01 Animation piece
BEER by Charles Bukowski from the studio NERDO
The goal of the piece was for the studio NERDO to make their interpretation of the poetry piece ‘Beer’ which was written by Charles Bukowski.
The characteristics of the design is a simple 2D style with roughed edges and grainy shadows that works with the dark, limited colour pallet. What is great about the audio is that it’s slow spoken word and is filled with SFX that works cohesively with the meaning behind the words i.e. the flow of liquid when he talks about how he drowned in the beer. The combination of the design and sound fits with the dark, depressing words of Charles Bukowski.
Some of the moments in the animation that made it special is when the elements fall out of his stomach as he mentions how it’s coming out of his mouth, he is then crucified for his actions as he is judged by the women when she finally walks in. Another moment is where the frames of the women and their actions change into chaos as he explains how men are going mad. Then one of the best transitions is when the bottle drains the ocean of beer from the apartment and brings you back to his situation.
The smooth transition from frame to frame and the growth of the object as they leave the frame. They don’t just disappear, they morph in and out of the frame, coupled with the simple composition as the words are simply composed as well. It doesn’t haste, it slowly ferments as you watch it unfold and you get time to sink into the words and grasp their full meaning.
The meaning behind the words are followed by the visuals, it develops as the story develops in smooth motions. Within all of this I only found one scene that is hard cut which doesn’t fit the rest of the animation, the part where he explains how he waited for the phone to ring. I believe that they could have worked this frame more so that it flows with the rest of the piece more.
02 Compare the example animations
The animation that sits on the left is better than the one on the right. To illustrate why this is one can see that the left animation:
All the motion is smooth and there is stylised motion blur where the ball morphs when it moves faster.
There are breaks when the energy of the ball is lost and it has to pick up momentum to move again.
All of the elements works together cohesively as well
Following the points above, our animation on the right struggles since the ball doesn’t follow physics as the ball moves through the line work as it moves.
Then there change in direction is also choppy which makes the animation feel mechanical.