Tuesday, July 22, 2008


I'm currently working on a cartoon with my older brother (he writes the scripts and I'm directing and animating for this one). But it's not in flash! Oh no, I'm doing this the traditional way.

Gentlemen (and I do use the term loosely), I welcome you to Blunderland Studios (AKA my messy room at home.)

Since I don't have a 35mm film camera and plastic cells, this scanner/printer does it for me. Only it doesn't fit my 12field paper completely :[

I, for the life of me, cannot flip Cartoon Colour white bond paper. I have no clue why; the paper just clumps up and either doesn't flip or 5 or 6 pages flip at once. Perhaps the ability to flip paper is the hallmark of an experienced animator. I suppose I'll have to just stick with rolling until I develop this talent.


As a judge for the Albinoblacksheep Tournament of Flash Artists contests and as the occasional reviewer on Newgrounds (sometimes I'm the only actual REVIEW out of hundreds), I've often wondered where my place is in reviewing other people's work. Who am I to point out an animation error, or a that the timing is slow, or that the cartoon needs more work?

Should the viewer have any say about a final piece of work? This question's been bugging me for a couple years now. Most forms of art, say, like something you find at the Museum of Modern Art, or anything hanging up in a gallery in the Chelsea District of New York or in Province Town, is usually untouchable, as far as criticisms go. Even in my art classes, if something was painted or drawn a certain way, it was that way for a reason. In this case, I find criticisms and critiques to be near useless; often times the "artist" is able to summon some verbal diarrhea as a defense; If you, as the viewer, didn't understand it, then you supposedly lack an appreciation for art, or you don't understand the artist's meaning behind the piece, meaning you're not an artist.

So here arises the issue of audience, once again. Does the audience have a right to form opinions on the piece? Do they have a right to voice their opinion? Is one opinion more valid than any other? And then what about cartoons and animation? Does ANYONE have a right to criticize a piece of work? Is the opinion of a 60 year old lawyer that's never worked on cartoons less valid than a 40 year old animation enthusiast, or a 13 year old Naruto fanboy? Who should I look to as having more authority than anyone else?

Back when I first started asking myself this question, I would have said "No, not everyone knows what they're talking about. You don't understand what I'm trying to do here." But now I'm a little more open. Obviously I'm going to trust whatever a professional animator or director says, but I think it's unwise to completely disregard the opinions of anyone, no matter how far removed they are from the field. If THEY point out something, what's to say that someone else won't think the same thing? The key is to remember who you're making this for. Yes, you're making it for yourself, but it's also intended to entertain the masses! In this case, EVERYONE'S opinion and criticisms matter, not just professionals.

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