Tag Archive: motion comic


Motion Comic Magic- ‘HellBoy: the Fury’ motion comic

A post on re-purposing comics and illustration into animation

I just saw this posted at BackFromTheDepths.com and had to post it here at MotionComicMagic.com. It’s a Motion Comic using art of Mike Mignola and Duncan Fegredo.

War ensues between the forces of good and evil as Hellboy finally confronts the Queen of Blood one on one, setting the stage for a new chapter in Hellboy’s life! Mike Mignola and Duncan Fegredo conclude an epic collaboration that began in Hellboy: Darkness Calls!

I am really impressed with the animation in “HellBoy: the Fury” (from Dark Horse Comics) the motion is very believable and fluid and still is true to the original art it is created from. They also do some neat work with translating the art into 3D to have the drawing shift in perspective. The voices are fine, but I suspect that they might disappoint some especially compared to other HellBoy animation that uses the actors from the live-action movies to reprieve their roles.

One thing I have been thinking about in motion comics is what source artwork seems to work the best for them. The best examples of Motion Comics to me are still the ‘Watchmen’ and ‘Batman: Black and White’ titles that were released from DC Comics and work really well AND use fairly stylized flat comic art. My feeling (at the time of this writing) is that more flat and/or stylize work allows for more opportunities at creating motion from existing artwork. That is not to say it can’t be done with more realistic/3D looking artwork, but might be harder to make it work it move with out using 3D mapping and other tricks that might take it too far from the core of what a Motion Comic is: taking existing comic artwork and bringing it to life.

It will be interesting to see how the fan community reacts to the HellBoy Motion Comic. I find some people are very negative about Motion Comics, comparing them with other types of animation and expecting them to be what they are not. Motion Comics’ strength lies in the fact that it uses the original comic stories and art making it the Comic Book equivalent to Audio Books. It does not replace the actual comic, but allows you a new way to enjoy it.


Motion Comic Magic – recent comic trailers

A post on re-purposing comics and illustration into animation

A few NEW trailers for publications, with the actual published art brought to life through digital animation. Some are more elaborately done and some are more simple.

BONE: Quest for the Spark BOOK 2 Video

Mouse Guard: Fall 1152 Movie Intro (fan made) – with art by Dave Peterson.

“a Monster Calls” – animation by Eric Guémise. Illustrations by Jim Kay.

Zero the Hero book trailer

Any Empire Trailer

Bande annonce Pablo – Max Jacobs T1


Motion Comic Magic – Bringing unbuilt Disney theme park concept art to life in animated tributes

A post on re-purposing comics and illustration into animation

To me Motion Comics and Motion Illustration is about taking material that was not designed for animation and bringing it to life with modern multimedia technology. In my previous posts here for Motion Comic Magic I have looked at how illustrations and artwork can be animated for music videos, motion comics, trailers for books, and to simulate what never existed. In fact I first talked about the idea of recreating what had never been built thorough motion-art and motion comics in my post a while back….re-creating the ‘Western River Expedition’ ride. That example used concept art, photos of models and other elements that Disney had in their archive, but it was mostly a slide show.

Recently I discovered the work of  animator David Witt (quasi-interestingparaphernaliainc.blogspot.com) has done it one better with actually animating the characters in the Concept Art itself. It also brings up an interesting idea of how using multi-media could be pre-visulized how an robotic figure for a dark ride could move in the real world.

So here are some animations of Marc Davis’ concept art for the Western River Expedition ride that was never built at Walt Disney World…

Western River Expedition: Last Roundup from David Witt on Vimeo.

Western River Expedition: Horse on the Roof from David Witt on Vimeo.

Western River Expedition: Saloon Singer from David Witt on Vimeo.

David also just release a video that features the art and audio from the Story and Song from the Haunted Mansion. You can read more about it on his blog HERE.

To see all of David’s videos, visit his VIMEO profile.


Motion Comic Magic: Jascha Hoffman – “Some Hungry Guy”

A post on re-purposing comics and illustration into animation

I just saw this great music video by Jascha Hoffman for the song “Some Hungry Guy” in which artwork from Little Nemo in Slumberland by Winsor McCay. The strips are from the turn of the century and are in the public domain. The animation is by Benjamin Ahr Harrison.

It’s nice to see someone re-purposing such classic material with love and respect, especially since McCay had such a profound effect on Comics and Animations. The art was used from comicstriplibrary.org.

Check it out…


Kung Fu, Space, and Books=animated book trailers

A post on re-purposing comics and illustration into animation

Hey all, it’s time for some more trailers for books. Today we get one picture book and two comic books. What do you think, would you read them after seeing these trailers?


I posted a trailer a while back for Lane Smith’s book It’s a Book! which was really well done. Well there is a sequel now It’s a SMALL Book! as well as a simple animated trailer for it.

Kagan McLeod (http://www.kaganmcleod.com) is a super great artist with a portfolio of amazing ink and brush work that contains not only illustrations for editorials, fashion and music, but also comics. His Infinite Kung Fu is pretty sweet looking comic and there is a pretty slick trailer to promote it. It’s amazing that he had sequences of drawings in the comic that could be timed for animation pretty smoothly. You can read a sample of the comic HERE.

