Home > Digital Design, Fun Stuff, Uncategorized, Video > Blade Runner Watercolor Animation

Blade Runner Watercolor Animation

This animation is made of 3285 aquarelle paintings and form the very beginning of my paraphrase on the motion picture Blade Runner (1982) by Ridley Scott.
The sound is borrowed from the original movie.  -Anders Ramsell

Rotoscoping has been on the rise, creating an overlap of fine art, animation and video.  The easy access to computers, projectors and digital media makes frame by frame progression very easy to set up.  The above video by Anders Ramsell uses a loose watercolor painting style to interpret scenes from the science fiction classic film Blade Runner.  This is also an overlap of popular culture and fine art.  It is interesting to see a large rotoscoping work by one artist.  There are a few frames per second, each being hand painted, but this work in unbelievably labor intensive.  Old hand-painted Disney animation or works like Akira were the top of the industry standard hitting up to somewhere around 25 – 28 frames per second – the maximum possible and still maintain the persistence of vision for the illusion of motion in animation without freezing.  If I looked, I could probably find the math formulas for speed of movement, character placement and frames per second.  It was teenage obsession of mine.  I had hoped to get my hands on a 16mm camera with stop motion capabilities but I was never able to find one in the 80s.

I also have been watching The Johnny Cash Project evolve and get bigger.  The richness and fascination of that work comes from the over quarter of a million people that have created drawings for the video.  Collaboration does make the work pull together faster.  This refers me back again to William Kentridge with his evolving charcoal drawings and photographing them as the are made and modified to pull together into a fine art based animation.  If I were to rotoscope something into physical media by myself, I would want to mount a projector above a table and create a registration system to keep each art work-as-frame in alignment.  Then I would have to drink a case of pop daily for a few weeks and do in-patient rehab for caffeine detox.  It’s a possibility.  I still have three ideas on deck for Scratch were I made my first cartoon [all digital] and/or to work as a Flash animation or interactive piece.

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