BLEND 2019: The bestest thanks

It’s always super inspirational to meet people who have benefitted from my teaching efforts. Especially when they’re as awesome and talented as this gentleman here, Rommel Ruiz. I mean, check out this guy’s work! He’s a killer!

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Just back from Blend, and I’m buzzing like a play-doh textured cute animal creature or something.

2019 Blend was, as always, all about the love. But this year was a little different for me, because this was the first Blend to run since my class Animation Kickstart debuted at School of Motion. And that meant that super nice people kept coming up to me to introduce themselves and say Hi, which was really fun and inspirational — and also pretty different from the first two Blends. It definitely feels good knowing that I’m helping to make it easier for talented people to enter the the industry I love so much.

There was also a little bit of fan-boy love coming my way — a few people seemed a little nervous to say hi to me — which was both humbling and a little funny at the same time. I remember the first Blend, not too long ago, when I felt like a total unknown and was starstruck by some folks who I’m now lucky to call my friends. It all goes around!

And — I’m still a fanboy too! Here’s me nerding it up with Joshua Beveridge!


But, pro tip: I told him this was for my nephew. Just to keep cool.

Major thanks as always to Jorge, Claudio, Sander and Theresa for the wonderful animation love-a-thon in Vancouver.

Please keep doing it!

Shifty & Blurry

While I was designing images for the Project Blue Book opening titles, I used Photoshop’s built-in Tilt-Shift Blur tool a lot. I had never used it before, and I thought it was super useful to get just the look I was going for.  I enjoyed the relatively intuitive interface of the tool and found it satisfying to use.

The controls are a little hard to see here, but it’s basically got four lines representing the central and falloff points on two sides of the image. The whole rig can be rotated as well.

The controls are a little hard to see here, but it’s basically got four lines representing the central and falloff points on two sides of the image. The whole rig can be rotated as well.

Unfortunately, it also has some drawbacks that I found a little frustrating. Namely that the effect is destructive and cannot be edited later on, and also that it needs to be applied layer-by-layer and does not work as a top-level adjustment layer. Since I usually want most of my elements on their own layers for animation purposes, it would be annoying and time-consuming to apply the effect to all of my layers one by one.

Since I still wanted that Tilt-Shift look, I figured a better bet would be to apply it in AE. So I explored my options in After Effects but found them lacking. In the past I’ve used Camera Lens Blur plus a gradient in AE to simulate a simple Tilt-Shift blur look, but once I had gotten used to the Photoshop tool, that seemed like a shitty substitute.

For example, in Photoshop it’s easy to rotate the entire blur area, as well as widen and/or contract the blur falloff from both sides or the middle, but in AE that would be a big pain in the butt. Possible, but annoying. And since I wanted to potentially change the blur level, rotation and falloff for each shot of the sequence, VERY annoying.

I thought about buying the Red Giant Shrink Ray plugin, but I’m cheap and instead I thought “I can probably just make my own version”. 

So yeah, I did that, and it actually worked out pretty well.

So here’s my copy of the Photoshop Tilt-Shift Blur in After Effects. Their handles are much smaller than mine — I made mine big to make ‘em easy to grab and slide up/down quickly. You can also turn off the whole UI if you find it to distracting.

So here’s my copy of the Photoshop Tilt-Shift Blur in After Effects. Their handles are much smaller than mine — I made mine big to make ‘em easy to grab and slide up/down quickly. You can also turn off the whole UI if you find it to distracting.

I wound up using it for the whole project and in the end I thought … maybe this could be useful for other people? I’m 100% positive that someone should make a plugin or script that handles this in After Effects, but if you need something right now give this a shot.

To download the project, and for further instructions on how to use it, GO HERE.

Pitching Blue Book

I rarely feel this way about jobs, but this one seemed like it was meant to be. Somehow I knew it was going to happen, even before it was awarded to us. It’s like the stars aligned.

[ cue creepy music ]

When I was at NAB last spring I hung out with an old friend named Chris Roth. Chris is the founder of The Other House and a very nice guy who I met in New York a long time ago while freelancing on what was undoubtedly the worst gig either one of us has ever worked on — so far. Luckily for us, we went on to collaborate on many more less-terrible jobs after that, and became good friends.

Anyway, Chris saw my Endless Scare titles and thought that style would be a perfect match for a pitch his company was putting together for A+E Studios/History channel about 1950s UFO sightings and shady government conspiracies. It sounded amazing to me right away, so once my other jobs cleared up I jumped on board and started designing styleframes and sketches for the show’s logo.


