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Tag: pixar

Fred Patten asks: are “art of” animated movie books necessary?

by Patch O'Furr

Submitted by Fred Patten, Furry’s favorite historian and reviewer.

In June, my review of The Art of Cars 3 was posted here. In it, I said:

“It has been acknowledged that these “art of” books featuring animated films are money-losers, subsidized by the advertising budgets for those films, made for the promotion of those films and for the morale of the artists and technical crews that produced them. The Art of Cars 3 is full of the art of the animators, layout artists, production designers, story artists, digital renderers, graphic designers, modelers, and others who created Cars 3 .”

I had gotten that information – about the art-of animation books being money-losers that were published for their movie’s advertising and for their production staff’s morale – from a February 2017 story by Amid Amidi on the Cartoon Brew website. It was about Illumination Entertainment’s animated films — the Despicable Me franchise, The Secret Life of Pets, and Sing. The pertinent paragraphs were:

“Among the things that Illumination Entertainment does differently from other major animation studios is they don’t produce art-of/making-of books for each of their films.

From a business perspective, it makes sense. Most art-of books don’t make their money back, have limited reach, and add unnecessary costs to a film’s marketing budget. But they do have intangible benefits, like boosting morale among studio employees and helping build stronger relationships with the studio’s most passionate fans. I might agree that it doesn’t make sense to create an art-of book for every film, but perhaps Illumination could publish an anniversary art-of book at some point. Their tenth film is coming up in 2019, while 2020 will mark ten years since the release of their first film. Both of those dates seem like ideal milestones.”

April Whitney, the publicist at Chronicle Books for The Art of Cars 3, took exception to that statement. She said that Chronicle’s “art of” de luxe animation books, which cover most Disney•Pixar animated features, sell very well and are not, as I implied, subsidized by Disney’s marketing department.

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The Art of Cars 3, Foreword by John Lasseter – Book Review by Fred Patten

by Pup Matthias

Submitted by Fred Patten, Furry’s favorite historian and reviewer.

The Art of Cars 3. Foreword by John Lasseter. Preface by Brian Fee.
Introduction by Bill Cone and Jay Shuster.
San Francisco, CA, Chronicle Books, May 2017, hardcover $40.00 (167 [+ 1] pages), Kindle $16.19.

This is the official de luxe coffee-table art book of the Disney•Pixar animated film Cars 3, released on June 16, 2017. It presents sample storyboards, pastels, digital paintings, preliminary character designs, computer models, and more, usually in full color; plus research photographs of the actual racing cars and the Daytona Speedway that were a main inspiration for the 99-minute feature film.

It has been acknowledged that these “art of” books featuring animated films are money-losers, subsidized by the advertising budgets for those films, made for the promotion of those films and for the morale of the artists and technical crews that produced them. The Art of Cars 3 is full of the art of the animators, layout artists, production designers, story artists, digital renderers, graphic designers, modelers, and others who created Cars 3. As usual for these “art of” books, each piece of art is identified by its artist: Paul Abadilla, Grant Alexander, Bert Berry, Bill Cone, Craig Foster, Louis Gonzales, John Hoffman, Josh Holtsclaw, Katherine Kelly, Noah Klocek, Ivo Kos, Kyle MacNaughton, Scott Morse, George Nguyen, Bob Pauley, Laura Phillips, Jerome Ranft, Xavier Riffault, Tony Rosenast, Andrew Schmidt, Jay Shuster, Garret Taylor, J. P. Vine, and others.

In addition, there are quotes from these artists. “The film opens with an exuberant burst of racing, reintroducing McQueen at the top of his game. The goal was to immerse the audience in the excitement of racing and show the camaraderie between racers. It can be bewildering to know how to begin, but having a temporary piece of music helps set the tempo. Then I’ll thumbnail, usually discarding tons of shots until it starts to flow and build in the right way.” –JP Vine, story artist. (p. 25)

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Furry fans of indie animation, the Animation Show of Shows deserves your attention.

by Patch O'Furr

Co written by Patch and Fred Patten.

Happy Pride month!  Check out this short animation, Flamingo Pride.  It screened in the 2012 annual Animation Show of Shows, an international touring festival. Read on about why the festival deserves your attention, and what this means to furries.

Ron Diamond, producer of The Animation Show of Shows, contacted Fred Patten:

Dear Fred, I want to thank you for the great write up on The 17th Annual Animation Show of Shows. I was delighted about the kindness you extended to me and the filmmakers in covering an otherwise unorthodox medley of quirky international animated shorts. I’d be grateful if you can share this with your readers, to help build awareness of alternative animation that has a message that pleases and inspires. Warm regards, Ron

The 2016 Animation Show of Shows will be the 18th annual edition.  Fred has previously reviewed it for various animation websites (here’s reviews from 2013 and 2015.) Diamond is president of Acme Filmworks, an animation studio in Los Angeles that produces animated TV commercials in a wide variety of styles. His curation of the Animation Show of Shows is well known. It consists of about a dozen short films, some from big studios like Disney and Pixar, but most by independent animators and students from colleges around the world. Most or all are prize winners at international festivals.  Many have gone on to win next year’s Academy Award Oscar in the Short Film (Animated) category.  They show Diamond’s stellar record for predicting success.

