Jamie Stewart ~ The Darkling Thrush.

I have had the pleasure of talking to Jamie a number of times, as well enjoying his work for some time now. He is an actor, a book lover, and a family man hailing from Great Britain. He is currently touring the United States with a theater group and will be in Northern California before too long and I am really hoping we can meet finally.

Jamie’s images are always carefully thought out. He has excellent instincts as to which images to choose for further work, as well. Often his pieces are staged, clearly conceived before shooting and apping.

This looks to be just one of those wonderfully lucky shots we get from time to time. But, let’s face it, he was ready for it and got the shot. The composition is amazing, the railing and the corner post with the ornamental cap on which the bird stands, the three fences in the background, the vague landscape in the distance. The black mass of the blurred tree in the upper-right looms over the whole tableau like a black sun, yet the scene is filled with light. Much is blurred, with undertones of taupe and pale blue-green, while the bird is in crisp focus and totally desaturated, with one little beady eye in clear relief. A perfect example of absolutely appropriate apping.

Blackbird by The Beatles

From the animator:

Animation for the song “Blackbird“, shown on a big screen during the “In My Life” Beatles Tribute/Theater show. This was about 50 hours of After Effects work, plus getting a puppet of a raven and chopping it up to look like a blackbird.

So the bird here is a puppet done on a white background and keyed out. That was a lot more work than I thought it would be. I chose to make it an all black silhouette because otherwise it looked too much like a cheesy bird puppet (go figure).

I wanted this to be a throwback to the legendary animations done by ‘Sesame Street’ and ‘The Electric Company’ in the 1970’s, where the work was (by today’s standards) technically crude but had a lot of heart and were enjoyable upon repeated viewing.

For more in-depth info on the animation, visit: http://www.skylabdigital.com/video/animated-music-videos.php

Lastly, the field at the end of the video is a strawberry field.


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