Monthly Archives: August 2007

Yo! Gabba Gabba

There is a strange but the most exciting show on Nick Jr! It’s called “Yo! Gabba Gabba.”
It doesn’t seem to have a structure, and each episode’s theme is so simple that makes you wonder how they can stretch it into 30min show. There are many short clips in between that seem really random. I even wonder if it has any educational curriculum, yet I LOVE it! It doesn’t look like anything else on children’s block on TV. This show won’t lecture you how to behave, what to eat, what not to do, but it simply makes you laugh and perhaps want to dance. All songs are short, easy and repetitious so after listening to the first line, you can sing along for the second line.
What a fun, energetic and weird show this is.

Tango Dance!

Just like PBS kids, there is a channel dedicated to educational programs for children in Japan called “NHK Educational TV.” One of the most popular shows is called “Minna No Uta” ( Everybody’s songs) which introduces 1-2 minutes song with various animations styles. It’s similar to HBO Kids Classical Baby. This show serves as an interstitial, a short animation between longer shows. My favorite song of all time is called “Red Demon and Blue Demon’s Tango Dance.” The red demon with one horn and the blue demon dance tango under the moon.

I recently found out that this animator is also the illustrator of famous snack, “Karl”
Both my mother and I grew up eating this! Afterall, I’ve been a fan of this great illustrator/ animator Norio Hikone even before I was born!2 years ago, Japanese Animation Society’s annual meeting was held at my Brother’s art university in Tokyo so I had an opportunity to attend the screening. Norio Hikone was one of the guest speakers. He is 69 years old and perhaps his characters are most recognizable. The greatest thing about him is that he still has a heart of a child. He’ll hide behind a sofa to surprise a producer before the meeting. What a fun guy.


Russian Art

I’ve been a fan of Russian folk art for awhile. In May, Max and I went to Ghibli Museum (Dir Hayao Miyazaki’s museum) in Tokyo. They had a special exhibition of Russian folk art, and had a gigantic set of “Three Bears” (also known as “Goldilocks”). The entire set was designed that you’ll be the size of the little bear, therefore, mama bear and papa bear’s chairs, spoons, beds and rest of the house was huge!! Towards the end of the hall, Yuri Norstein, a great legendary Russian animator was reading the story on a tape. Goldilocks sounded very rhythmical with Russian language. Even though I didn’t understand a single word, it was really fun to listen to the story.
At the museum shop, I found some beautiful Russian folk art postcards! Hooray! So cute!
Last night, I had a night off (finally!) so I figured I need to frame these postcards after all. So look what I made! I also wanted to practice some stitches so I killed 2 birds with 1 stone.
For those who doesn’t know Yuri Norstein, here’s his famous animation, “Hedgehog in the Fog.”

les petites inventions

A great French animator, Jeremy Clapin who I met at Krok Animation Festival submitted our website to Fous d’Anim. ( You must scrolled down, because it’s rather a late news that I’m posting) How cute is it, “les petites inventions!” Although I was terrible at it, I took French in high school for a year, and another semester in college. My Japanese tongue couldn’t handle the delicate pronunciation of French. My teacher, Mrs. Cadewell said she had never heard such a strange accent.
Since I was a foreign student, I did not have to take French in high school. English was already my 2nd language so all my classes were already “language” classes. Though, I decided to take French because AT THAT TIME, my dream was to become a fashion designer. So I thought since most glamorous fashion shows are held in NY, Tokyo, and Paris, I must master French. Well, that dream only lasted about a year and half and so did my French classes.
It is pretty funny that I am still sewing. The difference is that I am not sewing for fashionable people, but for stuffed animals. Like the previous post, I am sewing all these little objects for my tiny “elves” but they don’t want to help me out yet. One day…one day…
note: “new development” will be posted soon!

Thanks to real friends and some imaginary friends.

Our friend Mr. Adam taught me a great quote from his Uncle.
“If you’re making mashed potatoes, leave some chunks of potatoes otherwise people will think they’re fake.” Hmm, interesting. It’s true. If the mashed potatoes didn’t have any trace of real potatoes, there’s no difference between “pour hot water and wait a few minute” instant mashed potatoes and what you made. Same as animation. (That’s really my point.) By leaving a touch of yourself, your work become unique, and one of a kind. After all, anybody can use effects and plug ins, draw like whatever cartoons that are popular. Thanks Adam. Sometimes it’s nice to hear such sincere quotes. Also he’s animating a few shots for Paper Scissors Glue and you won’t believe how fast and great he is!
Also thanks to Mr. Mike who is Max’s childhood friend and a producer. He gave us some important advices for our web and this blog. (Made my life easier with all the crazy plugins for the blog! Yay!) Max and I will be changing here and there over the weekend.
Last, thanks to my imaginary friends, the three little stuffed animals (hippo, elephant and pig) who I talk to everyday. They bring stories, imagination and excitement in the studio. We had to do some sketches of them for a client. Let’s see where these guys can take us to.