• Energyflow-hero

    FIELD: Energy Flow

Miscellaneous

FIELD's Energy Flow is an overwhelming beast of digital design

Posted by James Cartwright,

Digital design studio FIELD have long held a reputation for pushing the boundaries of computer-generated design. With a commitment to the aesthetic qualities of their output that’s uncharacteristic of creatives with such a technical background, they can count themselves almost peerless. Having just released Energy Flow, a monolithic application that offers almost infinite video storytelling subject to the manipulations of its user, they’ve set sail into uncharted waters exploring, for the first time, the potential of generative software and complex programming on narrative storytelling

With the support of The Creator’s Project, Energy Flow has been in the making for the best part of a year and has seen FIELD shut down the commercial wing of their operation to focus on it completely. Working with a variety of freelance digital specialists, including a man who makes his living designing crowds for computer games, they’ve put together a set of 10 films that can be viewed in limitless sequences and iterations (not to mention any number of angles) thanks to the creation of a custom piece of software, The Infinite Film Composer.

The Infinite Film Composer was designed in-house and brings together a variety of complex elements form FIELD’s previous commercial and personal experiments with generative software. In this instance it sequences audiovisual elements from ten individual films and a bank of soundscapes created by David Kamp, remixing them into a unique narrative every time the app is used.

  • Energyflow-1

    FIELD: Energy Flow

  • Energyflow-4

    FIELD: Energy Flow

  • Energyflow-10

    FIELD: Energy Flow

Thematically FIELD’s vision is no less impressive. They’ve drawn on everything from the great traditions of classical storytelling and primitive life and death narratives to the current shifts in scientific understanding and socio-political change brought about by the Arab Spring. It’s a weighty set of ideas underpinned by the key notion that everything in the world is interconnected and governed by chance (an idea exemplified by the throwing of a dice at the start of your app experience) “the fragile equilibrium, the dependencies between economic, political, geographical and cultural factors.”

Next year will see the arrival of a video installation that includes interactive elements as well as narratives that can be experienced as a group. We can only imagine what commercial projects they’ll be approached for in the next 12 months.

  • Energyflow-3

    FIELD: Energy Flow

  • Energyflow-2

    FIELD: Energy Flow

  • Energyflow-7

    FIELD: Energy Flow

  • Energyflow-6

    FIELD: Energy Flow

  • Energyflow-5

    FIELD: Energy Flow

Jc

Posted by James Cartwright

James started out as an intern in 2011 and came back in summer of 2012 to work online and latterly as Print Editor, before leaving in May 2015.

Most Recent: Animation View Archive

  1. Marc-and-emma-bts-itsnicethat-list

    Clicking onto Emma De Swaef and Marc James Roels’ portfolio site is something like tentatively stepping into a fantasy world inhabited by felt miniatures. Having previously concocted this magical short about woollen wrestling puppets, the Ghent-based filmmaking duo is now back with a new and equally enchanting puppet creation, and this time it’s a sweet, tiny green gorilla.

  2. Universaleverything-sydneyoperahouse-itsnicethat-list

    It may be my former life as a hack but there’s something about the word “biggest” that always piques my interest. That said, ambition only gets you so far and you can’t sacrifice skill or style in a headlong rush for scale. With Universal Everything though, you needn’t worry. On Friday the studio created its largest projection to date, lighting up the iconic sails of the Sydney Opera House with hand-drawn animations from 22 of the world’s best creatives. Every year the landmark commissions an artist to work on its curves and Matt Pyke and his team jumped at the chance to take on an opportunity that “epitomises everything we strive for.”

  3. Brian-wilson-california-inspires-me-its-nice-that-list-

    We didn’t really need an animation to tell us how much California has inspired The Beach Boys. But nonetheless, when a sweet, pencil-drawn Brian Wilson is telling us exactly why through a beautifully crafted animation by James Blagden, we’re certainly not complaining. Aside from obvious cues like songs called California Girls and the less well-received California Saga: California; the band is synonymous with surfing and the US West Coast, though as many a pub bore has been swift to point out, only one member of the band, Dennis, actually surfed. However, throughout the animation’s two-and-a-half minutes we do learn a lot. “I was listening to Rubber Soul one night and I was so blown away I went straight to my piano to start writing Pet Sounds. I was like outta my mind. And it took us an hour – only about an hour to write God Only Knows.”

  4. Lie

    In Chinese animator Lei Lei’s newest piece of work the words Missing One Player hint at something devastating – a world in which an incomplete group of Mahjong players, are waiting to find the missing person needed to play their tile-based board game as the earth hurtles towards an unnamed planet.

