Furry Crowdfunding Week in Review: 8-18-13
Stop-motion anthro art with Sanpomichi and The Labyrinth
This week a couple of gentle, warm stop-motion animations. Now, it may be odd, possibly insane, to talk about the warm, sentimental story of the Minotaur of the Greek labyrinth, so we’ll start with a sweet slice of life from Japan, and then move on to the love between a mother and her son.
And then a bunch of other stuff.
Sanpomichi, A Little Oze
It’s hard to find words to describe the delicate, gentle beauty of this film project. I’d begin with “Kind of like the new Miyazaki film, elegant, a little pointless, but the pointlessness is a part of the beauty.” Then I’d try to compare it to “Blood Tea and Red String.” I’d say, “but it’s nothing like ‘Blood Tea and Red String.’ That’s a totally different sort of beautiful pointlessness.” Ultimately I went to Wikipedia, which gave me “Wabi-Sabi,” the delicate beauty given by time, imperfection, repetition, and the basic temporary nature of life.
Protip: you can ALWAYS find the words on Wikipedia.
Sanpomichi is a slice-of-life film project, the story of a mouse who lives with her mother in a small apartment, the first a little worn from caring for mom, the second a bit stubborn, set in her ways, and the two have been in this pattern for some time. The title translates, roughly, as “a path, regularly and thoughtfully walked,” and that sums up the film project–finding beauty in the everyday. It’s a little bit “Fantastic Mr. Fox,” mostly in its artistic style and soundtrack, and a lot quirky, gentle, indie film. Take a look, this kind of storytelling isn’t for everyone, it’s a distinctly Japanese tale, at the same time ordinary and approachable. Cute mice, too.
Fair warning, mature subject matter and some NSFW images in KS page.
There’ve been a few movies made of the story of the Minotaur and Theseus. Usually they’re action/horror and don’t end well for the Minotaur, who, fair enough, has the weight of mythology against him. The Labyrinth isn’t guaranteed a happy ending (for the Minotaur, at least) but it’s a sympathetic story, focusing on love and pain in a family torn by epic stress.
Much of the narrative weight of Labyrinth is carried by mother and child, Queen Pasiphae and Asterion. From Pasiphae’s point of view, the story of the minotaur is that of her deformed and savage son, thrown into a labyrinth prison, and then used to terrorize the Greek people as the beast their sons and daughters are sacrificed to. Pasiphae must rescue her son before the darkness, isolation and madness (and Theseus) take him.
Long story short. Literally, since poster Tom Brierton originally created a feature-length film, but cut it to a more realistic 18-minute short–animating a stop-motion feature length film without Hollywood-style backing just wasn’t realistic. Brierton’s models are detailed, sympathetic, frightening. How can you not make a comparison to the mythological monsters of Harryhausen? Brierton has been limited to cold CGI animation, so–and this is a problem with all Kickstarter animation projects–it’s hard to say what the final vision will look like, but all the elements of the project are laid out on his KS page, and it’s a strong preview of what might be to come.
Note: Images used above are included to promote the work of crowdfunding artists, and are owned by the original creator.
Flynn: A Frog’s Journey (Books/Print. Ends: 9/13/2013)
Children’s/YA book, featuring a very stylish tree frog’s quest to restore his wife to health. (Don’t bother watching the “stock footage marathon” video…cover illustration is really strong and vivid!)
Samurai Chinchilla: The Animated Short (Film/Animation/Theater. Ends: 9/12/2013)
Relaunch of the project, now with more stills, concept art, and of course an origami kitsune.
The Labyrinth (Film/Animation/Theater. Ends: 9/12/2013)
Short film: a sympathetic and stop-motion look at the birth and life of Asterius, the Greek minotaur
Monster Derby (Tabletop Games. Ends: 9/11/2013)
A quick and silly board game of racing monsters. (The first 20 seconds of the KS video is particularly worth watching. Maybe not so furry but cute werewolf and minotaur.)
Kitsune: Of Foxes and Fools (Tabletop Games. Ends: 9/11/2013)
A card game of tricky kitsune plotting against foolish mortals, and possibly a tanuki. (Wait for the line in the video, “These are the foxes we’re not using.” Kickstarter proceeds are going toward improving the artwork, so hard to get an idea of the final product.)
Attack to the Pantry (Tabletop Games. Ends: 10/13/2013)
Old School Warner Bros cartoon style card game: Scoundrel animals animals raiding Grandma’s pantry for whatever they can carry away! (Page is mostly in, or originally in, Italian, but the sketchy concept art is fun and universal!)
Dark Stalkers: The Movie (…Meh. Ends: 9/12/2013)
Talbain and Felicia are so cute, I want to love the KS of “Darkstalkers,” but…there is NOTHING in this page worth looking at…
Planet Earth Superheroes (…Meh. Ends: 9/13/2013)
Some cute illustrations in this “Kid Heroes Transform to Super Animals to Save the World” movie pitch, but the long, dull video’s a bit of a killer…
Discord in Equestria (…Meh. Offbeatr prelaunch voting)
…Huh? I’m pretty sure there’s an adult novel/game concept. It involves ponies, and discord. But the concept is more cryptic and garbled than a collection of “Myst” outtakes. Remember: You have only yourself to blame if you let this slip by.