Chris had the awesome idea to begin the sequence pushing into and through some redacted lines in order to reveal the “true story” hidden beneath. I took that as a starting point and ran with it, envisioning an overload of information that we would keep pushing through until reaching the final logo reveal at the end. To illustrate the barrage of imagery for the pitch, I threw myself even harder into creating styleframes.


For design inspiration and imagery I spent a lot of time combing through the original Project Blue Book archives, not to mention true-believer websites, public domain NASA photos, tabloid headlines and of course, 50 year old photos of blurry pie tins flying through the air. Eventually a thick, textured collages style emerged from all that source material.


Design-wise, I struggled a little with how to make collage arrangements look good on dark backgrounds. We’re used to seeing photos and type clippings laid out and glued down onto white pages more than dark ones, but the tone of the show and general subject matter demanded backgrounds reminiscent of the nighttime sky. So I made it work — but to my eye the photos and type never really exactly look ‘stuck’ to the backgrounds.


In the end The Other House took a bold route and only pitched one look, which I was very happy about. Chris worked his considerable magic with A+E Studios and the network folks in the big meeting, and after a few smaller meetings plus a few tweaks to the pitch deck imagery, word eventually came down that we had won the job. It was an awesome feeling, and I’m really proud of the role that I played in the process.

One of the things that we went back and forth on at the end of the pitch process was whether to include images of the stars Aiden Gillen and Michael Malarkey within the title sequence. I designed a few styleframes, but in the end we all decided that it should look and feel historical, and using the famous actors would work counter to that. Still, I like the frames I made.


Once we got the green light, my first official task as the director was to put together an animatic. Chris picked out a super energetic music track which we both liked a lot, and I set about creating a sequence that flew through some redacted docs and then went deeper and deeper into the dark, mysterious world. I went full blast HAM on that first animatic — it was really fast-paced and harder-cut than I had imagined originally — but the studio was not scared to let us go nuts on it.

At that point, time went really slow. I put my head down and worked like a man possessed to design and animate that dense, driving sequence. Chris was an amazing partner, letting me do my thing but always keeping an eye on the big picture. And everything I heard from the show’s creator David O’Leary was super positive and encouraging.

I’m telling you, it was meant to be. Check it out on History and … see if you can spot the easter eggs in the opening sequence[s]!

And for more information about the actual Project Blue Book story, check out this excellent article from the NY Times.

Small Rewards

I’d like to share two really nice messages that I received this week from former students of mine. One took my After Effects Kickstart class at School Of Motion, and one took my Motion Graphics Introduction class at Parsons School of Design.


Hearing that you helped someone start their career is really a wonderful feeling. In this case it’s even more amazing to me because neither of them had ever used After Effects before taking my class.

I don’t want to get into an extended humblebrag here, but I’m a pretty darn good teacher! It’s just taken me 17 years to get there.

Another Day, Another NDA

Wow, I can’t believe it’s September already. It’s been a busy year! But I can’t really talk about anything I’ve worked on (or will be working on) because I’m NDA’d up the wazoo.

Still, I can give some hints.


First up, I’m excited to say that of the last four big projects I’ve been working on, three of them involve main title sequences. In the last few months I’ve directed the opening titles for a prestige drama show launching on History network in January (with some big-name TV stars attached), as well as the main-on-end titles for a political thriller produced by Steven Soderbergh that I made with Pentagram.

Finally, I’m in the works with the good folks at to make another promo video about some major new developments happening there. Super excited!

Wish I could reveal more, but have patience!


Look, look! I'm in a book!

There’s a new FREE book out today by my friends at the School Of Motion, called “Experiment. Fail. Repeat.” and it’s well-worth the attention of anyone who works in the field.


Based on over 80 interviews with some of the top people in motion design (including me!), this book is an amazing resource for the community and should be read by every student of animation and motion graphics.

For me it is a HUGE honor to be listed among my heroes in the industry. This book features the best of the best: Buck, Giant Ant, Animade, MK12, Cub Studio and more. And a bunch of people I’ve become friends with in the last few years: Zack Lovatt, Ariel Costa, Joe Donaldson, JR Canest, Erica Gorochow, etc.

Check it out and pass along this invaluable knowledge!

Munn, For Sale!

Fans of the motion design community surely already know about the wonderful Holdframe market started recently by Joe Donaldson. If you have never checked it out, you definitely should. 

