June 2013 archives

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June 19, 2013

scenes from the 2013 nw animation fest: eugene

by sven at 11:57 pm

This post is the final installment in a 4 part photo series covering this year's Northwest Animation Festival. Gretchin and I drove down to Eugene to give all 154 films a second screening at the Bijou Art Cinemas on May 31 - June 2. Here's some of what we saw there.

1. Arriving at the Bijou Art Cinemas... Our first time doing the full three-day festival in another city!

2. Opening night at the Bijou Art Cinemas. That's us listed at the bottom of the marquee.

3. Before becoming a home for indie films, the Bijou Art Cinemas building was formerly a church — then a mortuary. Can you tell?

4. our audience begins to arrive

5. Gretchin staffs the info table

6. happy to see folks getting snacks before heading into the auditorium

7. lobby life: audience members page through the program while waiting for the auditorium doors to open

8. lobby life: "Welcome to the Northwest Animation Festival! Would you like a program?"

9. the Animation Hotline Hotspot came with us down to Euguene

10. folks trying out the Animation Hotspot

11. opening address on Saturday Afternoon: "Welcome to the Northwest Animation Festival!"

12. Thanks to everyone who came out to see animation on a gorgeous sunny day!

13. the glow of the screen puts a nimbus of light around every head

14. view of our Sunday Night audience from the balcony

15. The Bijou Art Cinemas just installed a new digital projector, funded with the help of a successful Kickstarter campaign. Light shone from the lens for the first time barely an hour before our opening screening! We're proud that NW Animation Fest got to be the first event to use the new equipment... Congrats to the Bijou!

16. exiting the auditorium for an intermission

17. lobby life: sipping a beer, going out into the sunny courtyard, watching the Animation Hotline video loop, waiting to buy concessions

18. lobby life: popcorn gets spilled... that fellow coming down the hall was kind-spirited and stooped to help pick it up before staff could even get there

19. Cinema Studies student Peri Moritz shares a video

20. "Which film was that?" — "It was the one where..."

21. transfixed by the magic Oreo

22. beer and the Animation Hotline

23. Those two? They're deciding what films were their favorites. They're about to come over and fill out a survey.

24. Filling out surveys at the info table. "Help us decide what goes in the Best of the Fest show. Mark as many films as you like!"

25. heading back into the auditorium, popcorn in hand

26. So many conversations! This gentleman is a novelist, so we compared the unique challenges of two art forms: writing and animation.

27. a very animated conversation

28. a happy crowd excitedly discussing the films on Sunday night

29. Thanks so much to the wonderful Bijou staff: Laurie, Nick, Julie and Michelle. (Also Kegan, Steve, Ashley and Joshua!)

30. We'll definitely be back in Eugene next year... And perhaps even sooner, at the Eugene Celebration!

posted by sven | permalink | categories: nw animation festival

scenes from the 2013 nw animation fest: portland - sunday

by sven at 10:35 pm

This year I'm letting photos tell the story of what happened at the NW Animation Fest. Here's part 3 of a 4 part series, which revisits the final day of our Portland show (Sunday, May 19).

1. "Meet the Animators," Sunday Afternoon at the Hollywood Theatre

2. interviewing some of the attending filmmakers

3. Magdalena Osinska, who flew in from the UK, discusses her film "Spirits of the Piano"

4. David Chai — from San Jose, California — discusses his film "A Knock on my Door"

5. Justin Connolly, who drove up from Los Angeles, discusses his film "Dance for Your Life, Puny Human"

6. native Portlandian Rob Shaw discusses the making of "Zero Rats"

7. Dave and Justin

8. Justin discusses the technical challenges involved in making a stop-motion robot dance-off

9. a small but engaged audience for this event

10. benefits of getting up early to meet the animators: free Voodoo Doughnuts for all!

11. me and filmmaker Magdalena Osinska ("Spirits of the Piano")

12. our volunteer team for Sunday's "Strange & Sexy" film block: (front) Temris Ridge, Becky Steele, Serin Hale, Cecilia Nguyen; (back) Stephen Couchman, Danie West, Thom May, Sven Bonnichsen, Gretchin Lair

13. step right up, getchyer tickets...

14. lobby life: answering questions at the festival info table

15. two of our marvelous ushers: Becky Steele and Danie West

16. walk down the aisle and find yourself a seat

17. getting settled in for a full afternoon of films

18. welcoming the Sunday Afternoon audience

19. Interviewing a being from another galaxy, made of pure energy. We warned everyone not to sit in the front row, to avoid the risk of being vaporized.

20. Ready to watch some films?

21. the glow of the screen fills the Hollywood Theatre's main auditorium

22. intermission: time to grab some popcorn

23. a sunny day shines in through the lobby doors

24. theatre manager Connor Kirkwood serves up the best popcorn in Portland

25. Serin Hale thanks you for turning in your survey

26. freebie buttons for survey respondents — featuring an image from the film "Butterflies" by Isabel Peppard & Warwick Burton

27. enjoying the Animation Hotline Hotspot

28. this year we worked with New York animator Dustin Grella to bring the Animation Hotline Hotspot out to Oregon

29. staffing the festival info table, Temris and Gretchin are silhouted by the waning afternoon light

30. super-volunteer Temris Ridge has helped out with every NW Animation Fest event since our inception

31. our loyal photographer, Carly J. Cais, takes advantage of the dinnertime break to check out the Animation Hotline video loop

32. lobby life: a lively crowd chatting about films during the festival's final intermission

33. I take a moment to introduce super-volunteer Stephen Couchman, organizer of the Rose City Steampunk Film Festival and GearCon

34. Thank you for coming!

35. Thanks to everyone who came together for the 2013 Northwest Animation Festival!

posted by sven | permalink | categories: nw animation festival

June 18, 2013

scenes from the 2013 nw animation fest: portland - saturday

by sven at 1:25 am

Usually I write a long article for each NW Animation Festival, reviewing what happened moment-by-moment. This year I've decided to let photos tell the story. Here's part 2 of a 4 part series, which revisits the events of Saturday, May 18.

