It’s amazing the pains studios will go through to create an analog look with software. I guess despite the incredible technical challenges digitally executing an analog style often entails, it’s still faster and cheaper than the old school methods. Not only that, making an oragami elephant is really, really hard.
I’ve heard so many analog animators complain about this truth, insisting that something gets lost when its all digital, that the work loses its soul or something. Side-stepping the debate about whether or not any commercial work has a “soul,” there’s no doubt that an analog process will suggest different solutionsÃ¢â‚¬â€?and therefore different ideasÃ¢â‚¬â€?than a digital approach. But the assertion that it’s superior somehow is a form of nostalgia and should, like all forms of nostalgia, be deeply questioned.
But then I guess employing an analog aesthetic at all is also a form of nostalgia, isn’t it?
Or is it?
It’s not as simple a question as it might seem. We’re surrounded by digital simulacra that we take for granted. Nearly every media production process that was once analog is now fully digital. We don’t make things with pen and paper anymore because we have toÃ¢â‚¬â€?we do it because we want to.
And it’s in this wanting that I think a hidden nostalgia lies. We’re not quite comfortable, I think, with our fully digital lives. We have just enough memory of a pre-digital past that recalling stop-action animation and recalling childhood become one and the same thing. That’s the magical recipe for nostalgia. That’s the thing that makes us feel goodÃ¢â‚¬â€?righteous, evenÃ¢â‚¬â€?when we say, “Yeah, I did that frame by frame. Took me forever.”
Those who say CG oragami is nostalgic are essentially admitting that real oragami is a thing of the past that is somehow revered for both its place in history (whether this history is imagined or not doesn’t really matter) and for its “realness,” its dependence on actual paper and actual hands actually folding it. If CG oragami is nostalgic, in other words, then computer-generated imagery is devalued. It is “less than.”
The truth is, we can’t make up our minds how we feel about all this stuff. As James Murphy says:
“I hear that you and your band have sold your guitars and bought turntables.
I hear that you and your band have sold your turntables and bought guitars.”
Thanks to Self_90 for the link.