudji
Mine is “Crippled Bones Jones” How awesome is THAT???!! -Ciara Gay
“Skinny Fingers Dupree” = me -Rosemary Davis


“Crippled Back Bradley”   …haha Chelsey Pettyjohn


I’m “Pretty Badboy Smith”  hmmmm….I wonder if that could be Prof. Badboy-Smith?  I always thought of myself as a “Ox neck Johnson“, “Weak bladder Philips” or even Blind # 2 Pencil Russell? -Les


My Blues name:  “Crippled Legs Bailey”. OMG!  I hope that isn’t foreshadowing.. – Christine Westrich

Feist + Old Trout= Honey Honey February 18, 2009

Posted by leskanturek in 3-D work, Music, Puppets, Student Post, Theatre.
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by Gigi Gray

Canadian singer-songwriter  Feist teamed up with Judd Palmer’s  Alberta based Old Trout Puppet Workshop to make the video of her song Honey Honey (from the album The Reminder).  Palmer’s dreamy puppet visuals are a perfect accompaniment to Feist’s soft and evocative music, and together the  video comes across in a most magical way.



It begins with the  singer lighting a match, unveiling this other world in which an old sea-man’s  journey is put in peril  by the presence of a sea monster. Meanwhile, the seafarers wife awaits at home fearing his interminable voyage. The puppets are so expressive and seem human like evoking real emotions with such exaggerated features. The images and visuals marry well together as they both move in this haunting harmony that really captivate the viewer.  The video was directed by Anthony Seck.

1feist-honeyhoney1(Above) The old fisherman

picture-2(Above) His wife in the lighthouse

storm(Above) The storm at sea


(Above) The monster fish

I think puppetry and music  are perfectly suited for one another. Both can be very effective at telling tales.  Music videos are often portrayed as stories even if the lyrics of the song aren’t narrative. Lyrics to songs may not always be narrative, most often are not, but many like the approach of creating a story within a song to really capture and keep the viewers attention. It makes the song slightly more tangible. Viewers  can identify and relate to  characters, and situations.

Feist comes from a visual arts background. Her father, is an abstract painter, and her mother studied ceramics. Some kind of  appreciation for puppets seems a logical, it would be interesting to know how much she (Feist) was involved in the making of, or conceptualizing  the video.

The video for Honey Honey can be viewed on youtube here. Also here is the link for the Old Trout Puppet Workshop

Shockheaded Peter January 13, 2009

Posted by leskanturek in 3-D work, Music, Puppets, Theatre, Visually Cool & Relevant.
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(Above) Julian Bleach, Co-creator of Shockheaded Peter and the M.C.


(Above) Julian Bleach (in background) and Tamzin Griffin (on ground, also a co-creator of SHP). Photo by © Joan Marcus (from the site New Partisan http://www.newpartisan.com/home/a-glorious-gory-grotesque.html )

Shockheaded Peter is a musical adaptation based on the German children’s book, Der Struwwelpeter (Slovenly Peter) by Dr. Heinrich Hoffmann. The original book was comprised of 10 stories about children, who, because of their bad habits or misbehavior meet dire consequences in gruesomely moralistic fashion. Shockheaded Peter chronicles those stories of bad children in a wonderfully disturbing production that incorporates pantomime, puppetry and elements of Grand Guignol theatre, children get their thumbs cut off (for sucking them), are burned as their comeuppance for playing with matches and much worse. There really aren’t any survivors. All this  to music by the Tiger Lillies. Shockheaded Peter on You Tube


(Above) Anthony Cairns (left co-creator) and Tamzin Griffin. Photo by © Joan Marcus (from the site New Partisan http://www.newpartisan.com/home/a-glorious-gory-grotesque.html )

h_hoffmann_struwwel_01(Above) Interior illustration from the 1917 edition of Struwwelpeter


Above) Struwwelpeter and Other Disturbing Tales for Human Beings Illustrated by Bob Staake Published by Fantagraphics Books 2006.

sarita(Above) Struwwelpeter: Fearful Stories and Vile Pictures to Instruct Good Little Folks Illustrated by Sarita Vendetta. Published by Feral House Books 1999 Out of Print. Sarita Vendetta’s illustrations for Struwwelpeter.


(Above Left) Slovenly Betsy by Henry Hoffman ? Published 1911. (Right) Struwwelhitler by “Dr. Schrecklichkeit” Published 1941