Essentially, Holdframe sells After Effects projects for really excellent motion design pieces, including some of my favorites. For instance Ariel Costa's breathtaking "Sins" and Eliot Lim's kickass tribute to "The Wire".


In order to make the projects as accessible as possible, Joe also does deep-dive interviews with the makers to talk about who they are and how they made the works, as well as some technical shoptalk about specific processes. It's really cool, and even a grizzled old fart like myself can learn a few new tricks from watching the videos and checking out the projects up close.


I am excited to report that as of today, my short film "Munn, After Losing" is now for sale on the brand new Odds and Ends page! Now brave souls like yourself can pay a small amount of money to download my After Effects project and scrutinize my keyframes until your eyeballs bleed. Plus, I wrote up a silly, semi-informative breakdown of my process which will hopefully give you a better understanding of my intentions and oddball expression game. Honestly, even though I made this over a year ago, I'm still eager to continue exploring the avenues I opened up with the rigging process I went through on this piece.

Finally -- I have to say, the best part of this was being asked. I mean, to be included in this select group of motion designers kinda blew me away. Seeing my project for sale next to the great Handel Eugene's "Play" is a wonderful way to start this week. Thanks Joe!

Looper Pack 2


Looper Pack 2 has arrived! Finally, I know. It took me waaaay too long to get this set out. My excuse? Something about being really busy, I suppose. 

Nonetheless, these really rock and I'm super excited to see what people make with them.

What's different about this set? In a nutshell, they are twice as big and a tiny bit more compressed. All of these texture loops are 4K, not 2K like the first Looper Pack. And to make the set a little smaller and easier to deal with, I compressed the QTM files as ProRes 422 instead of making them completely lossless. I can't even see a difference in terms of quality, and the files are much lighter. Win-win.

Swirly Streaks.gif

Secondly, this set is a lot loopier. In the first set I covered some of the real basics, like a bunch of different grain and grit textures. As essential as that stuff is, Looper Pack 2 goes a lot farther. This time I concentrated on more fun, more dynamic textures. If you look at the THUMBNAIL GALLERY you will see what I mean. 

Other than that, this pack is set up similarly to the first one. It can be purchased three ways: as QuickTime movies, as PNG Sequences (these are completely uncompressed) or as a pre-made Ray Dynamic Texture AEP. I can't think of any better options, otherwise I would have included them.

Textures are grouped into four sets of ten loops, in alphabetical order. And yes, I worked pretty hard to come up with punny and or silly names for every single texture. 

Wriggly Field.gif
Stormy Daniels.gif

One reason that it took me so long to make all of these loops is that I created them myself by hand in Photoshop. Essentially I went through all of my favorite brushes by Kyle T Webster and then tried to think of fun ways to animate them. I totally recommend you try it yourself! 

For three or four brushes I used Fractal Noise in After Effects to achieve the desired effect. Truth be told, I'm a bit of a Fractal Noise fanatic, and one day might release a whole set created using that method. 

In the meanwhile, have fun with this set! I think you will be very pleased with how easily you can add some really lively, dynamic feel to your work this way. But remember ... please texture responsibly.

Teaching Motion

Did this ever happen to you? You're totally into a certain musician or band and nobody you know has ever heard of them. But then all of a sudden they release a new album and everybody and their grandmother becomes a big fan? 

That's the way I've started feeling recently about teaching motion design.

But with one big difference. When my favorite unknown band suddenly becomes popular there's an ache of annoyance that comes with their success. I got robbed! Something that only I loved now needs to be shared with tons of Johnny-come-lately fair-weather friends who never suffered through the years of obscurity like I did.

When it comes to teaching motion, it's the opposite. Now that it's cool, I'm off the charts thrilled about it.

For those who don't know me, I've been a motion design educator for a long-ass time. Before it was even known as motion design, actually. I became an adjunct professor of "broadcast design" at Parsons School of Design in January 2001, and have been teaching there ever since. When you consider that Adobe released their first version of After Effects six years before that, I have to think that maybe only a handful of people have been continuously teaching motion graphics as long as I have.

Yes, I'm OG.

Now, I have to add that for many many years I felt a little conflicted about teaching. Not in the classroom, but outside of it. I never really wanted to talk about it, especially when I was freelancing at shops around NYC. Why was I ashamed about teaching? That's very easy for me to pinpoint.

A single joke in Woody Allen's Annie Hall. As a young Jewish kid growing up in the 80s I must have seen that movie a dozen times.


"Those who can't do, teach. And those who can't teach, teach gym."


