Idea

My bachelor thesis is an 3d animated shortfilm, which is based on Edgar Allan Poe’s short story The Sphinx.
The story takes place during the cholera epidemic, presumably around 1832. The main character, fearing the forthcoming death,  hides and isolates himself in his house. Every morning the newspaper announces more victims of the epidemic. Death lurks in every corner and as the days pass by, the character turns more and more insane. In the end he sees a monster, the sphinx, as a symbol of his unavoidable death. Compared to the character the audience realize that the monster is just a shadow of a spider, which crawls on the window.

Process

Devoloping an interpretation or rather an abbreviated version of the original story. Using storyboards as a visualization method to create blueprints of how the shot sequence should be (via Adobe Photoshop). Working with animatics to test timing, dramaturgy and sound issues (Adobe After Effects). Being inspired by shadow plays I wanted to do plain 3d models with distinctive silhouettes. Moreover using three-point lighting with high contrasts accents the objects even more. Conspicuous is the Keyframe animation, which is rendered with 10 FPS in order to achieve a stop motion impression. Using Blocking as a special animation technique shows no interpolation between the individual poses, which strengthens the snatchy look (3ds Max). Post-production includes video editing, color grading and some effects.

Intention

Poes stories often deal with death and decay by telling about epidemics or other catastrophes. Therefore I decided to show such a disaster without showing too much details. In contrast to Poes’ original story my interpretation focuses on 1 main character – a desperate man, who is overcome with death. Aim is to show his increasing paranoia, which leads to a total over-interpretation, with an abstract animation technique.

 

 

 

Animatic

 

My contribution
Concept • Storyboard • Animatic • Environment • Lighting • Animation

Music composed by  Daniel Denne. Thanks a lot Dude!