March 02, 2015

'Beech Nut' by Alex Topaller & Dan Shapiro



A soft and elegant mixture of live action and frame by frame Flash animation.

Project: Beech Nut “Just Gentle Cooking”
Client: Beech Nut
Agency: Story Worldwide
Production Co / VFX: Aggressive
Executive Producer: Dan Shapiro
Directors: Alex Topaller, Dan Shapiro
Producer: Hillary Cutter
DP: Joe Arcidiacono
Production Designer: Pam Morris
Storyboard Artists: Rodier Kidman, Riccardo Albertini
Art Director: Rodier Kidman
Animation Lead: Riccardo Albertini
Additional Animation: Santi Agusti, Cristina Cappelletti
Compositing: Dan Shapiro, Santi Agusti
Color Grade: Rob Sciarratta
Sound Design: Wesley Slover
Music: Rhian Sheehan

Notes on the Making-of from their Behance site:

  • The live action kitchen setting was shot on a pre-built set in NYC.
  • Here's an insight on the animation process. Most of the animation was done straight in Flash
  • This is how the rocking pear and most of the animations were made, I first created a guide animation, then I drew it and added the dotted shading (yes, all the dots you see moving in the animation were hand placed) then I made the offset fill and matched the outline with the fill in After Effects.
  • Just some puffs, making this kind of stuff is pretty fun.
  • Some of the guides were made in Cinema 4D due to the nature of certain shots, which required 3D movement. Plus, making the conveyor belt in 3D with Cinema 4D was quick and easy.
  • I also modeled (better say sketched) the truck in a very simple 3D model, so that I could use it as a guide to be traced in Flash.
  • Here's the truck in Flash, where I was patiently tracing everything. Cinema 4D sketch and toon could have been a solution, but preliminary tests showed very synthetic results, while I wanted a very natural feel.
  • Working on the conveyor belt.
  • And this is the final result. As you can see most of the animations were done at 12 fps with some 24 occasionally, based on the motion.
  • Plenty of dots! Something important was to give the idea the points were place in a gradient-like design, to better represent the shading.
  • Making the sliced up pears was something different as some of the pieces had to move at different speed and framerates.
  • Here's how they look in the final composition.
  • One of the pears floating in the glass of water.
  • To be sure it was made with the right perspective and 3D volume, I made the oven knob in 3D before drawing it.
  • The pouring cream that filled the pot had to look thick and "creamy". It took me a while to get the right look.

'When I grow up I want to be a Tiger' - By An Vrombaut

Post #10,000!!!

Wow!!!
This post is just to say thank you to all of you!
This blog is at a point now that I get multiple emails every week, basically people just saying "thanks" and just giving their support, and at least one email everyday from someone sending me their film or video they've created or worked on. So I thought it was time to show my gratitude to all those who are sending me the messages of support and emails with links to fresh and original content.

9 year ago today, I started this silly little site, it was just meant to be a showcase of whatever little funny stuff I'd find on the interwebs. Through the years it became more focused on Illustration, Graphic Design, Motion Graphics, Cartooning, Character Design, Concept Art, Short Films, Artistic Inspiration, and The History of Filmmaking. But nowadays it's been more concentrated on exclusively showing off cool and interesting animated shorts and demo reels... with still the occasional animation news-related item and essays on the art of filmmaking, and animation tips & tricks.

Nine years ago it was very tough to find any short films, music videos, or commercials that were all animated, barely one per week would make it online for me to find and re-blog / re-post. Now, there's several per day, every single day; 2D-traditional/Flash, 3D-CG, stop-motion, puppets, visual-effects, and all the cross-pollenating & mixed-media genres that go with it. The volume of fantastic work produced daily is overwhelming. Before I had to search and search online in hopes to find them... but now often friends or the creators of the work themselves send me the links to their films and projects.

The amount of animated films, commercials and music videos produced every week is staggering.


The attendance these past 14 months have been steadily growing. I'm now at 2.6 million total hits on the blog.

In December 2013, when I wrote an article about The Incredibles, it unexpectedly went abit viral, and ever since then this blog's daily count got bumped up to a steady average of 2000+ visitors per day. This relentless flow of traffic is surprising and welcoming, I thank you all for the support shown and the steady interest displayed here everyday!

It's a wonderful and exhilarating time to be in the animation & visual effects industry for film and television. Filmmakers, creators, animators, designers of all sorts are sending Flooby Nooby their works, and I thank you all.

As always, this site is ad-free, and just a vehicle for showcasing cool and inspiring animations and knowledge about animation techniques, references, and the animation industry itself. I will endeavour to continue and create my own original content in the form of essays, dissertations, and manifestos, once in a while (when ever I can find the time with my busy schedule).

So thank you all for showing such enthusiasm for this site. Here's to 10,000 more posts to come over the next 9 years!