Suburban Boredom At It’s Finest

Such a clever Type in Motion piece and one of the more advanced ones that I’ve looked at. I’ve talked a lot about getting basic principles to work before jumping into more advanced forms of type in motion. I just love this video because it’s complicated and IT WORKS. There are tones of different typefaces, but they all have a purpose and effects although many are used for a REASON. They typefaces all mimic big box stores and familiar brand names, which is perfect for the subject matter because it’s about a couple who just go to live this boring suburban life. Letting consumerism and commercialism take over and playing off pop culture keeps the very busy video familiar and easy to follow. The viewer recognizes half the images already so we’re not processing new information. It just makes things much more interesting by using the same typefaces as the brands that he’s singing about in the music.

Adding in backgrounds can also be a BIG challenge especially working with so many styles of type and textures as you have in this video. Again, he’s done it in a very clever way. As well, he uses the background to create secondary imagery and animations turning the type on it’s own into other things such as a freeway sign rather than just free standing type. (0:09)

The Camera angles and motions are all very intuitive and work well with the beat of the music and the timing of the lyrics. Not easy to achieve. (0:06)

Two of my favourite sequences are at (0:13) and (0:21) simply because they are intuitive and the camera works at the right speed with the music to still be able to follow along. As well as the cropping and angles work really well.

The best part of the video in my opinion is the chorus, just because the animation and the type all work really well together with the timing of the music. Also the background, with the details of the coffee stain on the paper as if the husband was working away in the garage is just such a great detail. I think it’s also great that he repeats the sequence because there is a lot going on and it really let’s you appreciate all the interesting things that are happening in his video.

I just love it, possible my most favourite Type Video yet!

Shop Vac

Shop Vac

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Inglourious Basterds Kinetic Typography

Another one of my favourite Kinetic Typography Videos. I really love the aesthetic of this video. It suites the subject matter. I also love the style of illustration, type and colour palet, all these elements are superb in this video. The illustration is used sparingly, and it’s placed only in sequences that enhance the type.

One of the strongest elements of this video is the timing to the sound. It is right on key with the type and animation movement. The camera angles are also done exceptionally well in 3D space(0:16) and the camera movements including the panning make the story stronger. It’s not overkill however, things are only placed in 3D space and in motion if it makes sense with the story line.

I also love the extreme cropping of the typography, it’s commanding like the speech and it really is done just the right amount.I like that the designer is not afraid to push the boundaries of the screen (0:38). After all the subject matter is all about pushing boundaries and doing something incredibly fearless and unconventional. There are parts that the type moves fairly fast because of the pace of the speech, so without sound, it may be difficult, but with the sound, you can follow it quite well.

The planes is also something that I haven’t noticed as much in other kinetic type videos, but this one does some really interesting things with the maps and playing on depth of field using planes in his animation window. It really effective for giving the illusion that the viewer is moving with the troops through the story on their journey. It’s really brilliant (0:42).

Inglorious Basterds Kinetic Typography

Inglorious Basterds Kinetic Typography

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A Simple Lesson From Saul

I can’t have a blog that heavily focuses on motion graphics and kinetic type without paying tribute to arguably one of the best motion graphic and film designers of all time Saul Bass. Saul’s early film titles were major markers of modernity. He was one of the key designers that brought Abstract Expressionism to the forefront and to such a wide audience because it was done through films. The thing that is so striking about Saul’s work is that it is wonderfully simplistic yet extremely innovative. Even non designers and film makers of later generations are familiar with his movie titles. His work proves that the only form of TRUE sustainable design is well thought out, long-lasting design.

To take a brief overview of a few of Saul’s major titles, allows us to see why he was a “god.” It’s a reminder, and example to show that with all the great technology out there, great creation comes back to basics. Technology should only be used to assist in a design, it shouldn’t ever lead it. I’m only going to quickly discuss my favourite, but I’ve included other images for your viewing pleasure.

Anatomy of a Murder
The title sequence is one of Saul’s most simple and most successful. It seems almost too effortless between the integration of text, image and sound. Again, it comes back to simplistic strong ideas. They symbol for the film forms and falls apart in synchronization with the music, while the bold white credits over the black fragments add another layer of contrast. Saul used the music, a contemporary jazz score, that had a staccato and fragmented style and paired it with fragmented body parts which was obviously a fitting compliment to the movie subject.

In the title, the various pieces of the segmented figure form quickly into a total configuration and then after, the arms, legs, head, body and hands pop on and off with the various credits. The sequence ends with a pair of hands wich appear quickly, jump forward and obliterate the screen to black.

Hopefully you will recognize the other titles pictured below and if not…you should check them out!

Anatomy of Murder Saul Bass

Anatomy of Murder Saul Bass

Anatomy of Murder SAUL BASS

Advise & Consent SAUL BASS

Advise & Consent SAUL BASS

Bonjour Tristesse SAUL BASS

Bonjour Tristesse SAUL BASS

The Man With The Golden Arm SAUL BASS

The Man With The Golden Arm SAUL BASS

The Frank Sinatra Show SAUL BASS

The Frank Sinatra Show SAUL BASS

Simple Yet Effective

One thing that I’ve learned about motion graphics and online animated videos in general, is that you don’t have to be an award winning artists or a master illustrator to make engaging entertaining online media. Some of the best messages and videos out there are that way because there was a clear message and a very simplistic style attached to that message to get the point across. Sometimes the simplest videos can be the most funny, thought provoking or easy on the brain. Here is one of my favourites online animated video series that are done with super simple illustrations. They are very effective without all the bells and whistles of special effects and complicated layouts and visuals. The funny narration also helps, but I think the style that goes with the funny stories is also what gives them their character.

Hope they make you laugh!

Fun simple animation of the adventures of male bonding.

Fun simple animation of the adventures of male bonding.

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Now that’s Infotainment!

As you can probably tell by now, I am really interested in online video and motion graphics. I find it such a great way to educate people. It takes the best of entertainment: television and film and marries that with education and really cool new technologies and effects. I find it so fascinating and creative all at once.

One of the first ever motion graphic videos I was introduced to during my graphic design education was the story of stuff. I still think the video did such a great job of taking a very complex subject and laying it out for people step by step. Some may think it’s preachy, but I find it not too much so. I think that it does a great job of showing people from extraction through to sale, use and disposal, how ALLLLL the STUFF in our lives affects communities here and abroad. Because this topic is controversial and it also makes us question our own ethics, people don’t like to discuss it. However, this video has been watch over 2 million times on YouTube alone. So people must be listening…

The Story of Stuff Project

The Story of Stuff Project

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Another Great Motion Graphic Video

I hope that you like my previous blog about the video: Man by Steve Cutts. He also has another video that he has done in a similar style to the Man video. It’s also has a great message done in the same humorous tone. The subject matter is not as “harsh” but it still makes the viewer stop and examine their life similar to the way that the Man video does.

I hope you enjoy this one as well.

In the Fall by Steve Cutts

In the Fall by Steve Cutts

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