thought of you :: words

[written the evening of january 20]

did you watch the video from this post yet? i wanted it to have its own post, without saying much. so here's some of the stuff that i experienced along with that little video....if nothing else, GO TO HIS SOLO SHOW, happening for only ONE more week. details are at the bottom of this post, or right here.

my professor ryan woodward is one of the most inspiring professors i've had at byu. during the summer, he made that short film.

from his website, he explains it as such:
The birth of “Thought of You” came from my desire to unite several of my passions into one art piece.  Figurative works, 2d animation, EFX animation, and contemporary dance.  Put all three of these forms together to support a theme centered around the complexities of intimate relationships…and whalaa, “Thought of You” is born!
Rather than creating a narrative animated piece that communicates a well defined story, this piece allows for each individual who views it to experience something unique and personal that touches their own sensibilities.

when i saw the full version for the first time, it even  made me cry a little. made me want to dance, sing, animate, draw, play my guitar, write in my journal, and be super contemplative, all instantaneously. it brought emotions of joy, thrill, confusion, longing, hope, and intense sadness...all in a matter of minutes. such is life, yes? then, kind of awesome -- i saw the credits and the "behind the scenes" cut and saw that one of the dancers he used for reference was my first ballet/jazz/lyrical/hip hop dance teacher. she was the first taught me how to express myself through that beautiful form. now that i'm learning to express myself through the form of animation by professors like ryan, the marriage between the two makes me excited.

the video was password protected for a few months, but i had the code, so felt like i was able to revel in its beauty by myself for a while. well, you know...myself plus the good number of other students/faculty and family of his who saw it.

i've watched it over and over since and it's still intriguing and breathtaking. i hadn't posted it on my blog yet, because even though it got 40,000+ plays on vimeo in just 3 days when he released it to the public at the beginning of december, 73,615 by december 9, and now 488,806 views on youtube, i still felt like i wanted to personally show it to those whom i think would love it and appreciate it fully for all of its beauty before i let it go, even though he had. not like i had anything to do with it at all or any control over it, but somehow i still feel part of it is mine. i think that's why it's so magic; i feel like most people who view it feel the same thing.

it's also really cool to read all the comments from various people who have viewed and shared in it. in general, after i make an opinion or analysis, it tends to stay that way. however, each time i read another interpretation of this film, my opinion is swayed, changed, and opened to lots of different possibilities. it's quite liberating; i feel like every time i talk to another person about this little film, i have an expanded idea of some aspect of life expressed in that 3-minute animation. its accompanying ideas are as organic as the movements in the film itself. it's interesting to have an interpretation that breathes life.

ryan has a solo art show going on now centered around it. the opening reception was tonight, and it was beautiful. i saw ryan about half an hour before it started, and i asked if he was excited. he said, "no! i'm freaking out!" i was surprised to hear that. i had no doubt it would be a success. the opening started at 6; i got there at 6:03...and had to wait in line to get in. there were so many people there whom it affected and it was awesome to see such support. i talked with ryan's wife tiffany and it was cool to share the excitement with her. i saw ryan a bit later and asked him if he was less freaked out now, and again to my surprise, he said, "yeah...i kind of want to go hide in the closet for a bit!" i asked why, and he said, "well, you're an illustrator; you know how it is. you make something that means something to you and you're not sure if people will like it or not...it's always sorta scary." it was cool to hear someone as acclaimed as ryan be so incredibly human. it's one of the reasons he is so approachable and humble.

the show is exquisite; i've never seen anything quite like it. it includes a lot of his figurative works, as well as the animation and full documentary. i loved seeing both, because i've taken his gesture drawing class, where we learn to draw quick poses like the ones featured. if you're a human and you're reading this, do everything in your power to go check it out! it's only up until january 28--there's less than a week left! people have traveled long distances to see it, and rightly so. it's in gallery 303 of the h-fac on byu campus. you should also see the clip from the behind-the-scenes video, which is the second clip here.

to find out more about conte animated, here's the website.

because i have those same passions that he mentioned, it was easy for me to fall in love with this animation. but it is so much more than that. and it speaks to everyone (not just artists) in some way. well, everyone who is open to it.

it's cool that there are some languages that speak to the entire human race, because of our shared experiences. we all have experiences, coupled with raw emotion, and it's amazing when one can capture so much of that intangibility in one poignant piece of work.


--jeff * said...

there's magic in finding something that no one else seems to know about, whether it's a secluded spot by a lake, a dessert restaurant, or a piece of art. when something sparks and a connection is formed, it's yours, even if it's publicly available. and despite it being something that anyone can find if they want it, there's a hesitation in sharing it yourself with others; what if they don't "get" it? what if they don't feel the same way that you do? there's a sort of tragic loss there.

thank you for sharing this video the way you did. putting it up and letting people watch it without any presuppositions is often the best way to first experience a piece of art, especially one with so much emotion and meaning like this. but to then follow up with an explanation of where it came from and why it means so much helps give context and a better appreciation of what we just saw, and a reason to watch it again.

i'm really kind of sad that i never snuck in a class from ryan (not that i really had much in the way of options….) along those lines, i'm sorry that i'm a two days' drive away from this art show. i would love to see it.

but that's one of the purposes of this blog, isn't it? to help us see new and stellar things that we otherwise wouldn't, right?

i could say more, but i'll wait until the next time we talk.

Anonymous said...

I find it magical each time I go. I've been four times already. However, it doesn't help me decide in the dilemma of choosing between the profession of animation or education. . . jajaja! I find it very inspirational. Thanks for sharing your words, Kristin!