Work / Animation

Simon Pyke releases third edition of his audiovisual animation project, 30 Seconds

Sound designer and composer Simon Pyke, founder of Freefarm, has released Edition Three of his ongoing collaborative audiovisual project, 30 Seconds. Each collaborator is given the same 30 seconds of sound, and asked to respond. No further direction is given, allowing each contributor total creative autonomy leading to all sorts of results.

The breadth of response is interesting, given each artist is reacting to the same stimulus. While most of the responses tend towards computer generated digital animation, Post Panic’s efforts include aspects of digital illustration and collage in presenting its narrative response. Hugo Morais, Juri Agostinelli and Erwin van den IJssel three of the Post Panic team say: “It felt like a great chance to try out some new styles – particularly more traditional animation techniques that we don’t always have the chance to explore in commercial work.”

As the soundtrack progresses through stages, marked by tonal shifts, the animation changes too: line drawings get overcome by a splash of colour before plunging headlong into a surreal painterly world of melting ears, collaged legs in a washing machine and artistic nudes. “The film is heavily inspired by a particular Tuesday night we shared with a friend. One might call it a documentary, others won’t,” says Post Panic.

Devon Stern describes his contribution as a narrative fable about “not letting your ambitions get the better of you.” It took Devon days to whittle down his narrative ideas, plot lines and influences. “The file was rich with layered samples and recordings…from that emerged a consistent elements: celebration, suspense, arrogance, penitence,” he says.

“I was working on an interesting animation technique and I wanted to create something that would mimic hand drawn animation, with its organic nature, but at the same time to be entirely digital,” says Motion designer Peter Donda. "The first half of the sound was very organic and the second half made me think of something being crystallised.”

Chad Rutter calls his response “purely instinctual…what my imagination brought forth,” channeling these through paper, Illustrator and finally After Effects. The process was a highly beneficial personal project for Chad. “I had just started learning Illustrator and thought this would be a perfect platform to test my new skills besides the fact that this is a really cool concept," he says.

Pedro Murteira, Dan Cnoway and Universal Everything also contributed to this third wave of 30 Seconds, and their videos along with previous contributions are viewable at www.30s.ec

Simon Pyke is currently open to submissions from new contributors for the Edition Four of the project, which features a new soundtrack for response. He hopes to launch in July.