Well, as promised in my first post, I've finally gotten around to taking video of these two early animations I did, the first time I've shared this work outside of my own family. The first book has about 180 sheets / frames, done in 1984, and the second about 300, done in 1985. I wasted some time trying to capture them frame-by-frame; when I did a test of this I found that the ideal frame rate is around 8 fps, and it ended up looking "off" (it was all done straight ahead, and timing was purely intuitive and obviously depends on how the flipper chooses the pace). But when I filmed it directly, it looked alright! The flipping seems to mask the rather slow frame rate through the blur of the moving sheets, an interesting little discovery. Smear frames of sorts, you could say, perhaps a subtle advantage of the well-established method.
The method being primitive naive, it's interesting to retrospectively observe how I didn't have any qualms about jamming stuff all together on the same page with my first try. Reminds me of the bush art that decorates the hills of Zimbabwe, where the ancient artists would just go right ahead and paint over the work that was there before. Perhaps also being the case with tagging and graffiti: not overly preoccupied, impulsive and unsentimental in nature. "In the moment".
Seven years after this I was investigating animation school options for the first time.
And then I ditched the whole idea for about another 15 years, not so much because I didn't think I could do it, but because it seemed entirely impracticable: far too expensive and inefficient. But then the computer changed all of that, and here I am at it again.
I actually did quite a lot of "messing around" with animation on our old Atari 1040ST back in the late 80's. I even did some 3d stuff back then. I remember using an early version of something like autoCAD. It was odd using 4 viewports with the orthographics + perspective for the first time (all stuffed into a VGA resolution monitor). I followed instructions with the promise of getting an animation as an end result. When I was done, "all" I had was a series of images. Then I thought "that's it?! What am I supposed to do with that?" Of course, that's all it is, animation: a series of images, played back in quick succession. But the software we had, at that point, lacked that crucial last step of being able to actually do just that. Or, more specifically, the computer itself probably wasn't powerful enough to do this in the first place. It would probably have to have been shot onto film to be seen for what it was meant to be.
All those old files are un-revisitable. I had surfers on waves, dinosaurs eating green leaves, self-assembling polyhedra, all marvelously primitive in style (I mean: masterpieces now lost forever). If the floppies are still knocking around in my parents' place, they still would not be compatible with anything existing today. Let us hope the efforts of today's digital work are more enduring.
Well, that's enough of aimlessly wandering about on memory lane. Now back to the now.