Posts Tagged Creativity
Cinematography is perhaps the ultimate challenge for a TV anime to overcome. Inherent of television anime are limited budgets and tight schedules, meaning that the resources and time provided are not enough to allow for the same level of quality that we see in movies or elsewhere. And while quality often refers to detail in the art and animation, such as more complex or frequent sakuga sequences, it also means an improved cinematography where shots have more variation and camera motion is more prominent. Since the production schedule and resources are difficult for a TV anime, they must rely on a number of industry techniques to make a finished produced on time, with perhaps the most recurrent being the use of shooting dialogue scenes using still characters with only their mouths moving. And in terms of cinematography, the shots are often flat and still, making it easier for the animators to anime with a consistent level of acceptable quality. However, this is difficult to do when the anime’s story or purpose resolves around the characters acting or performing or moving in complex ways. This leads us to Ping Pong the Animation, one of the most acclaimed and illustrious anime of the year, and its brilliant and artistic use of cinematography to convey action throughout the series. While the series was overflowing with symbolism, the topic of this post is primarily on its cinematic techniques that were some of the most innovative, resourceful, and memorable in recent memory.
Some will argue that sakuga is the pinnacle of animation. It would be hard to argue against that. Ultimately, sakuga is known for its unparalleled quality, its aesthetic ingenuity, its dramatic emphasis, and its overall impact. There’s a reason why sakuga is so revered among zealous anime fans and rightfully so. However, in an anime celebrated for its brilliant animation, it’s the exact opposite that frequently stood out to me as having the most effectiveness. In fact, it was the absence of animation in KILL la KILL that earns a spot in my 12 Days of Anime, or more specifically, the impression from Nui’s lack of animation. I want to bring attention to how her simplistic motions were a complete contrast to everything else visually in KILL la KILL, and how her animations were some of the most effective that I’ve seen in an anime.
Back whenever these episodes of anime aired: how detailing the background characters in Isshuukan Friends represents Kaori’s growth as a character, wondering if Adashino-sensei is Ginko’s only friend in Mushishi Zoku Shou, being frustrated with the expositions in No Game No Life, and why I’m going to miss Ryuugajou Nanana no Maizoukin when it’s over.
Back during the Winter 2014 anime season: what about the setting of Toaru Hikuushi e no Koiuta makes it one of my favorite anime of the season, thoughts on how people grew to tolerate or accept the excessive fanservice in KILL la KILL, how changing color schemes impacted the atmosphere in Noragami, and the ideal way to end Silver Spoon S2.
12 Days of Anime (2013) – Day 4 – Unexpected Character Development in Stella Jogakuin Koutou-ka C3-bu
With an overabundance of moe, slice-of-life anime produced every year, it’s a real challenge for each show to distinguish and differentiate themselves from each other. In a genre that is oversaturated in mediocrity, a series will be required to employ a significant amount of creativity, originality or innovation in order for it to stand above the rest. Even if it can’t shake the label of ‘cute girls doing whatever’, an anime can achieve excellence through a variety of ways. For some, it’s comedy (Love Lab) and for others, it’s chemistry (Yuyushiki). But for Stella Jogakuin Koutou-ka C3-bu, an anime about an all-girls airsoft/survival games club, it was a brilliant display of character development and introspection that allowed the anime to distance itself from the median and become one of the better, more enjoyable anime of 2013.
Fight are fought and won with Fragments. The stronger Fragment, the most likely you are to win your battles. But Fragments alone aren’t necessarily the only factor, nor even the central factor, when resolving conflicts in Needless. It is how these Fragments are used, through intelligence or innovation, which ultimately decides the victor and the defeated. So, is it possible to win against a Needless with not only one of the strongest fragments but also one of the greater intellects, too?