Cry me a river
I'm currently animating episode 9, wherein Sita pines relentlessly for her beloved, lost Rama. In this scene, Sita literally cries a river while Valmiki plays a tiny violin.
When this is done, I'll animate the final musical number, in which Sita returns to the Earth's womb. Since making this movie is primarily an attempt to heal my own broken heart, I see animating Sita's suicide as symbolically killing my inner Sita. Sort of like how like ancient cave painters killed their imagined prey by drawing arrows on them. I've learned to love my Sita, but I look forward to a life in which she doesn't rule my heart.
The film project itself will continue to dominate my life until 2008, when it'll hopefully be done. After the 10 musical numbers, there remain the dialog scenes, and some crazy experimental shit to do.
On the InterWebs
"Fetch!" is on episode 39 of Channel Frederator, hot off the podcast compressor.
Sita Sings the Blues: Battle of Lanka is featured at ClubWallah.com.
Hang in there, Mumbai.Over the past year I've received emails from a lot of viewers/readers in Mumbai/Bombay. Just wanted to send my best wishes to y'all after yesterday's train blasts.
The Cat Animation Eventually Everyone Will SeeVia Anne Altman's blog, I discovered this Flash-animated cat video that's apparently been making the cyber-rounds for a few years now. I post about it here because it's an outstanding example of the kind of "cheap-o-mation" I favor. Using only four photos of his cat, the director manages to "animate" highly watchable dance scenes lasting over a minute. Each pose is reversed, increasing their number to eight; the same photos are shown in close-up, medium, and distance shots; and of course, it's a cat, so cat-loving suckers like me are mesmerized to begin with. Admittedly, there's also the occasional interlude containing additional cat photos, which break up potential tedium. Still, the short is a fine study in economy.
Sort of related: I recently ordered free business cards, the ones where you have to choose from cheesy templates and the cards have the printer's logo on the back. The cheesy template I chose had space for a "message," in addition to name-address-title-phone-email-etc. So I included my company motto, which until now has never been expressed outside my little pea-brain. Nina Paley Animation: "where adequate is good enough."
Great MindsOnce Sita Sings the Blues is finished, in 2008 or so, my next project may be writing "Seder-Masochism: A Self-Hating Haggadah." This is partly a gesture of goodwill to remedy all those angry accusations that I've singled out Hinduism to pick on (if you've seen my comics, you'd know I've also picked on Catholicism, Judaism, and others), and partly a tribute to my favorite holiday growing up. I came up with the title, "Seder-Masochism," many years ago in San Francisco, when I held my own seder with that name. Fast-forward to last week, when I googled the term to see how original it was.
It's not. I'd say great minds think alike, but apparently it's been thought by minds greater than my own; minds behind Twisted Toyfare Theatre. After you read this illicit scan of Seder-Masochism, be sure to read Hulk Gets Smart. Then buy the books.
Oh, I still plan to use Seder-Masochism as the title of my Haggadah, if I ever write it. I did, after all, come up with it in parallel, rather than derivatively. As the great Jewish philosphers say: so sue me.