- Let’s take a look at Captain Pike’s Starfleet service record in ‘Star Trek: Discovery’ 7 Years Ago
- How to watch Demetrius Andrade vs. Artur Akavov for free Today 7:00 AM
- Ariana Grande’s new single ‘7 Rings’ has Twitter feeling broke Today 6:30 AM
- The end of an era: RIP, Critique My Dick Pic Today 6:30 AM
- Mastodon is crumbling—and many blame its creator Today 6:00 AM
- ‘Star Trek: Discovery’ hints at Spock’s new role in the season 2 premiere Today 6:00 AM
- How to watch ‘Rachel Maddow’ online for free Today 5:30 AM
- Guy who wants to fund the border wall has privately raised $7 million Thursday 8:41 PM
- Mortal Kombat 11 trailer delights fans with gory fatalities, new characters Thursday 5:46 PM
- What you need to know about the data breach involving 773 email addresses Thursday 5:13 PM
- Senators fear government shutdown may affect FTC investigation of Facebook Thursday 3:43 PM
- Buy beer for a furloughed government worker with this new website Thursday 3:19 PM
- Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is teaching Congress how to tweet Thursday 2:42 PM
- Congressmen held genetics meeting with Chuck Johnson, despite his past racist claims about genetics Thursday 2:26 PM
- Female bodyguard thriller ‘Close’ is disappointingly un-thrilling Thursday 2:01 PM
Chicago artist Sean Godsey takes us behind the scenes of his Charlie Chaplin animation
Every morning on the Daily Dot, we share an animated GIF we’ve just discovered. We like to set the bar a little higher than cute kittens in peril or a YouTube video rip. Sometimes we uncover something truly remarkable, as with Chicago artist Sean Godsey’s animated image of Charlie Chaplin from The Great Dictator. Launched on Tumblr, the image collected more than 700 notes there before spreading to Google+, Reddit, and the rest of the Web.
Godsey spoke with the Daily Dot via Google Talk to explain his creative process.
All artists work better on deadline, and Godsey is no different. This image—the first GIF he’d ever created—was part of an assignment for a motion-graphics class at Columbia College Chicago.
“The teacher was just getting us acquainted with Photoshop, and we had to choose an image and represent it in simple ways. Then I took all of those and made a GIF out of it. I’m a big fan of comedy, and I think Chaplin is one of the greats. It was my first foray into short-form animation, realizing it was a possible outlet for creativity.”
This particular series of images came together in two hours. Putting as little conscious thought into the process as possible, Godsey took apart and then reassembled the image. It’s remarkable something produced in this way gives us so much to ponder, but perhaps the subconscious speaks louder through art than the conscious mind. Going from primitive line drawings to blocks and circles, increasing granularity and complexity with each transformation, and finally resolving into the fully realized Chaplin photo speaks eloquently of the process of perception and selfhood.
Now Godsey’s hooked on creating GIFs for his Tumblr scannedlife. He also works as a manager for a local theater and writes comedy. He has plans to bring together the world of digital art and live theater.
“I would like to do longer animated pieces, like an animated short,” Godsey said. “A friend and I are working on one now. Also, I would like to bring animation into a live setting in some way. I see it as a way to express myself in a different way than I do usually.”
Godsey’s GIFs may seem to be just a stepping-stone to more ambitious projects, but viewed purely as art, they succeed. Movingly.
Lorraine Murphy is an Ottawa-based cybersecurity journalist and founding editor of the Cryptosphere. She has a keen interest in WikiLeaks and web culture, and her bylines have appeared in Salon, Vanity Fair, Serious Eats, and elsewhere.