Sunday, November 13, 2016

Web Animation Watch: The Moon Rises, Overcomer, Dream Teacher and more



The Internet has done great things for animation. It's made it easier for animators to share their carefully constructed creations more than ever before. But with so much stuff out there, how are you supposed to know what is worth watching? Welcome to another installment of Web Animation Watch!

If you've made something that would be a good fit for a future installment, drop us a line and let us know.


MLP: The Moon Rises - Duo Cartoonist 

This short film marks another stellar contribution to the My Little Pony fandom by the way of Duo Cartoonist's collaborative animation. Set to a song of the same name from the fan crafted album "Ponyphonic," the animation follows Luna, one of the Alicorn princesses of Equestria, as her jealousy of her older sister slowly turns to resentment. Transforming her into the series first major villain, Nightmare Moon. Not only is this a compelling musical sequence, but both the art design and animation really sell the dark tone as Luna's emotions travel from reluctant envy to full on Disney villain style madness. Kudos to both the Jordana Gonzalez for the character design and Richard Sirois for the high quality animation work.




Overcomer - Hannah Spangler

One of the great things about animation, and film making in general, is finding new ways to tell stories or shedding a new light on a particular aspect of life through mostly visual storytelling. Overcomer, in particular, provides an interesting representation of anxiety and depression. But even more importantly, it demonstrates the first step on the path to healing. What I really enjoy about this short is the visual style. The character designs are a bit on the simple side but in a way that serves the story's overall message, which is an incredibly important one at that. What Hannah seems to excel at is movement and emotional expression, since that is what really hooked me into the story. I was constantly guessing where the story was going to go and I'm sure there are plenty of people who can relate to the emotions demonstrated in this short, I know I certainly did. Hannah is clearly a passionate animator and I'm looking forward to seeing more of her work in the future.





Dream Teacher - KUWA CHA

Dreams are incredible things. Even if they may seem nonsensical, or hard to understand, they have a unique power all their own. To give us a playground of imagination that can be both friendly and scary at same time. A place where we can try to make sense of the world and the events surrounding our lives. This seems to be the inspiration behind Kuwa cha's original short. Once again, much like her Undertale animation, the art design of this short has a very soft tone to it. Like you could pick up any of the characters and give them a hug. Even when the short takes its sudden dark turn, it never loses that feeling. There are even some design choices (particularly in the darker portion of the short) that seem reminiscent of Miyazaki's work. Whether this was intentional or not is unclear but regardless the story is unique enough to stand on its own as a touching narrative for that both kids and adults can enjoy.





DB Parody: VeGETA - TeamFourStar & Zack Manely

If you're a long-time Dragon Ball fan, chances are you've at least heard of the Abridged Series and the group behind it, TeamFourStar. This talented group of voice actors and editors have been entertaining Dragon Ball fans, (and some newcomers) for years with their humorous take on the beloved characters and the overall Dragon Ball story.

In between episode releases, the actors get together for live video game streaming and even some fun short Let's play videos as their characters. One of the most popular of these let's plays is "Renegade for Life" featuring Nick Landis (Lanipator) as the Prince of All Saiyans, Vegeta. Who has chosen to take a break from his intense training regiment to try out some popular video games, or in this case Grand Theft Auto 5. While this marks the first time that one of these let's plays has been animated, courtesy of Zack Manley, it would be really neat to TeamFourStar create more Dragon Ball inspired animation later down the line.

There is some strong language in this, so if you are sensitive to that, you have been warned.


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