Up to now, Diamond has shown this festival at major animation studios and animation colleges mostly in North America, but also in some other countries with large studios or chapters of ASIFA (Association Internationale du Film d’Animation; the International Animator’s Association). Now Diamond is trying to raise enough funding through a Kickstarter campaign to get it into theaters where it can be seen by the public.

What does it have to do with furry fandom?

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The Art of The Good Dinosaur – Book Review by Fred Patten.

by Pup Matthias

Submitted by Fred Patten, Furry’s favorite historian and reviewer.

good dinosaur coverThe Art of The Good Dinosaur. Foreword by John Lasseter. Introduction by Peter Sohn.
San Francisco, CA, Chronicle Books, November 2015, hardcover $40.00 (168 pages), Kindle $23.99.

Have we all seen Pixar Animation Studios’ November 2015 feature The Good Dinosaur? Good.

“All about” coffee-table art books about the making of an animated feature have evolved recently, and I don’t think it’s for the better. Where such as The Art of Puss in Boots or The Art of Mr. Peabody & Sherman used to be “by somebody”, full of background details by some expert, The Art of The Good Dinosaur has only two pages of writing; the very brief foreword by Pixar’s Chief Creative Officer John Lasseter and the movie’s director Peter Sohn. The book is presented to speak for itself. Frankly, compared to all of the earlier coffee-table animated-feature art books, it’s not enough.

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Special Features and Top Articles at Dogpatch Press.

by Patch O'Furr

Updated Feb 2018

  • Did you hear about President Obama’s meeting with furries?
  • Read interviews with movie directors from Pixar as well as the most devoted fans.
  • See how fursuits sell for $25,000 and the biggest furry convention draws $7 million in spending.
  • Furries in movies, on the front pages, at Burning Man, trending on Twitter, and more.

Dogpatch Press publishes every week day with over 800 articles so far.  These got high traffic, dug deep to uncover a story, or they’re just personal favorites.

_______________

INTERVIEWS FOR FANS AND FURRIES:

interviews

Makers and Doers make a subculture thrive. Whether they build it or feed it with stuff we like, they have valuable stories to tell.

FRED PATTEN PRESENTS:

Check his latest posts.  Fred is our star guest poster, with a long resume as fandom historian and reviewer.

FURSUITING, THE MOST FURRY ACTIVITY.

patch_icon_fursuitIt’s the the most original fandom creation, with it’s own coined name.  Nobody does it like furries, and nothing else represents us so directly as “ambassadors”. Fursuiting is a booming cottage industry and makers are raising the craft until they’re envied by commercial mascot designers. Only 20% own this costly wearable art with scene-stealing glamor, but a picture is worth a thousand words.  It’s hard to deny their huggable appeal (representing the touch-based name of this subculture!)

FURRY DANCE PARTIES – IT’S A MOVEMENT:furclub

Since around 2010, furry dance parties are getting established as urban night life.  They build on the growth of cons, but take their own direction in partnership with established venues.  Howl Toronto says – Con dances happen once a year, and “that’s just not enough to fill the need!”  

THE “FURRY ECONOMY”: 

economyFurry creators are working fan-to-fan with self-sufficiency that even supports full time careers. Cons are expanding at a healthy rate.  Furaffinity is an independent project acquired by a venture-capital funded company.  It’s rising beyond a full-fledged subculture to possible commercialization.  How will it develop?

“PALEO FURRIES” – ANTHROPOMORPHISM IN HISTORY:patch_icon_history

Fandom has hidden connections to a rich history of art and performance. A “museum of furry” could exhibit work that look like it’s from a parallel universe. Writer Phil Geusz calls it Paleo Furries. A “Panto-animals and Paleofurs” con panel could uncover hidden depth for what we love.

A THRIVING SUBCULTURE – PAST AND FUTURE.

ideasThere’s furry houses with multi-generations of fans. There’s a fur con somewhere in the world every weekend of the year. Here’s roots and coming opportunities for things that could be.

BAD MEDIA, GOOD MEDIA.

Media exploitation makes sensitivity about being in the spotlight, but it’s a chicken-or-egg relationship.  Rising recognition and appreciation brings power to negotiate and be better represented.

THE FURRY ART WORLD

It’s one of the most creative fandoms because all the content is self-generated.  Sometimes it gets recognition in galleries and more.

THE FURRY MOVIE SCENE.

Film and video can be more challenging than other media where furries thrive.  Other subcultures have developed enough to support independent film making. There have been a few attempts at furry features and some outside ones that come close. There are many fursuiting shorts (especially music videos) and animation student work. The holy grail might be a furry-made animated feature.

“CELEBRIFURRIES” AND STREET CRED:

Furries have more influence than they even realize. Advertisers covet the street cred of subcultures. Disney winked at us with Zootopia.  Are there mainstream celebrities who are secret furries?  How do other subcultures overlap?

