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The Quest for the Holy Grail

The ancient legend, retold through the traditional medium of second-hand television.

This was made in 2000. At the time  I was being inspired by Plunder-phonic music, specifically Negativland, and I wanted to see if I could create a visual equivalent.

It was one of my student films at the RCA, and also one of my first attempts at computer animation. Strangely enough, I didn’t use After Effects for this; I used Photoshop to create frame-by-frame animation, and then compiled it all in Premiere. The second-hand TV clips were grabbed and digitised from VHS tapes.

Ah, the comedy of naivety and inexperience.

 

The Quest for the Holy Grail from James Merry on Vimeo.

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My Song

Check out Charlie Swinbourne and William Mager’s new film about a deaf teenager caught in-between the deaf and hearing worlds.  I think it’s great!

[Disclaimer: I made the fake animated Facebook page sequences in it, and some of the titles. And the big spinning CD at the start 🙂 ]

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A Tree! In Battersea Park!

Pen and ink drawing of a tree, in Battersea Park
A Tree in Battersea Park

The first pen and ink drawing I’ve done in a while… Now the summer is here, I’ve decided to make it my mission to draw as many trees as I can during my lunch breaks, before the weather goes all rubbish again. Here is the first tree of probably not that many…

Progress of tree drawing over over time, shown in a series of 12 consecutive photos
This drawing took me about 12 lunch breaks to complete

 

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Stupid Bird No.83

It’s been a while since I’ve last looked at this on-going side-project, but I’ve finally managed to get round to doing another Stupid Bird. Only another million left to do now.

Stupid Bird; No.83 from James Merry on Vimeo.

Stupid Bird No.84
Stupid Bird No.084
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Shape Layer Doodling

Keyed and auto-traced video footage, and converted into shape layer paths. Crazy-wide strokes, and thin dashes to cause glitchy Moire effect, and a fill layer on top with a difference transparency. Voila!

Personally I really like the look of this. I’m not sure what a practical use of it might yet be though…

Doodling with Shape Layers from James Merry on Vimeo.

More Shape Layer Sheninigans from James Merry on Vimeo.

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Cor

Cor from James Merry on Vimeo.

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Shop!

I’m selling drawings on Etsy.
http://www.etsy.com/shop/JamesMerry

More to come soon!

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Toes!

Here is a silly animation we’ve just made at SquintOpera

Toes from squintopera on Vimeo.

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The Same Pine Cone, but from a Different Angle

The Same Pine Cone, but from Different Angle
The Same Pine Cone, but from Different Angle

Yup, I’ve drawn another pine cone. They’re good things to draw actually; Easy to get lost within their folds and shadows and crinkly bits, although it can be tricky remembering which sticky-out bit I’m drawing at any one time.

Here are some photos of the drawing at different stages of completion…

First find your pine cone. Put it somewhere where it won't be moved.
First find your pine cone. Put it somewhere where it won't be moved.
Sketch out initial outlines. Do this quite quickly to get an overall sense of geometric shape without getting bogged down in detail.
Sketch out initial outlines. Do this quite quickly to get an overall sense of geometric shape without getting bogged down in detail.
Quickly block out the areas of shadow and light.
Quickly block out the areas of shadow and light.
Start layering on more hatching to suggest variations in shading and tone.
Start layering on more hatching to suggest variations in shading and tone.
Continuing hatching away to bring out detail, light and shading. Hatch, hatch, hatch! Hours of fun.
Continuing hatching away to bring out detail, light and shading. Hatch, hatch, hatch! Hours of fun.
Be careful not to spill ink all over the nearly completed work. That would be a disaster. Or art.
Be careful not to spill ink all over the nearly completed work. That would be a disaster. Or art.
Tada! And the drawing is finally complete. I've probably overdone it on the hatching actually, but never mind. I had fun. Hatching can be addictive.
Tada! And the drawing is finally complete. I've probably overdone it on the hatching actually, but never mind. I had fun. Hatching can be addictive.
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More Unplugged Artwork

Here’s another pine cone

Pine cone in black ink
Pine cone in black ink