EPFC | April 6th, 2015

guest curator: Ben Coonley

Hello, friends of Echo Park Film Center! Two things I need to admit before I get started: 1. This is my first Facebook post!!! (It’s true. I’m one of those elitist grumps who never joined FB. If I were on FB I’d definitely ask to be your friend.); 2. I’ve never been to Los Angeles. (Whaaat? Am I even American? Do I make films?) So even though I’m highly unqualified, I’m extremely grateful to be curating EPFC’s Magical Movie Mondays on FB for the month of April.

This month’s theme is “Self-Taught CG.” Some of the best work on YouTube (and the art world) these days is coming from amateurs who have taught themselves to use (and misuse) the increasingly accessible tools of 3D modeling and animation.

To kick things off, here’s a video by my favorite self-taught 3D animator, the Australian YouTube sensation Wendy Vainity. Wendy uses modified out-of-the-box stock 3D models and a wide variety of consumer-grade software to produce some of the most personal, funny, and emotionally evocative animated videos I’ve ever seen. Though she’s received a fair amount of attention from art blogs such as Salon and Hyperallergic, I don’t think her work has ever been featured on MMM.

This video is about Australia’s independence holiday which, like its American analog, is celebrated at the height of summer. This seemed like an appropriate choice for today, which happens to be Opening Day (the unofficial start of summer for baseball nerds such as myself). It perfectly distills the essence of the dog days ahead of us -— the lethargy and the ecstasy, oppressive freedom of spare time, bare skin, beer, wilted national pride, and yes, barking dogs. I love every every shadow and every awkward gesture. You should all subscribe to Wendy on YouTube if you don’t already.