Hilarious, right? Well, yes and no. In High School that one-liner allowed me a snarky feeling of superiority when I was pathetically unable to do more than one push up or climb rope in phys ed class. In my head I could get revenge on the gym teacher and imagine that I was somehow better.

But as an adult teacher and freelance animator, those words haunted me. I felt that because I was a teacher, I would never amount to much in my field. I accepted that I "couldn't do" on some level.

For many years I never really told other freelancers that I was a teacher. But I realized at some point that if I mentioned it to my clients, they would be impressed and I could even charge a little more. Somehow to them it meant I was an expert, even if I didn't believe it myself. Once I got to be a certain age I stopped giving a shit altogether what other freelancers thought about me, and I started telling everyone. 

I should also mention at this point that I fucking love teaching. Once I got good at it and felt I was really communicating effectively with students (that took a few years), and I started to see the results of my efforts play out in their work, it filled me with pride in a way that nothing else could touch. Even more, once I started seeing my students get real motion jobs and move up in their own careers, and even do some amazing professional work, it made me feel like a huge success.

But I still felt like the guy who loved the band that nobody had ever heard of.

Around 2014 it began to shift. I had become obsessed with a relatively unknown guy named Joey Korenman who was making amazing tutorials. I found him to be a naturally gifted teacher who could take something kind of dry like the Speed Graph and make it both interesting and informative. When he announced that he had created an online class called Animation Bootcamp, I knew I had to take it. Not just because I could learn some new tricks about motion, but also to gain further inspiration for my own teaching.

Although I didn't recognize it at the time, I can now clearly see the moment when teaching motion started to become cool. And that was at the first Blend Fest in 2015. If you've never heard of Blend, you should know that it was started by some of "the cool kids" in the industry: Jorge, Sander, Claudio. If motion design was high school football, those guys were the quarterbacks who dated the prettiest girls and were voted homecoming kings. 

So when they asked a teacher -- my teaching hero Joey -- to emcee the first Blend, I felt a little tingle. Something had shifted. The cool kids liked teachers! My favorite band was getting some recognition.

In the three years since then, this tingle has become a plate tectonic shift. Now when I meet with people in the industry, everyone is interested in talking to me about teaching. Teaching is cool! 

Want a concrete example? Joe Donaldson, who has a resumé and client list that most of us can only dream about, gave up a full time job at Buck LA for a full-time professor position at Ringling College of Art and Design. This would have been unthinkable ten years ago.

Who else is a teacher at a brick and mortar school? Adam Gault, another rockstar and founder of Block & Tackle teaches at SVA. Daniel Oeffinger, Creative Director at Buck NY taught there for many years as well. The amazing Austin Shaw is full-time at Savannah College of Art and Design.

And that's without talking about the highly popular and fast-growing online educational resources like School of Motion, Mograph Mentor, Learn Squared that are taking over the world. I mean, when Ash Thorp, Jorge Canedo Estrada, Henrique Barone and other industry leaders jump into online teaching there's no stopping the amount of influence they are having in our field. It's a whole new day. 

So SCREW you Woody Allen. in my field,those who can do, teach.

They teach motion.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

I need to say a big thank you to Daniel Oeffinger and Claudio Salas for recent conversations that inspired me to write this post.

Also I need to point out that Michael Jones, the founder of Mograph Mentor, was waaaay ahead of this curve, and has been hiring the cool kids to teach for many years. My hat is off to him for being an early pioneer in changing the perception of teaching in our industry! Thank you Michael! 



Understanding Patrick Clair

My new article for Motionographer about Patrick Clair is out, and people seem to be enjoying it. Gotta say, I'm quite relieved, because I struggled for months with it.

Being commissioned to write this piece was a huge deal for me, as I've been such a big fan of Patrick's work for many years. But it also meant that I felt a tremendous weight on my shoulders to come up with something that could live up to the example set by his work.

This pressure I felt had some bad consequences. For one, I had horrible insomnia the night before the interview and wound up feeling kind of sluggish and dopey on the phone with Patrick. Not a great start. Also my little voice recorder thing pooped out unexpectedly at the last moment and I had to scramble to record the interview using a combination of Screenflow, speaker phone, and a USB microphone.

Even worse, I had a lot of trouble coming up with a compelling lede to the article. I must have written the opening paragraph fifty times before I found the one that I eventually went with. Here are a few examples of some of my rejected ledes:

"Patrick Clair is a man of many surprises, large and small."

