Friday, November 1, 2013

Ray Harryhausen's Impact in the Industry

Ray Herryhausen was a writer, producer, and visual effects editor who was responsible for the creation of the stop-motion model animation known as "dynamation". He has produced and worked on dozens of films including the animation in  Mighty Joe Young that won an academy award in 1949 just for its special effects. This movie was inspired by King Kong, but had way more advanced special effects. His stop motion effects are considered more realistic then CGI. He is known for making breathing giants  and oversized serpents come alive. He also was known for his work with dinosaur animation making then stomp around as real as ever. The work that Herryhausen did may seem clunky and the work time consuming, but for his time he pushed the boundaries and made things happen that never looked so real before.
Here is some of the work  he has done.

The Dynamation that Harryhausen did was very time consuming and particular. It combined the foreground and the background images. To do this, he photographed miniature creatures in front of a projection screen or sometimes through a partially masked glass pane. Later he would superimpose  the live footage on the part that was masked. The way he balanced the lighting and color was flawless. Because this was before green screen it was amazing and was something no one in the business had ever seen. His work and contributions to special effects and animation play a large part in why and how we are capable to do what we can do today.

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