There’s a little ethical debating going on at Cartoon Brew right now, and it makes for a great read.
First: Watch Pratt student, Javan Ivey’s incredibly cool animation
Next: Watch this similar animation for Bonnaroo done by Ghost Robot recently
And below that same link, you can read what some of the fuss is about. Here’s a taste of what Amid at CartoonBrew has to say…
“In my opinion, this is what it boils down to: how creatively bankrupt does a commercial studio have to be to troll the Internet looking for the ideas of college students to rip off? Is there nobody at Ghost Robot who possesses an ounce of creativity so that they don’t have to pitch the ideas of college students to clients?”
Ouch, right! If you have time, read all of what Amid has to say, and most of the comments following the article are really interesting.
My two cents, no artistic technique will stay un-borrowed-from forever. A good example: A long time ago somebody drew something, then filmed one frame of it, then drew something else very similar to the first drawing and filmed that. After a few seconds that person probably decided to watch what he’d done. His mind was blown so he immediately ran out the door to show his “animation” to a bunch of people to blow their minds. And some guy looking over the shoulders of that group of people was like “oh snap, I could do that too”, and 100 or so years later we have millions of animators and thousands of animated films.
The danger of showing the world you’ve done something cool is that someone else will appreciate it enough to want to copy what you’ve done. In Javan’s case the “someone else” just so happened to be a company that got paid for copying his stylish technique. But that was going to happen sooner or later. The silver lining here is that it happened sooner than later, and a big site like Cartoon Brew noticed. Seriously. If Ghost Robot used that technique 10 years from now, I doubt anyone would have cared or even noticed it was done before, and Javan Ivey wouldn’t have gotten mentioned anywhere as the Godfather of Stratastencil Animation. Who by the way, appears to be a class act about all this. He isn’t fussing about his technique being used elsewhere.