Yuck! I'm not even sure what surprises I was thinking of. Plus, this is such a boring cliché. Yawn meets yuck.

"Patrick Clair calls himself a nerd a lot. According to him, he’s an architecture nerd, a politics nerd, and of course a design nerd. I was surprised by this at first, and then I realized that he’s a fucking smart guy."

This one's kind of funny, and it sort of humanizes him a little, but ... it doesn't make me want to read more. And while I don't think of Motionographer as a family blog or anything, dropping an F-bomb in the opening paragraph is a little much.

"I was hooked when I first saw Patrick Clair’s "Stuxnet" project. What a bold designer! I mean, who else would use so much hot pink in a piece about glitchy high-tech military futurism??"

Let's move on before I delete this entire post. 

The piece really came to life for me when let go of my hero worship of Mr Clair and instead tried to put myself into the shoes of a typical Motionographer reader. When I read an article about someone with a trove of amazing work I often think: what are they doing that I'm not? Put another way: Is it possible for me to make work as good as that person's, and if so -- how? 

I was pretty happy with the final opening I came up with:

"At the age of 21, Patrick Clair was absolutely nowhere. He was obsessed with motion graphics, but didn’t even own a computer. And yet somehow, eleven years later, he nabbed an Emmy for Outstanding Main Title Design for True Detective and became arguably the most famous motion designer in the world."

This made my day. Thanks for the compliment Ryan Summers, and also for the excellent use of curly brackets! 

This made my day. Thanks for the compliment Ryan Summers, and also for the excellent use of curly brackets! 

The only real bummer for me about this article is that I decided to go with no direct quotes, and therefore left a lot of amazing, inspirational things that Patrick said on the cutting room floor. In general I'm happy with this choice but feel like I deprived the community of some real gems. 

So here my Top Ten favorite quotes from the interview:

1. "When you’re figuring out what your voice is, consume everything voraciously across the broadest possible spectrum. And then once you’ve found it, focus on just what you do."

2. "There can be a little bit of a trend-churn in the industry, and if you’re going to do distinctive work you need to be really careful to get out of that trend-churn."

3. "If you find a way to do something efficiently -- basically cheaply -- than you’ll get more creative freedom."

4. "There certainly was a point where I stopped getting my inspiration from motion graphics. And I started getting it from anywhere but."

5. "Bookstores are my weakness, my Achilles heel. Bookstores are my crack. I’m just hopelessly addicted to bookstores. And have been for years."

6. "One of the hardest things with anyone’s career is that you tend to get pigeonholed. You tend to get more work like the work you got before. And that’s great because it tends to be what you’re good at. But it can also be frustrating. And you want to find those chances to just step forward."

7. "Yeah, I don’t know if I have necessarily a process. I read articles about people who seem to have these very set processes. And I feel a little jealous as my process is mainly “get a bunch of information and then just panic that I won’t be able to come up with an idea.” And that panic continues until delivery day."

8. "Certainly for me I came from a design and a hands-on background. And there’s something really satisfying about doing design hands-on. Truthfully, sometimes I find it’s easier to do yourself than to try and convey it to someone else. Not because you’re better at doing it, but because you don’t have to face the challenge of articulating it. You can just trust your hands."

9. "I don’t think you can do this job if you aren’t a design nerd. And being a design nerd is a really fun thing to be."

10. "I think the challenge in motion graphics -- and in all sort of design -- is to not let the aesthetics overwhelm the story and the meaning of things."

* * * * * * * *

Also I need to say thanks to a few people for their help with this. For starters Justin Cone, who introduced me to Patrick and trusted me to write the article in the first place. Also Joe Donaldson the editor of Motionographer, who formatted the piece for Wordpress and provided some key compliments at vulnerable moments. Without a doubt this article wouldn't have been nearly as good without the help of my wife Rebecca Klassen, who isn't that into motion design and might not have ever read the final piece, but who always knows just the right way to kick my ass when I feel cocky or overwhelmed. 

I'd also like to thank Patrick Clair's wife Bridget, who help me fact-check the article for inaccuracies. And a final huge thanks to Patrick himself, for being such a cool nerd, as well as a man of many surprises, large and small. 

Advance Backwards

I made this little loop for the Mixed Parts Brief #1. The theme was "Advance" but seeing the way things have been moving recently in America, I'm calling this Advance Backwards. Thanks to Dan Savage for this creative challenge.

Advance Backwards

Hear My Voice

If you ever wondered what my voice sounds like, why my name is Nol, and how I would up making a short film with Christopher Nolan, check out this fun interview I did recently with Joey Korenman for the School Of Motion podcast.

