May 21, 2014

EVENT: The World of Stop Motion Animation at Screen Novelties

Photo: Screen Novelties

What if you could actually visit the Island of Misfit Toys?

Sometimes I feel like I'm already living on it.

But as a fan of both Christmas and puppets, I've long admired the work of Rankin/Bass in the Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and other annual holiday TV specials, and have dreamed of actually working in the field myself.

Photo: Screen Novelties

Visiting a stop motion animation studio was a natural next event for me as field agent for Atlas Obscura.

And it turns out, I'm not on an island all by myself. The response to this event announcement was so overwhelming, we sold out of tickets the day they went on sale.

From the official event listing:


Sure, we all love CGI. But there was a time when animation wasn't just about computer graphics on a screen. Animation was real models you could tangibly hold in your hands, bend, and play with. Each piece, figure, and character handmade, painted, and constructed. A human touch in a increasingly computerized world.

Join the Obscura Society LA and field agent Sandi Hemmerlein (me!) as we learn about the classic art of stop motion in a behind the scenes tour of an active stop motion animation production studio, Screen Novelties in Echo Park.

Screen Novelties is known for embracing original techniques from Japanese puppet artists that haven’t changed since the 1960s. Come learn how the art has evolved to employ modern technologies like 3D printing. We’ll also get to see some super secret works-in-progress for upcoming productions, as well as some of their unique past works on display.

We will explore drawers of puppet heads and fabrics, sift through pounds of googly eyes, glitter, and feathers, as well as dozens of types of foam that have been used to make everything from Spongebob Squarepants to Krampus.

Additionally, Screen Novelties also recently restored the original and historic Rankin/Bass puppets of Rudolf and Santa Claus from Rudolf the Red-Nosed Reindeer.

Screen Novelties was formed in 2003 with the goal of bringing the whimsy and dynamism of classic cartoons into the realm of stop motion animation. It is home to a talented circle of freelance animators, sculptors, designers, photographers, and digital artists whose work can be seen on last year’s Oscars telecast (in the sock puppet parody of Flight), and in the end credits of Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2. Check out some videos of their work here.

Tickets SOLD OUT! Add to Waitlist HERE

Related Posts:
The Island of Misfit Toy
Photo Essay: Behind the Scenes at Bob Baker Marionette Theater

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