Monday, March 12, 2012

Motion and Rest

These "cinemagraphs" are pretty cool -- a different format for images, perhaps a new medium for visual communication. (See this description in The Atlantic Monthly.)

However, from the examples I've seen, many of these works are a bit too focused on the actual animation without paying attention to rhythm and rest. I like the hair blowing in the wind in the GIF above, but an actual breeze wouldn't continuously go back and forth, back and forth. The model's hair should come to rest and stay there a bit before another puff of wind sets it into motion again. That would feel more natural.

If you go to the Cinemagraphs website, you'll see what I mean, with the set of images on the front page. They feel very mechanical -- they don't really seem life-like, not only because of the regularity of the motion, but because that motion is nearly continuous. Pauses and "drift time" would make these images more aesthetically pleasing, and set the viewer more at ease.

It's possible that for some effects, you might want rapid flashing, alternating colors over and over -- but not everything is Vegas.

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