Even though it has only been on the great intraweb for about a week you may have already seen this new light painting animation from the creative minds of OH YEAH WOW and ALL INDIA RADIO. “Rippled” has already racked up more than 80,000 views on youtube and that is because of the tireless work that went into the making of and promotion of this awesome piece. Rippled is one of the best light painting animations I have seen in a while so I thought I would ask Darcy Prendergast, one of the minds behind this piece, some questions about the making of this little monster. Check out the video and read the full interview below.
Over 6 months in the making and almost 3 years on from ‘Lucky’ their first light painting collaboration Darcy Prendergast and the creative team at OH YEAH WOW have again paired with the beautiful music of ALL INDIA RADIO to bring you their latest music video, ‘Rippled’. Painstakingly animated frame by frame, the piece is all shot in camera, by real people, in the real world, using long exposure techniques… We hope you enjoy.
All India Radio- The Silent Surf, OUT NOW at:http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/the-silent-surf/id402035973
For more info visit www.allindiaradio.com.au or www.ohyeahwow.com
Darcy Prendergast Interview…
LPP ∇ So Rippled is one of the best light painting animations I have seen in a long time, where did the inspiration and concept come from?
DP ∇ Why thank you! We sure worked damn hard on it to ensure it was right up there…
Well the inspiration came from this god awful German graffiti crew who were ‘tagging’ the sky with light. They’d edited some of their images with an equally awful German Hip Hop track, at like a frame rate of 1FPS. It was more a slideshow really, but it then got me thinking about stitching more images together at a proper frame rate, and soon after the foundations of Lucky were in place.
LPP ∇ What the hell kind of critter is that thing anyway? It sort of looks like an overweight cat that ran into a parked car….
DP ∇ I think you aptly describe him.
LPP ∇ Where did you shoot Rippled?
DP ∇ It was shot in various abandoned warehouses around Melbourne… We wanted to shoot in a somewhat dystopian landscape. There is something so eerily beautiful about these areas, that are surrounded by various hives of activity but have been forgotten about by society itself.
LPP ∇ I saw that it took over 6 months to create, how many nights did you actually shoot this piece?
DP ∇ We weren’t shooting every night, but it wasn’t far from it. I think its the first animated piece I’ve ever done where we did multiple re shoots, planned out camera moves, starting times and things of this nature. After Lucky, we knew we wanted to re visit the medium- but didn’t want to re visit it too soon. We wanted to hone our craft and ensure we were going to push beyond what we thought possible. I guess that is the reason I was so pedantic about it… I knew how good this piece could be if we got it exactly right. That was partly the reason for it taking 6 months to create- that an animation is an inherently slow process.
LPP ∇ How many individual photos did you take?
DP ∇ Over 10,000 I think, not that I counted…
LPP ∇ What was the average exposure time of a single shot?
DP ∇ Thats something you’ve really got to find a balance with, depending on how well lit a scene is. If its a relatively bright shot already, a 10 second exposure would suffice- but might not give you enough time to complete your drawing. On the opposite end of the spectrum, if you have a really dark shot with a 30 second exposure- you may only need 5 to draw the character… and you’re standing around for 25 seconds every frame, which kind of kills the mood. We found that 15-20 seconds worked in most situations, but we steer clear of any street lights and things like that where possible.
LPP ∇ In all those nights there had to be something crazy that happened, would you like to share anything?
DP ∇ Ha! Abandoned factories will definitely serve up some strange encounters… we almost got in a fight with a group of drunks who knocked the camera 3 quarters through a shot. That was fun to line back up again. Ummm but I think the craziest thing we saw though was ‘the naked chromer’. We took all of gear into one of the compounds we were shooting in and here is this guy about 10 metres away, surrounded by spray cans, completely naked, huffing away. We couldn’t help but laugh… but stopped when his head slowly turned (reminiscent of a scene from the exorcist or something) to reveal these
glassy yet evil eyes and a silver mouth. We found a new room to shoot in that night.
LPP ∇ The rippled effects are awesome what are they made of?
DP ∇ Our trusty friend, alfoil. We made a whole bunch of replacement ripples that we lugged around in a big garbage bag every night.
LPP ∇ Did you have the entire animation scripted or did you come up with stuff while on location?
DP ∇ Unlike Lucky, this wasn’t an unplanned ‘have fun with the medium’ kind of approach. We still had fun- we’d still have a few drinks whilst shooting, but we were never stuck for things to shoot. I knew what themes I wanted to play with and whilst its an abstract narrative, there is still very much a narrative involved. Lucky was spontaneous- we would leave the studio as soon as night fell and spend an hour or 2 on set every night just trying to think of what to shoot. There wasn’t much of a direction. Whilst thoroughly planned, Rippled was a visceral formation, we’d still experiment, find new techniques, and chase down things we thought had potential.
LPP ∇ What was the most difficult part of the project?
DP ∇ Motivation is always tough I guess, because you’re out shooting until the sun rises most nights. You’re sleeping patterns are thrown even further out of whack, which was especially hard for the crew- most of which have part time jobs and such. Its tough when you wake up, and its only a couple of hours before you have to go and do it all again. This being said- we all
believed in the project. It was a labour of love, and we knew the result would be worth it if we just saw it through.
LPP ∇ What was the best part of the project?
DP ∇ I think just shooting with my close friends. Under the cover of night, we’d bump all our gear into the warehouses, have a few drinks, play some music, hang out with creative purpose. A project like this wouldn’t be possible without people like them and a team like that…
The way we work is foreign and insane to most, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
LPP ∇ Thanks for your time awesome work.