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First of all id just like to say that being able to talk quickly like a kid on crack does not make you a good voice actor. Id also like to point out that being able to cram as many half assed jokes into a couple of minutes as possible does not make you a good writer, parody or otherwise. Can someone please tell ego to actually make something thats you know... genuinely awesome? Hes in a position now where hes popular enough to make non parody work and still have people enjoy it, i doubt he will, but the options there.
In other news, ive started work on a new toon, it should be out in a few weeks. Nothing to crazy, just a music video, got to start somewhere right? The Ultimate Asparagus should be completed not long after this music videos release. After that its onto my next project, converting Les Claypools Purple Onion into a movie. Each song will be turned into a chapter of a single story over a single and expansive arc by yours truly, telling a story without narrative to drive it isnt something i have done before and is something i look forward to experimenting with.
Anyways, until next time, im ghost.
And here comes part 2, its been 2 weeks coming. This weeks topic...
Interesting thing about these characters is that some of theme come from really bad cartoons. But what is good characterisation anyways? Well,normally a good character is an individual, the dialogue they use wouldn't sound right coming from any other character around them. Its also the driving force for relationships between characters, which is where most good dialogue based humour comes from. I will be limiting this to dialogue driven series, so sorry, no Bitey. This brings back to my first point, some of these characters, some of these characters are from horrible series, im not a fan of a number of these. But just because the writing/animation/voice acting/everything else is horrible in a number of these doesnt mean the personalities themselves behind the characters are there. So heres a list of characters that are just that, real characters.
Blockhead & His Consciounce:
The classic set up, energetic and stupid teamed up with short tempered and reasoning. This duo system has been around since the beginning of entertainment and the system has always worked, Blockhead and his conscience are no different. Blockheads voice is unique and distinct, and while his personality comes accross as random, it never seems like its random without a purpose. His conscience is exact opposite, but in a twist to the old formula hes completely helpless in the situation, having to watch on and give up rather then being able to slap the moron in the face as his genre of character normally would.
Theres only one Salad Fingers,a creepy yet somehow pathetic being from the wastelands, between his love for rust and caressing things and his mental instability, Salad Fingers has established himself as one of the most unqie and creative characters out there.
Burnt Face Man & The Narrator:
Burnt Face Man, while at first seeming like the generic superhero parody, is really another clever send up of the buddy system buddy system, Burnt Face Man being a moron (tho obviously not as stupid as characters like Blockhead)and the witty and cruel Narrator, who seems to always win, and diss Burnt Face Man at any given oppertunity. Its the innocent idiot and asshole knowall that makes the series work. Its not only a clever play on the usual Superhero set up, but also of the buddy set up.
Strong Bad & Co:
Everybody already knows well and truly about the Homestarrunner Crew, Theyve been around forever. There also probably the best example of a large yet diverse cast of clever and individual characters. Its a wonder how the series has been around for so long yet nobodys came close to pulling off such a diverse cast again.
Ingus, whats there to say, hes random words that fly out of a red necks body. While that itself doesnt lend all that well to his personality, his voice and mannerisms help make him more then just another random line of dialogue.
Toast King & Insanity Prawn Boy:
Suprise suprise, the smart and the not so smart are teamed up again, and once again, they play off each other beautifully. Praw Boys voice absolutely perfectly suited to his mannerisms and dialogue, as is Toast Kings. Its hard to argue against the amount of personality these 2 have and the chemisty between them.
Weebl & Bob:
Weebl and Bob are getting on in years, but they proove very well that theres more to character then appearences. Despite being almost identical they both incredibly individual. Weebl is the idiot incharge and Bob the gullible guy that follows him. Its another well prooven system that Weebl and Bob pull of brilliantly.
Greasy Moose Crew:
Unlike most of the other characters listed, The Greasy Moose characters are just to deep to really have a short summary of, suffice to say, there all genious.
