This is great John thanks. I have an off topic question...I learned there is a debate over the ball bounce in Preston Blair's instruction book, that it is wrong. Have you heard anything about this? What is your take?
There are a million ways to bounce a ball. Preston is just giving you a generic example.
The movement in this commercial is so fun! They're more lively than when real popcorn pops. I wonder if there is any connection to the design of that video game character Rayman with the similar floating hands and feet.
WOW!super fun! Super cartoony! I'm gonna go eat 40 year old popcorn now!Thanks!
Hey John,I'm person #2 guilty of off topic comment, so forgive me, but I'd like to share something with ya.Your blog (back when I could rummage through your archives) has absolutely inspired me. I'm just a student, with a serious drive for animation, and I'm in the middle of an computer graphics school who's administration doesn't give a shit about animation. Every year we showcase our work at this grand public showing (that eventually gets put on a DVD and shipped off to PIXAR), but the masses are getting tired of the same unappealing static renders every year. I've managed to successfully pitch an idea to the professor producing the show, to allow me and a team to develope a few short but sweet animation peices - in 2D even! I've also pitched the idea to a few of my peers who have the best drawing ability in our class. They liked it and are aboard.I've referred all of them to your blog, and my forefront picks of the team and I discuss a lot of what you post. I've been steadily working my way through the Preston Blair lessons, and I'm excited with the progress I've seen. I told evey one on the team to do the same.So John, I'm telling you all this, because I speak on behalf of my team and animation enthusiasts in general, that we would be super appreciative if you could throw us a bone every now and then. I'm going to start up a blog where we will post our drawing progress, concept art, model sheets, storyboards, layouts, key drawings, etc. So John, if we could have your blessing and perhaps a comment or two every now and then, you'd be more heroic than Powdered Toast man. --Rodrigo
Both of the Hubley commercials seem to relate to a comment you made about style and movement in 'Coal Black':"It's round and bouncy, has tons of overlapping action and is just super lively. It's a way of moving that can only be done in drawn cartoons and makes animation a world unique to itself.It's just automatically fun just by itself. But then in context of great gags, direction and pacing, it's thrilling.I wish real people could be so bouncy and floppy all the time-and there should always be a great jazz soundtrack happening behind you."After seeing both of these commercials, I'd say that Hubley was someone else who could appreciate the appeal of bounce even though his animators were drawing in a totally different style than the rounded/pear-shape 40s style of McKimson and Scribner. I'd say Hubley's commercials show that even with limited budgets you can still have lots of appealing musical movement in the same way that Art Lozzi's painting show similar possibilities with layout and colour.
I love these commercials! I just discovered the cartoon modern blog and the post on UPA style is so sweet, I LOVE the design and composition! It's my new favorite blog, next to yours.
Great stuff! Another commercial you can snap your fingers to ... they captured the quintissential aural elements of popcorn with the beat and the rhythmic visuals. We need more beat poets writing commercials nowadays!Thanks for another great blast from the past John!
I can see the inspiration for the 'Log' commercial. When Ren and Stimpy first aired on Aussie tv I thought I was watching an undiscovered cartoon from the 50's/60's, mind you I was about 11 at the time so I had know idea.You surely captured the essence of that era in the early episodes of Ren and Stimpy.
that commercial makes me want to eat popcorn. which i guess is the point, right? i love the way the animation is perfectly timed to the music. i also dig the alternating "sound waves" and popcorn kernels in the background. pretty great!
God bless you for posting this, John. I needed something to wash away that promo for that Adult Swim show at the top. This is infinately more inventive than anything those hipsters on acid can some up with. My faovurite part is teh end where they all bounce out with a starburst effect!>I wonder if there is any connection to the design of that video game character Rayman with the similar floating hands and feet. HEY YEAH!!! Holy crap!Maybe the reason you like UPA commericals better than their shorts is because a commercial forces you to do faster timing, therefore there are more ideas at once.
And I just finished eating a bag a Pop Secret tonight. :p
Sorry, off topic again. I think the thing with the Preston Blair ball bouncing that I noticed was that it doesn't have the same rule that I know of that you should have a frame of contact for the ball hitting the ground.I haven't really experimented with that works best, the way from the Richard Williams book etc where the ball makes contact or the Preston Blair way where you don't need it.That's the only way I can see it being different from how else it's taught.
Thanks for posting that great commercial. There is a spirit and (reaching for a Stephen Colbert word) cartooniness in these John Hubley ads that only shows up in flashes in the theatrical shorts.DVDS of the early 50's Colgate Comedy Hour shows have some very cool Shamus Culhane studio commercials. I haven't seen any as beautifully designed as this one, but check 'em out - there's Grim Natwick goodness to enjoy.
A great animated ad, with cool hep rhythm and lingo, Thurl Ravenscroft is great as the conservative cautious kernel. Who was the hep kernel? Was this aimed at Mommies and Daddies? Nope, aimed at teenagers and hip kids. Kind of daring for Madison Avenue if you think about it - a lot of parents still didn't care for rock and roll, bebop and beat culture, this ad might have turned them off the product. But it is a fun cartoon to watch and it does get the message across.What does anyone think of those eSurance ads onlin and on TV now?
I just finished watching Castle of Cagliostro on DVD. Fantastic.There's an interview on side B with animation director Yasuo Ohtsuka that was really quite good. He's 75 at the time of the interview and he talks a bit about the state of Japanese animation and how it's so different from 25 years earlier when he was working on the film. It's too "freeing" as he says in the studios in Japan. There's no pressue. No work ethic any more. He says there needs to be pressure and poverty for creativity to flourish. He says all the bosses make the decisions now. Artists just work to eat. The production houses tell you what to do. Lupin had a series before Cagliostro and it did poorly - only gaining 6% of the ratings in Japan. That was unacceptable and the show was cancelled. Nowadays shows only need .08% to stay on the air! The industry is oversaturated and bland even in Japan. After all this Mr. Ohtsuka says artists would have a better chance creating what they want in America. Really? I just thought that was interesting. Comparitively maybe it's true.He also talks about the differences between American and Japanese animation. How American's are entertainers and we cock our heads to the sides when we talk - making the comparisons to Japan where things are a lot more serious. He goes on to say there were no school for animation in Japan during his time and he learned from Preston Blair's book. He didn't read it - just copied it over and over. Again - really interesting to hear stories from the other side of the world and how they relate. I just hope he figured out the ball bounce ;)Thanks for lettin' me babble.
">I wonder if there is any connection to the design of that video game character Rayman with the similar floating hands and feet"I doubt Rayman was based off these... especially since he originated from a french studio. Michel Ancel, the Creator of Rayman, Gave Rayman no limbs because it was easier to animate on the older video game consoles. More animations with less sprites to take up memory.If Rayman has any inspiration I would say he was designed as a French version of Mickey Mouse.
One can readily appreciate how much less linear and literal, and how much more accepting the general audience must have been in the day this commercial was made.
Someday people will have to make that comment about ice cream, after the corporations have made it taste like poo.
Well sadly, if they put enough suger in it, poo-flavored icecream would still sell.Not as well as Butterscotch or Rocky Road... but corperate minds wouldnt know that because they are too busy making their poo quota for the year.
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