Feb 18, 2017 | By Julia

An ambitious young animator has created a playful stop-motion homage to the dreaded loading screen. Meet Raphael Vangelis, a London-based filmmaker who spends long nights simply staring at his computer screen.

“I tend to use quite slow computers because I’m too lazy to upgrade them. So I noticed that I look at loading screens quite a lot in my daily life,” Vangelis says, explaining his source of inspiration.

Downloaders and uploaders everywhere will be all too familiar with the phenomenon. Apple’s so-called “spinning wheel of death,” may be the most iconic, universally-loathed loading graphic, but the truth is that we encounter loading symbols virtually every time we pick up an internet-connected device. And it seems like no matter which one we’re looking at, all are equally frustrating.

“At some point I thought, why not use these loading screens and make an animation out of it, make something fun out of it,” the filmmaker says. “Because looking at loading screens isn’t very fun, but everybody does it.”

Vangelis decided to transform the dreaded digital symbols into something analogue and playful, turning to 3D imaging and 3D printing as a way of constructing his models.

Beginning with the creation of 3D design files, Vangelis used 3D printing, clay, and a range of other materials in his pre-production process. All the collected components were formed into a succession of visual vignettes, which were then animated using classic stop-motion techniques.

The loading graphics for Apple, Facebook, and Google are some of the most easily recognized symbols featured in Vangelis’ animation. But throughout the two minute video, the London-based filmmaker incorporates 30 different loading screens into 3D printed forms.

The animator says he knew very little about 3D printing when he started working on the video over one-and-a-half years ago. “I started 1.5 years ago thinking, ah, this will probably take me like, four, max five months,” he says.

About 18 months later, Vangelis had 3D printed every model himself. The filmmaker says working on the project got him heavily into 3D printing, which wasn’t as straightforward as he initially thought.

The result was the finished film project, aptly titled “Analogue Loaders.” Alongside the two-minute clip, which has gained considerable traction online including a “Vimeo Staff Pick”, Vangelis released a captivating making-of documentary outlining his months of hard work.

“I wanted to start by making something fun out of something boring,” he says. “But now it’s like I’ve looked at loading screens even more, so it’s quite ironic!”

 

 

Posted in 3D Printing Application

 

 

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