Jerry Jackson was without a doubt a stroke of genious, a fictional kid who makes flash about the events in his life. His voice is unique yet somehow doesnt sound like it couldnt exist out there in the newgrounds forums. His personality is a realistic parody of the kinds of kids you find on the net. Hes the ultimate fake personality, and since he has a fictional life outside of his cartoons he earns an even greater amount of respect from me.
So then whats bad characterisation? Well, thatd be when the dialogue is written in a way that its so gag based that it doesnt matter who says it. This is a popular system in most animated sitcoms, scripts arent written with the characters in mind but rather the jokes and pop culture references are decided on and divided amoung the characters afterwards. Its a poor system and leads to toons with little to no characterisation. Some examples would be...
High School Saze:
Notice also how these series consist of 99% standing around talking? Can we have some personality please?
To check out the full blog head too "http://gerkinman.blogspot.com/"
This is a series of journals ive been wanting to start for quite a while now, the first several will focus on what it means to be a great flash animator (in my opinion) aswell as what it takes to be a lousy flash authur, and later will also discuss what makes a great flash character and how to create atmosphere. If you want to have a paricular animator discussed just leave a comment and i'll see what i can do in the future.
***The following journal is just an opinion***
What is it that makes a flash animator good? Is it the artists technical skill? There ability to create smooth and seamless animation with jaw dropping backgrounds and a great understanding of perspective and anatomy? Well yes, partly, but i believe it goes deeper then that. I personally think that as important as being good technically is, the most important thing is being able to evolve and experiment. By evolving and always trying new things can keep an audience captivated alot easier then by recycling the same work. A few good examples of artists like this are...
Hes been around since 2005, Blockhead was a breath of fresh air at the time, and even now i find it to easily be one of the best series on newgrounds. When it first started tho, Blockhead, from a technical standpoint wasnt all that impressive. The Swain was and still is to my knowledge completely self taught, the quality his animation has improved over the last 2 years is completely astonishing, and id argue he has improved more over such a short time period then any other animator around. Just look at the golf between his work from 2005 to his current work at the end of 2007. This is largely due to him taking constructive critism and working on his faults.
The Swain tries new things and takes what people say onboard, This is what makes The Swain a great flash animator.
Alot of people hate David Firths work, whether it because its wierd, or because it isnt trying to be funny. I personally appreciate what he does. He set out to make what he wanted and thats exactly what he does. And while he may not be the most impressive animator on a technical level, his simple animation style suits the storys he tells. But thats not to say he hasnt improved and evolved over the years. While alot of animators strive to make there animation as smooth as possible, David Firth tries to create as much atmosphere as possible, something that alot of flash authors neglect in there work. This shows threw all his work, from Salad Fingers to A Black and White Cartoon about Berries. Hes not afraid to experiment, as Burnt Face Man shows, and he just like the swain tends to take constructive crit on board, and is always improving, tho his improvements tend to be alot more subtle then alot of other flash animators. This makes David Firth, a great flash animator.
So theres part01. Part 02 should be up sometime in the coming weeks. Ill keep you posted.
Yes in a few hours ill be on the bus to Brisbane so i can fly down to Melbourne for the Armageddon multimedia expo.
Ill be at the OzSlaught booth selling prints, the remaining copies of the printed Nimbin Volume 2 and the elusive Nimbin Soundtrack from the 5 episode long series.
So pop in and have a chat, and if your feeling generous buy some merch :P
Ill also be video bloggin the whole con, so ill be uploading vids when i get back.
Soooo, i was invited to take part in the Australian Animation Festival, i wanted to update my showreel a bit before hand and a few other things, and aside from my showreel i had nothing prepared. Compared to the other people who took part in the Local Animators forum my display wasnt overly impressive, as they both showed several different features where as i only had the showreel, but even so it all went pretty smooth and i made some good contacts, including a lady who helped start "Mondo Media". So yeh, heres some pics of me and my gf (http://aj.wing.sheezyart.com/) and my segment aswell as the updated showreel.
Sorry about the volume in the first 2 videos, the acoustics in the theatre as far as recoring goes wasnt the best.