1. the Hollywood Theatre marquee on day 2

2. introducing our volunteer team to one another and giving instructions for the afternoon

3. the line forms for our afternoon All Ages show

4. that moment of anticipation as the door first opens...

5. the lobby begins to fill

6. Ingrid Carlson's son gets a butterfly girl button

7. Super-volunteer Serin Hale staffs the guest list table. She and Stephen Couchman took care of the lobby the entire weekend!

8. find yourself a seat

9. the auditorium starts to fill up for the All Ages show

10. there's still time to get some popcorn

11. welcoming the audience

12. the trick to avoiding stage fright is to imagine that everyone in the audience is wearing pants

13. sit back and enjoy the show

14. recent graduates from the Art Institute of Portland talk about their work on the film "Bubbles"

15. lobby life: grab a size of pizza from the "Pie Hole," chat about the films, fill out a survey

16. Serin and Gretchin take completed surveys and hand out free butterfly girl buttons as thanks

17. The boy in the orange shirt? His mother says that he's made animated films and wants to work in animation when he's older. (Awesome!)

18. watching Animation Hotline videos in the Hollywood Theatre lobby

19. The break between our afternoon and evening shows... Hanging out, waiting for the pizza to arrive.

20. Kurtis Hough sets up his camera to do some time-lapse photography in the lobby as the evening show gets underway

21. folks purchasing tickets for the Saturday Night show

22. lobby life: buying tickets and popcorn and chatting with filmmakers

23. welcome to the second night of the 2013 Northwest Animation Festival

24. introducing the first film of the night: the charming 2013 Oscar nominee, "Head Over Heels"

25. interviewing Rob Shaw, director of the Portlandia skit, "Zero Rats"

26. animator Justin Connolly discusses his film, "Dance for Your Life, Puny Human"

27. animator David Chai discusses his film, "A Knock on My Door"

28. while he was on stage, David pulled out his pocket camera and got a shot of me and the Saturday Night audience

29. exiting the auditorium

30. turning in surveys, walking a few blocks down the street to Tony Starlight's

31. Patrick Coan performs "New Key of the Ancient Light" at Tony Starlight's Supperclub & Lounge

32. using custom-built software, Patrick improvises music on his piano, which then creates animation in real time on the projection screen

33. the feedback loop of improvisation: from the screen to Patrick's fingers and back again

34. an image from "New Key of the Ancient Light"

35. our Saturday Afternoon team: (front) Serin Hale, Cecilia Nguyen, Thom May; (back) Christina Beard, Becky Steele, Sven Bonnichsen, Gretchin Lair, Stephen Couchman

36. our Saturday Night team: (front) Serin Hale, Becky Steele, Becky Hawkins; (back) Naomi Fish, Christina Beard, Sven Bonnichsen, Gretchin Lair, Thom May, Stephen Couchman

posted by sven | permalink | categories: nw animation festival

June 17, 2013

scenes from the 2013 nw animation fest: portland - opening night

by sven at 11:27 pm

This year's NW Animation Fest ran for three nights in Portland (May 17-19), then repeated again in Eugene two weeks later (May 31-June 2). With such a massive project, writing my usual moment-by-moment narration would be an overwhelming task. So instead, I've put together four photo series that tell the festival's story in pictures. Let's start with opening night at the Hollywood Theatre...

1. line forming for opening night at the Hollywood Theatre

2. the line reaches an astonishing length

3. view from the lobby, just before opening the doors

4. our big poster outside the theatre's main doors

5. the lobby begins to fill up

6. Temris Ridge hands out all-festival passes to superfans

7. get some popcorn, then head into the auditorium

8. find yourself a seat

9. quite a crowd!

10. welcoming everyone to the festival

11. thanking everyone who's contributed to the event

12. lobby life: discussing films during intermission

13. Oscar-winner Will Vinton

14. Sophya Vidal tries out the Animation Hotline Hotspot

15. Hollywood Theatre marquee at night

16. instructions for the Drink & Draw afterparty

17. opening night afterparty at Tony Starlight's Supperclub & Lounge

18. ASIFA's Drink & Draw table in the foreground, "Susco & Finka vs. Undead" playing in the background

19. several fest volunteers gather around the light boxes

20. it's fun to watch folks drawing

21. our brilliant light boxes were provided by Marten Zagunis

22. Thom May working on his drawings

23. speedily drawing animation frames

24. most of my drawings were bizarre inbetweens

25. Temris photographs drawings using a webcam attached to a music stand

26. at the end of the afterparty, we got to watch the film we all made together

27. a typically rough and wacky image from the Drink & Draw film

28. our Friday Night volunteer team: (front) Temris Ridge, Sophya Vidal, Thom May; (back) Serin Hale, Gretchin Lair, Sven Bonnichsen, Becky Hawkins, Stephen Couchman

posted by sven | permalink | categories: nw animation festival