About three weeks ago Scott Benson tweeted about an apparent segment of the population that thinks animation used to be better then. Wait, did I just link to a tweet? I think I can swing a copy/paste of 140 characters for proper context: “Those who claim that modern animation doesn’t match up to an earlier period aren’t on the internet. It’s the best era of the medium NOW.”

I get what he’s saying – and honestly, I agree – but these are just subjective opinions based on our personal preferences. I’m one of those annoying assholes who, when someone says something is ‘better’, quickly attaches an unsolicited ‘for you’ suffix to their statement. It’s a knee-jerk response conditioned by years of being told the stuff I liked was somehow inferior. Like, for instance, finding out that the particular genre of music I instinctually enjoyed was ‘gay’.

But I like it, isn’t that the whole idea?

I’ve noticed that when the creative efforts of the present are derided it’s because, in the eyes of the ‘haters’, modernization has somehow ruined a sacred process that didn’t need fixing in the first place. In terms of animation, I think there’s something magical about a huge team of people collaborating together to render each cell by hand, nary a computer in site. Certainly the barriers to entry with a process like this (an ability to draw well and a near unlimited supply of patience etc.) tends to keep out the casual riffraff. But this kind of leave-it-to-the-experts, country club, gated-community/ivory tower mentality to creativity is just the un-evolved primate, fear-of-death-and-the-future part of their brains talking. Just go out and make shit; pay their chest-beating no mind.

We’re living in an age when someone like beeple can, with the help of a microprocessor and a generous swath of free time, create his own distinct flavor of audio/visual experience (like the attached) without having to compromise with bean-counters, standards and practices or really anyone for that matter…all from the comfort of home. When else in the past would someone fund a bizarre little film like this? With it’s quirky soundtrack and abstract visual accompaniment where each-and-every blip and beat has its peculiar, candy-colored visual equivalent.

We are in the age where anyone can make what they want and get it out there for virtually nothing. That’s the dream, right? Fuck yes; what a wonderful time to be alive.

Wired has a great write-up on IV.10 which is definitely worth checking out, as is the other beeple stuff we’ve posted; it’s all worth your time. Also, the aforementioned Scott Benson’s The Murf is fan-fucking-tastic; if you haven’t seen it yet don’t hesitate to click that last hyperlink.

Cheers to Sam Lillard and Santi Adams for sending this one our way. Thanks!

[ IV.10 ]