Sardine in Outer Space is a series of fun looking books for kids with art by Joann Sfar (Little Vampire, Vampire Loves, and Le Chat du Rabbin) who is known for his distinctive style of art. The book was released in the US by First:Second, but this trailer is for the French edition. The trailer to promote the book features quite a bit of animation and is quite lively. It is released in France and Belgium by Dargaud.


videos: Motion Illustration and Motion Comics samples pt 2

A post on re-purposing comics and illustration into animation

Well, here is my second post of sample Motion Comics and Motion Illustration videos I have found on-line. Motion Comics and Motion Illustration is the art of taking art from a book, comic or other source and animating it. It’s becoming more and more visible as entertainment and entertainment. It’s really an exciting way to take one medium into another.

I would love to know on both this post and the one from Wen Nov 3 which videos you like. I have made a few animations with comic art and am curious what works for you.

Where the videos on part 1 was more about charm and whimsy, today’s videos are Action and Adventure!

Leviathan trailer (Simon & Schuster)

From a young adult novel. Very dynamic.

Batman – Black & White Motion Comics – 2 – Broken Nose by Paul Pope (DC Comics)

DC comics really has done some of the best motion comics. They work with the art and not try to take it too far (which some others have done in the past).

Spiderwomen motion-comic trailer (marvel)

Marvel’s trailer for the motion graphic created by artist Neil Adam’s studio. A lot of the effects you see in these started with animatics (animated storyboards) for Commercials and Movies which Mr. Adam’s company also does.

‘The Walking Dead’ motion comic

OK, this one is kind of more PG13-R, but with some really nice animation done on the comic art.

also, an animator who is a fan has made his own opening credits for the new Walking Dead TV show using comic art that fits in here. He even has a making of discription on-line! Really great stuff.

THE WALKING DEAD “Opening Titles” from Daniel Kanemoto on Vimeo.

Murena #8 from Dargaud. (france) Dramatic.

Barracuda from Dargaud. (france) Looks interesting!

Blacksad teaser Dargaud. (france)

A trailer for one of the best french comics out there. The art is so awesome.

Don’t forget to check out the video I did with comic creator Alexis E. Farjardo for a trailer for Kid Beowulf and the Song of Roland.


Cartoon Boot Camp(week 3): Animation to Motion Comics notes

updated 7-4-10

Well, my students this past week were really doing some amazing things, and they wanted me to let them know of the tools and software that was used in class and I want to share with all of you in webland what they achieved.

First off we did some Pixalation and Stop Motion. Those are both the same thing, the moving of objects filmed one frame at a time. For Stop Motion we were using and older version of iStopmotion (version 1). It’s Macintosh based and very simple to use which is why I like it. I have not really had a chance to work with version 2 yet, but would like to try in the future. www.boinx.com/istopmotion.

The program was used with just a DV camcorder on a tripod pointing down at a table surface and connected to the computer with a firewire cable. We animated clip art from Dover: http://store.doverpublications.com/0486995666.html which I printed out from the files that came with the book. There was also a battle of Fish vs. Birds with the students drawing their own art.

iStopmotion was also used to film some classic style drawn animation pencil tests of a ball bouncing. The students also went off and drew some new stuff on their own which made me really pleased.

Next off we enter the digital realm with a demonstration of Adobe After Effects CS4. http://www.adobe.com/products/aftereffects/ The program is used for special effects, animation and motion graphics. One strength of the computer is that it can manipulate and re-purpose artwork. Below is a video sample of some Dancing Bears done with one drawing that was first scanned in and  had it’s background removed in Photoshop (http://www.adobe.com/products/photoshop/family/)and then using the puppet tool in After Effects. Then there is a Mysterious Man walking and Spaceships done with the digital version of cut-out animation.

Many of the same effects can be done in other programs like Adobe Flash, but After Effects handles the bitmaps better and is a lot more powerful even with a bit more of a learning curve. I also love the manipulation of flat layers in 3D space to get a ‘multiplane’ effect.

This is the same way they do the Motion Comics, which was one of my inspirations for this class. Artwork being re-purposed for animation.

AFX character animation tests from Brian Kolm on Vimeo.

Last we needed to come up with a simple idea for a short piece of animation in which the students would draw the art which would be brought into the computer and manipulated creating a whole story. After the class agreed to some story elements, everyone sat down to work on some drawings of what characters would look like. The drawings were placed up on the board and assistant artist Chris Conroy and I combined ideas into final designs.

The final result was always planned to be more of a motion comic, but with the art being created specifically for animating. To speed things up I roughed out a simple storyboard and the students worked on making the art which was scanned after class and prepared to be structured into an animation. A big thank to Graham Wong for his help on Friday working in After Effects to animate the drawings and having some of the students assist him.

The voice of the Nanny Ninja is Heather Plunkett and the lip assignments were done in JLipSync, and older java script based program. It’s a bummer since it only uses 8bit mono .WAV files which are very outdated by today’s standards, but it did still get the job done.

The student really did an amazing  job of creating some fantastic art that helped tell our story. GOOD WORK GUYS!

Sadly time and technical difficulties have prevented the finished video to appear yet, but it will be finished up in the early part of July with the missing art and missing music, but a close to finished version is presented here as a Work in Progress.

Note: I also found a few drawings did not get scanned in the last rush to finish on Friday and so they will have to be replaced with something else. No art was left out except for that reason. A final version will be on-line in the next week or two with a few missing drawings, music and sound effects — but will look close to the video below.