"We both wanted to do something that we hadn’t done before. Stop-motion was a good meeting point for us. We saw The Eatpes website, and it inspired us to enter this new field."
- Yuval Nathan, Co-Director (together with Merav Nathan) of ATTRACTIVE, a music video for The Eatliz Band
Both Merav and I worked for many years in the Israeli broadcast industry. Merav was a compositing artist for postproduction houses and I’ve been working as a 3d artist specializing in character animation since 1995.
BREAD & BUTTER
Merav studied for an art degree, as well as 2d compositing for bread and butter. I always loved animation. I had a good opportunity in ‘95, when a relative who had just opened a company that worked with "3d Studio" (Dos version) invited me to join. At that time there were very few 3d artists in Israel and no place to study this new field. I took a “12 Classic Animation Lessons” course on Amiga and started working with him.
I especially love the moments when you move a character into a pose or change the timing, and poof! the character is alive. That’s what is so beautiful about animation - how it enables you to bring fantastic worlds and characters to life and through that to get the audience involved. The fact that in animation you can control your work on every level is great. It’s a mix between painting, sculpting, film making and acting; which gives you infinite ways to express yourself. I love the magic of it.
THE ODYSSEY AND THE CELLOPHANE
We both wanted to do something that we hadn’t done before. Stop-motion was a good meeting point for us. We saw The Eatpes website, and it inspired us to enter this new field. We decided to explore the potential of paper. Cellophane was a natural choice for creating the sea. The city environment is actually Tel Aviv. The textures used on the buildings are based on photos that we took around our apartment. We wanted to tell a story about a girl that tries to escape her reality but fate leads her back. Based around Homer’s Odyssey, Eatliz soloist Lee Triffon takes on the role of Odysseus and the storm created by Poseidon (the king of the sea and father of the Cyclops) throws her back to the loneliness of her city.
The process was quite similar to any animation production - a storyboard, an animatic, sweat…. In every shot we started with the backgrounds. Every situation was solved using the easiest technique that fit: some in 3d (the city), some in 2d (the cave and island) and some in stop-motion (the sea). Next, we added the boat and the characters which were all made in 3d and designed like origami.
After the animation was complete, we made a shooting plane according to the animatic and planned camera angles and lights. We prepared a green screen and some green props. Shooting went very smoothly; everybody worked according to the animatic, storyboard and written notes. The last step was to composite the live-action into the animation, cleaning the green, doing color correction and making final touches.
ALL IN ALL
It took us 6 months between our other jobs. I believe it took us about 3 month's net.
The challenge was to control such a monster project - the storyline, the use of different techniques that had to be unified and the film shootings which had to be very precise.
The other challenge was to set boundaries between work and family time, and to stick to them. Merav worked on the compositing and editing and was in charge of what we needed for each shot, "one sea, 2 mermaids and a rock, please...." I created the 3d materials. We did the stop-motion together, Merav did the 2d design and I helped some. Of course, everything was done according to the compositions in the storyboard. We consulted on every stage and made all of the decisions together.
At the moment we are working on a small project and building our website (www.onewingfly.com). At the moment the only thing on it is a higher resolution Quicktime version of "Attractive". We are looking for a song for our next music video.
Directing a short movie, and then who knows….
Watch the video and if you like the song, check out the Eatliz website!