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After Shocks, or the Misadventures of Happy International

Happy InternationalAfter Effects.  Wow.  I had no idea motion graphics were this fun nor did I suspect they’d be this time consuming.  But that’s also possibly because I went about this all wrong.  Instead of first going to the library to check out books filled with images that took hours and hours to Photoshop into animatability, I should have really worked visually on the story I wanted to tell.

It was frustrating to show my sketch in class and have Marianne say, “Ok, great, but move the camera around, give us multiple shots, you have infinite control, use it.”  We’ve read extensively on frames and points of view, we’ve storyboarded and shot multiple movies, and when finally we’re given total freedom, liberated from the constraints of physical cameras and perspectives, I immediately revert to overhead projector mode.

In any case, the story I was hoping to tell was that of Happy International, bon vivant and rake extraordinaire, who cruises the world in his speedboat picking up female dancers of all ethnicities and taking them on fabulous motorboat cruises of exotic locales with canals/navigable rivers/waterfronts.  I ended up with a paean to the puppet pin tool (really, I can’t gush enough) and a lot of clips that never came together.  I will revisit this particular assignment.

Here’s the painstakingly motion-tracked title sequence, lifted from an old educational video on archive.org:

And here are Happy and his girls:

Exciting Laos!


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