China Remix — Donald Trump and His Chinese Friends: Our Animation Project

Inspired by last year July and Maddie’s project “wannabe” we want to do something similar. So animating and making fun of Donald Trump saying “China” sounds very funny to me. I proposed this idea to Kilian and we set off doing this.

However, the process is not very smooth though. At first we wanted to do something not so “cliche” that is just all digital. So we thought of doing stop motion and combining it with the digital photoshopped version of famous Chinese figures painting saying China. I was in charge of doing all the digital faces and Kilian was responsible for creating the stop motion. However, as Kilian was doing that stop motion, he got another idea that instead of using Donald Trump’s audio, he wanted to dub this video and makes all the Chinese figures singing randomly. We had a conflict at that time as I still wanted to do Donald Trump. So we agreed that we would do what we wanted to do separately and see if we could combine them when we both have our video ready. I continued to build on using his stop motion and editing it in After Effects and Premiere to match the mouses with the “China” audio, and adding some effects into it to make it more fun. He at the same time dubbed his stop motion video. When we compared our videos together, we both agree that mine looks better. So after the presentation in class, we work on my version. As Kilian suggested that we should at least have a Donald Trump face in the video to introduce to the audience, as not many people have watched the video. Therefore, we kept some parts of the video and added some DT’s animations into it to match the Chinese painting. We made it like DT is talking to his Chinese friends.

How I did the animation:

  • Settle the idea
  • Draw the storybook
  • Find suitable Donald Trump’s China remix online, and find many famous Chinese figures’ paintings
  • Print them out in color*2, color one of the mouth black and cut the other’s mouth out to take pictures of both. However it does not work good.
  • Photoshop the pictures, one with mouth closed, one with mouth open
  • Put them all into Premiere and make one “China” series with mouth open and close two times
  • Match the video and pictures with the audio
  • Make fun with that
  • Tried use Affect Effects to move the body part and using dynamic link to sync it in Premiere
  • Finished

Assignment 12: Storyboard for Animation Claire and Kilian

Inspired by and also July and Maddie’s work at last semester’s IMA show. We decided to do some fun things like that. Our idea is to make Donald Trump’s “China” Remix said by the famous Chinese characters like Li Bai, Lu Xun, Sun Yat Sen and Chairman Mao etc. Nothing political, but just for fun!

Here is our proposal, aka our storyboard.

Assignment 11: Response to Sita Sings the Blues

This film is very special. It focuses on an Hindu legend the Ramayana from an American perspective, and Nina puts her emphasis on the romantic side of the legend, focusing on the love story between Rama and Sita. It is also special because of its form. It uses animation to present what we usually called a musical film and made Sita becomes the female leading role, singing out all her emotions. This makes Sita more human, not a unrelatable ancient Hindu god. She is like many of the women who fail in their relationship. The film has two story lines, one is the story of the Ramayana of Rama and Sita, the other is the producer’s own story of her and her husband. The two story lines intertwine with each other which make the film Sita Sings the Blues. Also, the visual presentation of the film is very unique too. When it is presenting the real-life story of the producer, it uses very very simple drawing, like a kid’s doodle. And it shakes a lot. But when it is about the outside environment, it is very realistic, the producer uses real picture to present the outside environment. This gives people a feeling that their relationship is not mature enough, not stable and not realistic enough. However, when it is depicting the Ramayana, it is another totally different style. It becomes more exaggerative, and also very creative, with a strong sense of humor. This is most obvious when the three paper-cutting shadows are talking about the background knowledge of the Ramayana. It is very humorous, so it makes the “usually boring” historical story become more interesting and vivid. Not to mention this is a crowd-funded film and everything is finished on Nina’s computer. This film is just very amazing and very unique.

Assignment 9: Short Film Story

Here is the link for our final website and final video:

Based on what we have after rough cutting, we improve it. There are some scenes that were shot in the cafeteria, because of the noise, it is hard to hear what the characters are saying. Therefore, we had to dub again and sync it together with the video. Also there is a part in the cafeteria that was about the “magic” so we added some effect into it to make it more surreal.

We name this short film “Change” because it presents the change of the character “Natalie” herself and also the change of her fellow students. Everyone has a vulnerable side. It’s just the matter of how we present it.

Sorry to make this touching film into a funny one. We didn’t mean to but it comes out like that. Haha.

Assignment 8: Shooting Our Film and Rough Cutting It

When we came up with the story that we want to shoot, we set off doing it. The shooting took place 3 times as we have 3 different scenes in the film that we need to shoot. In total it takes us about 4 hours to get to this 5-minute video. During shooting, in order to save troubles, we shoot the “before” and “after” scene at once, not doing it separately. It felt a little funny though, as we need to change our clothes and also the contract between “before” and “after” is very sharp so we needed to adjust ourselves quickly.

When we had enough clip, we began cutting it. This is actually my first time using Premiere. Turned out that it is much much better than iMovie, although a little bit complicated. For rough cutting, we selected the “usable” clips and compile them together according to the sequence of the story board. However the sad news is that we did not upload it to YouTube so that we do not have a link.

Assignment 7: Storyboard for our short video (Claire, Ada, and Natalie)

At first we were very frustrated as we cannot think of a brilliant story idea. We do not want to do a heavy-taste short movie like a horror story or a action movie. Therefore we began to brainstorming ideas. After a while, I came up with an idea of an interesting and (we hope) a warm story. The story is about a low EQ person with high IQ that because he does not know and care about other people’s feelings, he has no friends. When he got very frustrated of having to be alone and hated by all his classmates, he met a magician that gives him the power of mind-reading. From then on, he can know what people are thinking and what are their wishes when he talks to people. He knows that every person has a pitiful side that they are really afraid to show to people. And after he knows that, he begins to change the way he acts. He begins to think more for people and care more about them. In the end, he successfully changes his image and becomes friends with his classmates.






Assignment 6: Audio Website by Claire

We realized that our audio project is too redundant and is very unclear in the second half of the project after the group critique. Therefore, we decided to shortened it, smooth the transitions and re-record the remarks so that it would be clearer to audience of what happened. We re-recored the script by pointing out a fun scene that after the car crash, he rises up to heaven but because of the “broken wings” he cannot make it to heaven and is thus falling back to life, regaining his life back. Also we changed the music so that it would be more gentle, making the contradiction with the violent accident sharper. We redid the last part too: shorten up what happen on the ambulance so that the story pace is fastened up.

However, when I wanted to upload my website via cyberduck, it keeps failing, saying “504 TLS/SSL protection required. Please contact your web hosting service provider for assistance”. I will post the link when I upload it successfully.

Also I encountered one problem when I was making the audio on the website. The progression bar does not move when I play the video. I checked my codes several times but still could not figure this out.

This link may work:

Assignment 6: Post on Everything is a Remix

After watching this video and his TED talk, what strikes me most is not the idea that “everything is a remix. We all copy, transform and combine on others’ works. We claim that we create something new but what we create is not entirely new” but the third part in his video where he points out that “creativity is inevitable”. It is not because the existence of those great inventors and their inventions that makes the history look like this. Even if without them, there would most likely to be someone else to invent the similar thing. He illustrates a lot of examples, like Thomas Edison and his invention of light bulbs, Darwin and his theory of revolution etc. There were similar invention or theories appeared by other persons at around the same time. However, that leaves me curious that why we just remember Darwin not Alfred (this could be wrong as I just guess the spelling from the video). In this “multiple discovery”, only one name is marked down in the history and widely spread in later generation. I wonder what made it this way and also I feel this is unfair to the other inventor who got forgotten or became less known to people, as they basically discovered the same thing at the same time. Is it just a game of luck?