1.09.2008

Carnival Time!


While most of the country is winding down from the holidays, here in Nola we're perking up for Mardi Gras. Today I bought our first king cake, a carnival tradition. Inside the cake is hidden a tiny plastic baby, and custom states that whoever "gets the baby" has to buy the next cake. Its basically like a giant (15", sometimes larger) cinnamon roll, covered in icing and colored sugar, sometimes powdered, sometimes sprinkles, depending on where you get it from. This one is apple-filled, mmmmmmmmmmm....and I guarantee it'll be gone in a couple of days :).....All of the local bakeries and grocery stores will carry them until the season is over. Mardi Gras Day is Feb. 5 this year, always 47 days before Easter, originally a chance to be gluttonous before abstaining for Lent. It is the only entertainment venue in the world where the stars foot the bill and the audience gets a free ride. By law, parades cannot be corporately sponsored and the krewes that ride the floats are set up as nonprofit organizations, fundraising for money. There is also no governing authority to license products, no official Mardi Gras t-shirt or poster. Like Christmas or Halloween, it belongs to everyone. And although it has earned a reputation for raunchy displays, mostly due to tourists drinking too much and getting caught up in the atmosphere on Bourbon Street, it is actually a very family-friendly event.

Today I have off of work, and plan to spend it animating, finishing up the alley clip so I can move on to the cafe scene. Hopefully later today you'll be able to watch the clip, I've been holding out b/c I want to post it in its entirety. I struggled this week with the rig for Su's airborn yank (she tries to run and Herbie grabs her train and pulls her to him). Finally got something set up to work and then when I was editing the footage, photoshopping out the rig, I realized.....the light changes in every frame just about (parades pass at the end of the alley....its subtle but its there)....so when I went to erase the rig, I couldn't work from the clean plate I had taken, b/c of the changing lighting....had to sort of piece together bits of background by layering several frames on top of each other and erasing.....it turned out ok.....just ok, but live and learn...I'm moving on....
Here's a little bit of greenscreen serendipity......in this shot, Herbie stoops to grab Su's train.....in the background, a Mardi Gras reveler (basic Barbi-style dolls that I suited up) and a greenscreen......when I layered in the float footage, a real waving arm lined up perfectly with one of the dolls, creating a fantastic illusion....only visible for a second....heres a screen...


6 comments:

Shelley Noble said...

What a sensational illusion, J. Wouldn't it be great to create this effect on purpose for something?

Anyhoo, now I have to say goodbye as I go search the house for anything apple-filled. Thanks a lot. :)

gl. said...

i thought getting the baby meant that you would have good luck in the next year. if it means i buy the next king cake, i don't -want- to find the baby! :)

Sven Bonnichsen said...

Happy pre-Mardi Gras!

Darkstrider said...

Hmmm.... I wonder if you could have made some kind of hidden rig stashed under Suzie's skirt/train? That way, no photochopping.

UbaTuber said...

Thanks peeps, sorry 'bout the sugar craving creation, Shell :)

Mikey, I thought about it, about trying to figure a way to hide the rig, wouldve been difficult but maybe possible...I really wanted the experience of photoshopping out the wire though, I just didnt think about the changes in lighting...

mefull said...

What a cool and interesting tradition, hiding a baby in a cake, I wonder what the origin of that one is?

Looking forward to seeing the film.

Don't you just love it when you see the green screen serendipity stuff happening - fun stuff.