  5. Treat-studios-adultswim-idents-its-nice-that-list

    As anyone who’s seen pretty much anything to emerge from the Adult Swim network will testify, its output is pretty darned weird. Sometimes in a good way, sometimes in a help-I-feel-sick way, but perhaps that’s because I never have been and never will be a teenage boy. For its no-holds-barred bonkersness and gross-out mentality, it must surely be a dream for many animators to work for the brand. So Treat Studios, which has created the latest Adult Swim trailers, were understandably chuffed to be commissioned for the project “completely out of the blue.”

  6. Unnamed-1

    GIFs are just a part of life now, like shoes or the BBC. In a world overrun with these oddly satisfying little snippets of expression, the general vibe of GIFs so far has been leaning much more on the quantity level than the quality. When you find yourself scrolling cross-eyed through the internet and you come across GIFs with such delicate majesty such as these by Rebecca Mock, it hits you like a pixelated smack in the face. Rebecca is an illustrator from New York who creates exquisite digital illustrations for the likes of The New York Times, The New Yorker, and Medium among others. Her illustrations are subtle and somewhat tender moments represented in GIF form, un-showy and delicate. Sometimes the only thing moving in the whole image is a flashing light on a laptop, or the endless sideways scroll of an iPad. How refreshing to see someone leaping on this medium, and using it to illustrate the strange new digital world we’re in.

  7. Artandgraft-thewalk-itsnicethat-list

    I sometimes feel like animators have things pretty tough. There they are, working slavishly away until the wee hours of the morning making still imagery appear to move naturally and by the end of the day what do they have to show for it? About five seconds worth of footage. Gruelling stuff!

  8. Schooloflife-love-itsnicethat-list

    The School of Life’s raison d’etre is to develop emotional intelligence in its audience, meaning they’re experienced in being confrontational with philosophical thought. But their latest short film is even more challenging than we’ve come to expect. In it we’re told repeatedly that love is an illusion and we’re all painfully and unavoidably alone. Then just as the weight of this message sinks in we’re asked to forget about the whole thing and get on with our lives as we were. Emotional rollercoaster!

  9. Montypython-itsnicethat-main

    I had forgotten the majesty of The Galaxy Song until this morning when Stephen Hawking decided to cover it in honour of Monty Python’s stage show. The rascal has recorded his version of the beautifully written song which is accompanied by an endearingly shit little video featuring him on his wheelchair whizzing off into the cosmos as he sings.

  10. Beach-bums-itsnicethat-list

    Beach Bums by The Great Nordic Sword Fights is the kind of animation that should come with some kind of a warning – and not because it contains any illicit materials, just because it feels something like Spongebob Squarepants on acid. Created by director duo Ricky Jonsson Jr and Kristel Brinshot for an episode of American cable network Adult Swim’s Off the Air, it features a motley crew of hairy psychedelic creatures surfing wildly through a tropical ocean to a digital soundtrack by Groundislava, interrupted only by the pursuit of what might be a giant poo floating through the ocean.

  11. Hands-int-7-list

    Nicolas Herenstein’s Hands animation studio specialises in bright, bold vector animations, typically used for advertising and informing. Need to tell the world to get on social media for the duration of the Tour de France? Hands’ll do it. Want to encourage people to vote in the next election? Call Hands. Or maybe you’ve got a museum dedicated to the Olympics that you’d appreciate some visitors for. Not a problem; Hands has got it covered, and they’ll probably make your customers chuckle a bit too!

  12. Animade-propz-int-list

    “Ball sack!” reads the intro to this great new video for Animade, though it’s so gorgeous it didn’t even need something that puerile to lure us in. The film showcases the results of the studio’s Propz project, which sees it create an animation based around a prop suggested by the public. As such, the topics range from the pedestrian (fridges, shoelaces) to the surreal and phallic (wizard wand) and the rude – our aforementioned Ball Sack. All ten of the Propz pieces in one animation makes for a superb piece of work; charming, baffling, hilarious and utterly compelling. Our heart goes out to the sticky-taped cats at the end. We’re sure they’ll be just fine…

  13. Beakus-philippa-perry-int-list

    It’s been an impressive fortnight at Beakus HQ with great animations coming thick and fast from their team of directors. Last week we lapped up their exploration of the origins of the Magna Carta for the British Museum, in which Gergely Wootsch’s drawings were expertly combined with Terry Jones’ distinctive voice.