ANTHROPOMORPHIC POLITICS OF THE WORLD.

Like Democrat donkeys, Republican elephants, or “Animal Farm” the political allegory by George Orwell.

FANDOM POLITICS.

CHARITY AND SUPPORT.

LIMITS AND LIBERTIES.

protestAcceptance is a big feature of furry subculture. It draws interests together, but nothing represents every member, because membership is self-defined.  Some interests get conservative disapproval. It makes tension between freedom and collective interest. It can involve prejudices, laws, or times for a social group to stand up for itself.

WHEN FURRY MEETS FURRY – “THE TOPIC THEY LOVE TO HATE”.patch_icon_furry_love

It’s not an urban legend – some furries get wild. But sex isn’t a definer.  It can be a family friendly hobby too.  Media hypes sex, but romantic themes are part of being human, and furries are just regular people with extra rich imaginations.  Being unusually open and expressive is required for an interest spectrum beyond the default.  It can cause controversy. It also makes first-time visitors call them the most friendly people you could ever party with. This blog is anti-prude and not shy about sex-positivity.

FURRY TRASH.

Sometimes it’s fun to mix satire and comedy with news.  Keep Furry Weird.

WHAT’S WRONG WITH FANDOM?

Furries have been punching-bags with sensational media exploiting them as freaks.  It can come from bias to only look for the worst in people. It can show stigma, shaming, scapegoating, or a streak of homophobia. But negativity doesn’t build anything, and that’s why it’s losing power with time. If you hear of “inherent” problems, look at the positive, expressive nature of the group.

CRIME AND PUNISHMENT:

Any community has crime, so it naturally happens with furries sometimes.  Most everything they do is harmless and positive, but rare problems can get sensationalized and it needs caution about bias.

SPECIAL GUEST POSTS BY PUP MATTHIAS:

MORE SPECIAL GUEST POSTS:

THE REGULAR NEWSDUMP (phased out):

See the “Newsdump” tag.  These digest posts had curated links and “list worthy” small stories from around the web and the border between subculture and mainstream.  They gave a look at the state of the community over time.

The Hero of Color City – animated movie review by Fred Patten.

by Patch O'Furr

Submitted by Fred Patten, Furry’s favorite historian and reviewer.

The Hero of Color City, directed by Frank Gladstone. 77 minutes. October 3, 2014.164396

Since I have already reviewed The Nut Job and Thunder and the House of Magic, I may as well review the third similar animated feature here: October 2014’s The Hero of Color City. I am reviewing it primarily to let you know about it, in case you want to see it. You’ve seen the Transformers movies, about anthropomorphized whatever-they-are’s. Now here are anthropomorphized crayons! You won’t get many opportunities to see anthropomorphized crayons.

I criticized most of the reviews of The Nut Job and Thunder and the House of Magic, which were very negative, as irrelevant because they judged the movie as an adult theatrical feature, whereas it was a children’s film. The Hero of Color City is for even younger children – preschoolers – and the reviews tend to be of two types. Those that do review it as kidnergarteners’ fare are generally positive. Those that review it for the parents who will accompany those kindergarteners are really negative. And I can’t say that I disagree with them.

Here is the plot synopsis from the review from Variety, October 2, 2014, by Geoff Berkshire:

“Lacking any of the visual sophistication customary in contemporary bigscreen toons, The Hero of Color City more closely resembles the by-the-numbers smallscreen product churned out overseas to fill time on countless tyke-oriented cable channels. The youngest members of the film’s target audience aren’t likely to care much about the lack of craft here, but grown-ups will immediately spot a generic rip-off and tune out accordingly. They won’t be missing much.

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Q&A with master animator Michel Gagne, part 2. Another in a series for fans and Furries.

by Patch O'Furr

TSOR_cover_700hgtDogpatch Press interview series:  Artists, animation directors, DJ’s and event organizers, superfans, and more…

Animator Michel Gagne talked about his movie, The Saga of Rex, in Part 1.  In Part 2, he says more about the movie and his overall career.  He also says that his 2004 Anthrocon Guest of Honor experience is the only Furry experience he’s had.  But there’s plenty of reasons to consider him a fan and inspiration to things we also love…

Michel Gagne Q&A, Part 2

 

(Patch) – Will the movie stick closely to the Saga of Rex graphic novel, or are you playing with adaptation?  

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Q&A with master animator Michel Gagne, part 1. Another in a series for fans and Furries.

by Patch O'Furr

Dogpatch Press interview series:  Artists, animation directors, DJ’s and event organizers, superfans, and more…

This week, animator Michel Gagne gets a two-part interview.  (Part 2 here.)  You may have seen his work on movies for Don Bluth, Warner, or Pixar.  He was Guest of Honor at Anthrocon 2004In 2012, Kickstarter backers pledged $57,875 towards his own animated movie, The Saga of Rex. The result was a 4:00 teaser, released in 2013 as progress towards the Rex movie.  

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