Warning: I have many opinions about things.

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Another Spin Around the Wheel

Happy New Year! To celebrate 2018 in advance, we made this hypnotic little loop called "Another Spin Around the Wheel".


This was seriously fun to make, and, actually required me to stretch my brain to figure a couple of things out. If you're interested, you can check out my project file HERE

Hint: it involves a lot of precomps. 

This was made for the School of Motion 2017 Holiday card project, and was organized by the one and only Traci Brinling. Big thanks to her, and all the fine folks at SoM! 

I used two tools for this that I've never used before, and both are excellent. Both saved my butt on this, because of the tight turnaround time.

FLOW by Zack Lovatt and renderTom. Generally speaking I'm such a big AE geek that I enjoy spending a lot of time adjusting keyframe interpolation in the Graph Editor. But for this project, I needed something that would allow me to apply the exact same interpolation to every property of every layer. That would have been a total nightmare without Flow, I assure you.

SHADE IT by Eyedesyn (aka EJ Hassenfratz). As many of you already know, I'm a bit mad for textures. For this project I knew I wanted a little something-something to take the flat edge off the shape layers, but I had no desire to move each one of the 300+ layers through Photoshop. Shade It saved my butt!

Wishing you all a wonderful, happy and productive 2018!!

Stay Tuned!

Other than watching Game of Thrones, all I've done is since April is work and sleep. Oh, and go to Blend Fest and the MODE summit. But other than that, all work and no play has made Nol a very dull blogger and social medi-er.

And for that, dear faithful readers*, I humbly apologize. 

I am itching to tell you more about what I've been up to, but I still need to gather up a few threads. I'll leave you with a few clues, to drive you mad with slavish anticipation..


*I assume you're out there.

Introduction video for School of Motion’s "Kickstarter” course, open this summer. Score by Ryan Griffin:
Can't wait to tell you more about this!

Can't wait to tell you more about this!

Definitely going to share this soon!

Definitely going to share this soon!

Someone likes us!

They say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. In that case, whoever designed this video for TracksRacks really, really likes me a lot!

Note the similarities with this piece I made for Fashion GPS a few years ago:


You know, everyone rips off everyone else all the time. I've done it myself. But a general rule for stealing is to remove it a few steps from the original. If you are a tech company that makes apps for the fashion community, don't rip off a video from another tech company that makes apps for the fashion community. That's really lazy.

3 Quick Texture Methods for AE

I've been getting a few questions recently from MoGraph friends and students about texturing methods for After Effects, so I thought I would put together this quick tutorial going through a few tricks and tips that I have on this subject.

Method 1 involves a scanned piece of newsprint given to me by my buddy Chris Roth from The Other House in 2006. I love this method because it's completely low-tech and has a friendly, hand-made quality to it.  If you want a copy of this legendary newsprint texture, here is a link.

Method 2 uses fractal noise. I believe I saw this technique a few years ago on Lester Banks, and it's super easy and fast. Plus, since fractal noise comes native with AE you can share settings and comps easily.

Method 3 involves creating layers in Photoshop. I heartily recommend Kyle T Webster's amazing brushes, which you can find here. Additionally, this method uses the awesome combination of two expressions: posterize time and wiggle.  

Check it out!

9 Squares Round 30

Warning: Staring at these images will undoubtedly lead to madness.  

This was my first time playing 9 Squares, and it was hella fun. Al, Skip and David recently adopted a two-color palette, which at first I thought might be limiting, but in the end really forced me to be creative. 

The theme for this round was Perception, which I was way into. Maybe to much, even. I found it hard to limit myself to one square.

I started out with an homage to an artist I recently discovered, named Pedro Friedeberg who often incorporates intricate geometrics in his paintings and sculpture.  

But then I wanted to play more with the idea of depth in a flat, two-color world. How would it look? I also experimented with different frame rates and exactly which ones caused epileptic seizures.

Eye popping goodness!

Eye popping goodness!

At the last minute I had a whole different idea that I worked on for while and then ultimately ran out of time before completing. The idea was to paint the whole 3 second sequence frame-by-frame in Photoshop, dividing up the frame into a series of smaller squares. 

I really like the quality of the test, and want to do more of this in the future. Maybe in a different, less ... abrasive ... two-color palette. :)

Check it out!  9 Squares Round 30

Thanks to Al, Skip and David, as well as the other eight contributors to this round!