Monthly Archives: July 2011


Last week, Ru and I took a quick trip to Paris to visit the company that is going to be representing us for commercials in France, Bollywood. I had been to Paris before, but it was Ru’s first time and she feared being stricken with Paris Syndrome. (from Wikipedia: “Paris Syndrome is a transient psychological disorder encountered by some people visiting or vacationing in Paris. Japanese visitors are observed to be especially susceptible. ) Luckily, the trip was wonderful and there was nothing to worry about.

Dom and Ben (the founders of Bollywood) and Sandrine were very welcoming hosts and booked us a room at the amazing Hotel Amour. At the concierge desk, we were greeted by a saluting Mickey Mouse…of sorts.

Every room in the hotel is unique in its decor and ours was all black with a
delightfully tacky disco ball ceiling.

There was also a stack of vintage French Photo magazines from the 70s that showcased fashion and war photography. Each image had a blurb about the camera lens that the photographer used.

Ru went a bit overboard with pastries and we stopped frequently to admire the window displays. We tried almost every type of baked good, but didn’t get a chance to indulge in a macaron at the famous, Ladurée.  Next time.

On our second day, we visited the Louvre Museum. July is the the height of tourist season in Paris and we expected the museum to be crowded. It was strange. Certain wings of the museum were completely desolate, while the more popular artwork was impossible to see. Here’s Mona Lisa blitzed by tourist paparazzi.

One of the most incredible parts of the trip was a small book store in the Latin Quarter, Un Regard Moderne. I highly recommend that anyone interested in art/comic books reserve a good chunk of time to dig through the enormous stacks of books.

The owner of the store knew every square inch of the store and as we read one book, he would hand us a set of thematically or graphically related material.

I told him that his shop was incredible. His response: “Yes, but these are very strange books.”

Our bags were much heavier on the way home.

New Production

We have developed 3 ideas for our next short film in the past few months.
About 2.5 weeks ago, we have finally settled with one that we both felt like it is worth pursuing for the next 2 years. It’s still too early to describe anything. Ideas and images are scattered all over. But we are working hard and hoping that it’s leading towards a good direction. Currently trying to figure out a visual style while writing script. More images to come…!

Arts Budget Cut in the Netherlands

The Netherlands arts budget will be reduced from €800m to €600m in 2013. It may not sound much but there are hundreds of organizations shutting down due to this decision. Music group, theaters, film festivals, the list goes on… and NIAF, the animation residency organization we belong to is one of them as well. If you are interested in this topic, you can read an article from the wired here.

There was a march / demonstration in early July that we participated in Da Haag. Artists, supporters of arts, many concern citizens joined for the demonstration.
This summer has been quite cold and rainy but this day, it was the sunniest ( and hottest for sure) day ever. The heat was rising and the tension was high.

In the first week of our stay, Paul Driessen and Maya Yonesho were in the office. We are having Igor Kovalyov giving workshop in August. In the past, Andreas Hykade, Konstantin Bronzit, Piet Kroon (Blue Sky) , Michael Dudok De Wit, Wendy Tilby / Amanda Forbis and so many other famous animators have given workshops at NIAF.
For animators, these are all HUGE names. There is a library filled with animation books & DVDs. There is equipment, resources, support and everything I could have ever imagined in this organization.
It’s sad that such a wonderful, unique, and encouraging organization like NIAF to discontinue its support for the animated films.
On a personal note, we are not sure if we will be able to finish our term of 2 years. Hopefully we can but even if our stay is shortened, I still consider ourselves lucky.

Some of us had to hide in the shade for a few minutes of rest… Despite of the reasons to be there, I quite enjoyed being surrounded by passionate artists & art lovers.