Right Cat Upset
lure in the cornsellers / dandori after dark
Been experimenting with duotone animation, mostly inspired by Yokoyama’s Baby Boom. Last year (I think) I went off somewhere in these issues on what AI could do for animation, and this is the sort of thing that I can see being semi-automated. Draw the keyframes, not every single inbetween, etc. There is one for flat coloring, which I imagine is a huge help for trad animators.
And here are some new cartoons. It’s too hot and my brain is melting, so they are extra-dumb this time. Enjoy! Or don’t—I hate it when you get a beverage and the copywriter puts something on the label like “shake vigorously and enjoy.” I always try not to enjoy it too much then, out of spite.
URGENT CAT INTERMISSION
Here are some of the several cats I saw in Istanbul. There’s a lovely film about the city cats called Kedi. Jules Renard wrote some great one-liners about cats in his Journal, most notably “The ideal of calm exists in a sitting cat.“ And of course, Perec in Species of Spaces. John Gray’s (not that one) Feline Philosophy is also a good appreciation of cat wisdom. What a fantastic animal.
END OF CAT INTERMISSION
If you want more of these cartoons, sign up for the second paywalled mid-month letter and read my trashiest content, like Polytechnic Horwarts (which I can’t spell).
In other news, I started playing Pikmin 4 and it’s so lovely and therapeutic, truly the ketamine of Nintendo franchises. I started thinking about the ‘dandori’ concept from this game—the art of strategizing time and allocating resources—nothing new, but Pikmin somehow makes it feel playful and less depressing than the usual sigma mind time management. I used to make a list of things to do, and agonize over deciding which one to do first, now I make a numbered list and just do things in order. It’s crazy how much of a difference that makes. Another trick Sammy Harkham talks about on various podcasts is a simple reward system—he tells himself that if he finishes pencilling this page, he gets to take a shower, and then he really enjoys it. Can confirm that it does work. Don’t ascribe any will to yourself, and life gets a bit easier.
There’s also an interesting book I read a while ago, called the Mind is Flat, it argues convincingly that multi-tasking is physically impossible—you just flip between things very fast, even if you’re just listening to music in the background (not to mention all the 6-hour Dark Souls lore dives). I know all that, and it’s still a constant temptation, at any scale. Earlier, I told myself I will not start any new projects until I finish the current one—there’s a book I’ve been struggling (and eagerly anticipating) to start for more than a year, and here I am testing out new animation techniques—anything to distract me from the thing I should (and want to!) be doing.