Short Film Find Interview Confusion Through Sand
Every now and again you experience something so new and innovative you reevaluate everything you’ve seen before.  Confusion Through Sand is like that.  At first, for me, it felt a lot like a storyboard video for a full feature length film action sequence.  But then as you begin to see the tight choreography of the short film pull together, and the just stratospheric sound production, you realize just how good this movie is.

Having no knowledge at all about Ornana, the film production team that created Confusion Through Sand, or their involvement at SXSW or a number of other high profile film festivals like Hiroshima or the Animation Block Party (which it won last year) I decided to just jump into the deep end and contact Danny and the Ornana team to fill me in on exactly how this magic is happening right before my eyes.

Taylor – The hand animation throughout Confusion is just glorious, and harkens back to the glory days of animation design. Why did you choose this style as opposed to doing it all digitally and applying the texturing and the feel in post via CG?

Danny & Ornana – This project in particular we couldn’t take shortcuts with, the least we could do was to make sure we gave the film our full effort. And the paper was such a part of the film from the very start.

Taylor – How and why do you choose to go the festival circuit for one of your pieces vs. just utilizing the Internet as your screening room?

Danny & Ornana – The festivals were a really helpful part of the process– the cut we had at SxSw and everywhere else was two and a half minutes longer. Screening at festivals and talking to all of the great folks there helped us get the short a little tighter. The internet is such an incredible tool, and we love being able to open our films up to the world. But, you’re kind of throwing your film into the void. There’s very little response on films compared to the amount of people that watch them. At best, an online viewer will leave a small, polite comment, or an enthusiastic 140 character tweet (which is only 110 character once you have a link and a mention). There’s something about being in person that allows people to really open up and enables them to teach you about your film.

Taylor – What does Ornana hope and aspire to? Probably the thing that strikes me most about your team is the insanely good sound design in all your pieces. Not just Euphonia, (which is obvious because of the piece itself, but also on Confusion Through Sand. But what are you guys endeavoring to do with your company?

Danny & Ornana – We want to keep telling stories. There’s not really that distinct ‘career goal’. But we want every film to be more ambitious than the last one. We’d love to keep working with Pete Horner and Skywalker Sound. Hopefully, we can carry the strong soundscapes through our future projects, with the help of those wonderful folks.

Taylor – When exactly does your new movie come out and in what stage of development is it in right now? I personally can’t wait for it. I was hooked immediately with the couple on the street corner. Reminded me of maybe Before Sunrise maybe? A walking, talking, dialogue driven piece? Regardless, it looks great.

Danny & Ornana – A Different Kind of Movement will hopefully be out later this spring. We’ve still got to get some help from our colorist, Sean Wells, who did euphonia and Confusion Through Sand with us. As well, as letting Pete Horner work some amazing into the sound mix. And we’ve got another project, All Your Favorite Shows, that had an in-progress screening down at Borscht Film Festival. They gave us a grant to support that film. It is another short animation, the concept is a little difficult to put succinctly, but that will start playing festivals soon and hopefully be online before summer.

Taylor – For those that don’t know Euphonia, it is an audiophile’s love letter to sound.  If sound is your dish, this is definitely a worthwhile movie to watch.  Reminded me a lot of the Sampler in Upstream Color, where he was constantly sampling sounds and ultimately pillaging people for their sounds.  I for one can’t wait to get my hands on All Your Favorite Shows.

Well, Sweetness!  Thanks so much Danny et al.  This was a really fantastic chance to learn more about you and the whole process.  And you guys are so kind to just some random schmo.  I really appreciate it.  Can’t wait to see your future work and your team’s progress!  Good luck you guys.

Danny & Ornana – No problem taylor!  We’re random schmos too.  Thanks for taking the interest.

If you are interested in a little more detail about how Danny and Ornana created this stunning bit of animation? Check out this video. One of the things that few people know about me is that it was the flip flip flip of animators going forwards and backwards that made me originally want to be an animator. I just found this movement and the drawing, flip flip flip, draw draw draw, flip flip flip, draw draw draw, absolutely hypnotizing.

What’s best though is that we see the physical techniques required to get the shots that they needed. The advance video work necessary for reference. The prep and the design work involved. And ultimately the drawing and the reference video and then the final shoot of the animation. Truly fascinating. Its no wonder that Ornana was picked as a Vimeo Staff pick. And its no wonder that they are a studio to pay attention to going forward.

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