Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Consistency is for the weak

Four years ago last month, I posted this TRIBUTE TO MONTY, a selection of "off-model," spontaneous doodles of my favorite SIMPSONS character. Part of the subconscious urge to draw these came from the certainty that the designs for the beloved yellow Springfieldians are solid enough to withstand almost any stylistic interpretation.


On Sunday, John K's surprise 'couch gag' took that idea infinitely farther that i would have even dreamed of doing. It turned out to be not only a standalone showcase for his latest take on the 2D medium, but also a high-profile conversation-starter about the fate of hand-drawn animation in these troubled times.

Personally, I enjoyed the piece in all it's crazy glory. John's insatiable urge to scratch deep below the well-worn surface of the medium is an inspiration. It makes me want to animate again. John's full frontal assault on the "on-model" mentality that remains the cornerstone of production dogma is a welcome kick in the ass. One wonders, now that John has re-booted MIGHTY MOUSE, YOGI, and even HOMER, if a SPUMCO treatment of Mickey, Donald & Goofy couldn't work miracles for Disney? Maybe a SPUMCO Snow White?  Come on Bob Iger, you know you want it...

6 comments:

Ed Bell said...

Hey Will. Just had to add anote that your blog is always great entertainment. And your funny drawing and cartooning instincts are sharp as a tack. My students at CCA are going to know this blog well, being nerds of real cartoons like myself.

Haven't seen you for years, but wish you well, and follow the work. - Ed

Christopher M. Sobieniak said...

I think we all do!

Mike said...

John's couch gag broke my brain. But in a good way. Also, thanks for harking back to your Burns doodles -- they rock!

Will Finn said...

Thanks Ed--great to hear from you. It's been a while for sure. (can BOX OFFICE BUNNY really be 21 years ago?)

Thanks Chris ( i dig the Ken A. icon!)

Thanks Mike- Hope all is well...

Brubaker said...

Semi-related to what you're talking about, animator Tom Warburton writes about his attempt to get a job on the Simpsons when he was starting out in the industry.

http://warburtonlabs.blogspot.com/2010/12/my-best-simpsons-story-ever.html

I shared the link to former Simpsons layout artist Mark Colangelo and he said he remembers seeing it. He has alot of interesting stories about the Simpsons and Film Roman.

Will Finn said...

That's a great tale Charles, I've never met Matt Groening (or Mr. Warburton) but he has frequently stated that he would likely not be able to get hired on the crew...

I heard another story, not really mine to tell, about one of the most talented individuals in the business who early on worked on the first season as a freelancer, doing character layout poses. Years later he came by to pick up work on the feature film but they insisted he take a test. Unknown to the studio, it was a test to animate one of his own scenes from year one. He put it back in the folder and declined...

All the same, hats off to Matt Groening and the studio for hosting John K's wildness...