Friday, July 25, 2014

"A Long Drawn-Out Trip" by Gerald Scarfe

From Vice.

If you don’t read newspapers, then you may know Gerald Scarfe as the guy whose 1971 animated film, A Long Drawn-Out Trip, with its trippy, amorphous visuals and cut-and-paste soundtrack, brought stream-of-consciousness art into the worlds of film and music, and earned him a breakthrough job directing the animation in Pink Floyd’s 1982 film The Wall.

The genesis of the film:

How did A Long Drawn-Out Trip come about?  
The BBC sent me to Los Angeles to work with a new animation technique that supposedly filled in “in between” cells of animations for you, cutting down on work immensely. When I got there it was complete cobblers, of course it didn’t—it just dissolved between images, melting through from one position to the next. But since I’d been flown there I decided to draw to make the best of it. I drew everything American I could think at the time—Coca-Cola, Mickey Mouse, Playboy, Black Power symbols—and then made a film of the images dissolving into each other. 
It comes across as very trippy and drug-fuelled.  
I suppose it does. I was never a druggy myself, apart from a few mild episodes with Pink Floyd. There were quite a lot of drugs around at that time so I drew Mickey Mouse smoking a spliff and so on. At the time, I was just doing it for fun and didn’t think it was particularly revolutionary. But when the guys from Pink Floyd saw it they thought I was fucking mad and wanted me to work with them. Funnily enough, years later I worked as production designer on Disney’s Hercules film. When they saw my drawings of Mickey with his spliff an audible gasp went around Disney. It was a bit of a shock for them.

 The full article here.

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