I have been watching a lot of films lately since the Toronto International Film Festival is in full force. Although I love many films in the festival my favourite program is the Midnight Madness films. 2007 is the 20th anniversary of the program, and over the years (as programmer Colin Geddes says) we have seen some really sick and disgusting stuff. What does all this have to do with design you may ask? Well horror films tend to have a lot of special effects and are a great way to discuss motion graphics.
Now, the first time someone said motion graphics I was a little confused. But a few wikipedia pages later I think I have it. It comes in two forms a) the title sequences for films and b) the digital special effects for films.
The title sequence is our introduction into a movie – and although we may not think about it – it really sets the mood for the movie. I can still remember watching the titles for Seven transitions are slick and fun. Take a look at the opening of Casino Royale. It sets the scene for the movie with its quirky retro feel and shadowy guns moving across the screen.
So what else have I got for you? How about all those gapping wounds that we are used to seeing. Most monsters now are half real and half motion graphics. This means that often our favourite actors are running away from a creature that won’t be added until long after shooting finishes. I for one love the things that they have done with monsters! How can we fault a area of design that brings us Freddy Krugger and Gollum? By using programs like Cinema 4D or 3D studio Max motion graphics designers are able to bring a directors dreams or nightmares to life on the screne.