Animation with Jorge Cousineau
Jorge Cousineau, Philadelphia’s acclaimed sound and lighting designer, has collaborated with award-winning director Whit MacLaughlin and the rest of the James and the Giant Peach artistic team to create “a whole imaginative universe of live actors interacting with animations. It’s kinda like Pixar, but LIVE,” says Whit.
An endeavor of this magnitude requires many long hours of moving paper mere millimeters and then capturing it on film. We reached out to our board members to serve as volunteers and as usual received an overwhelming response.
If you are one of these volunteers, THANK YOU, we would love for you to comment about your experience. Otherwise, read on to learn more about this exciting process.
My wife, 15 year old daughter and I spend the afternoon with Jorge on Saturday. He walked us through the story board for James and the Giant Peach, showed us the stage model and some samples on his labtop for the animation effect we are trying to achieve with the performance. We working on producing a seagull in flight. First cutting out the seagulls with the X Acto knives and then shooting the still frame sequences and importing them into the animation software.
Then we worked on the storm clouds for the background of the Aunt’s house. As with any creative process, something something interesting and unplanned emerges in the collaboration. Look for the animal shapes in the clouds ( the rhino, the leopard, the elephant and the bird). (If it makes it to the final production). All unintended but a fun surprise. Jorge was great to work with. Very patient with us and helpful in answering our questions.
I find it remarkable that subtly moving a few pieces of crumpled paper or a handful of cottony material, then photographing them many times following Jorge Cousineau’s instructions, transforms these simple materials into billowy clouds.
My sessions in Arden’s “Animation Studio” have been informative and fun. What a nice way to begin to learn this art.
I’ll certainly be back for more!
Learning to respect a process for which you have no experience or prior understanding is totally engaging. Working with Jorge is to recognize amazing talent in the hands of a supportive and charming teacher. Go try it.
I worked with Jorge Cousineau to create an animated blinking firefly last week. Until I experienced the process of animation I never truly appreciated what an exact and time consuming process it is to make such magic. I don’t have an artistic bone in my body. I’m also mechanically challenged so I felt real excitement to watch my firefly buzz and blink across the screen when we finished the project. Jorge is infinitely patient and precise. I can’t wait to see the final product when James and the Giant Peach opens. The kids will probably be surprised when various adults in the audience stand up and point with excitement at the seagulls, fireflies, ocean waves, rhinos and other animated effects they helped Jorge to create as they come on the screen. It will be great fun!