Animal Parade (Ends: 9/1/2013)
A faintly creepy interactive art exhibit and collection of colorful, marching animals with huge, staring, dead eyes
All my life I have wanted to be a double-pig early bird. Share this opportunity with me now.
Hunter Clark’s Sublime Creatures (Ends: 9/1/2013)
(NSFW) An artsy collection of animal-headed women, artistic nudes of mothers, mothers-to-be, and madonnas.
More about the beauty of the pregnant female body combined with animal symbolism than hybrids and anthros, but an interesting take on hybrids and lots of African carnivores.
Rocko, The Christmas Bat (Ends: 8/21/2013)
Soft and friendly story of a forgotten halloween decoration that wants to be a Christmas decoration.
Jason and the Monster King (Ends: 9/13/2013)
Children’s graphic novel/ebook in the “kid hero visits dangerous magical otherworld” genre. Cute costumes and main character design!
Woof — Dog Themed Pinback Buttons (Ends: 8/25/2013)
Cute, quirky, 1.25-inch buttons for your jacket or whichever. Cute little guys! Cats too.
Scroll down a little, the “extra dog” pins are adorable :) Watch the artist on DeviantArt or FA
Piki Charms (Ends: 9/21/2013)
Tiny charms for phones, etc, with an amazing range of designs, by DrawWithLaura
The goal is a little high for the nature of this product, but it’s to fund some business capital equipment. But it’s fixed-funding, so no accidental scams.
Birdland (Ends: 8/22/2013)
A comic set in New York City, thick with jazz, noir, murder, and anthropomorphic birds
Owlgirls (Ends: 9/1/2013)
A “paranormal detective” genre comic, three shadowy sisters touched by the goddess of Death. Oh, they have owl heads.
Flashy the Overlord (Ends: 9/4/2013)
A graphic novel with simple watercolor illustrations about, possibly, coming of age and taking the throne in a fantasy kingdom.
There’s a strong interactive element in this project, community-building and writing yourself into the plot.
Danger Squad (Ends: 9/9/2013)
Sci-Fi Comedy featuring a crazy captain and malajusted crew, and a nice range of anthro characters and villians.
Woof Yorkers (Ends: 9/12/2013)
Cartoons from the dog park, a “keep the site alive” campaign from Woofyorkers.com
I’m on the fence on this one. Occasionally clever, occasionally cute, but it’s no “Housepets.”
Cat’s View Feature Film (Ends: 8/21/2013)
A crime thriller filmed from a cat witness’s point of view, along with information about the life of a feral cat, trap/neuter/return projects, etc.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Blood Brothers (Ends: 8/23/2013)
A short, live-action TMNT film with some amazing props already in the works.
From the people who brought you Marvel Zombies: The Movie: The Trailer…. Disorienting KS video, total lack of business plan, but nice mock-ups.
Anthro: Animating the Soul (Ends: 8/27/2013)
A documentary look at beloved anthro characters and their creators.
Stitchfan has broken this project up into a series of small-goal IGGs, interesting model and I hope to see it succeed!
Werewolves of Predatory Moon (Ends: 9/1/2013)
Indie low-budget “creature feature” with a pack of werewolves and a commitment to costumes rather than CGI.
I can’t imagine what their faux hair budget is. Check the Predatory Moon website for more images.
BiPolar Bears (Ends: 9/1/2013)
Animated series about manic and depressive polar bear twins Manny and Preston (orderilies in a psych institute), the Post-Traumatic Puffins, Randolf the Alcoholic Reindeer, and other friends.
Bleah. The promo vid is “join me in my philosophy” rather than “here’s this cool product idea.” That plus very high goal/60-day campaign is a bad sign.
The Ballad of Thundercluck, Chicken of Thor (Ends: 9/4/2013)
“Half mortal. Half god. All natural chicken.” Short animated film with a celtic style, like a silly Secret of Kells. Ride with Thundercluck into glory!
Sanpomichi, A Little Oze (Ends: 9/9/2013)
Stop-motion film of a mouse’s daily life, her habits, her family challenges. Graceful slice-of-life.
I’d love to watch this back-to-back with Blood Tea and Red String. For contrast.
Ponies for Pathfinder Setting Handbook (Ends: 8/24/2013)
A MLP-inspired tabletop RPG setting handbook–inspired by, but not derivitive of.
You may want to look at the Ponies for Pathfinder Racebook first. The writer seems to have tried to create a legitimate stand-alone product, not a MLP mashup or comedy piece. So, points for a clear goal.
Havok & Hijinks (Ends: 9/24/2013)
A disturbingly cute card game: you play a dragon hatchling that got kicked out of the parent’s den, and now it’s time to find your OWN hoard!
Fable Kart (Ends: 9/1/2013)
Multiplayer kart game in which the hare, turtle, and lots of animal friends crash and zoom around as they try to rescue the pages from Aesop’s storybook.
Edo Superstar (Ends: 9/5/2013)
Monkey-on-monkey fighting game with an ancient Japanese flavor from the maker of Yukiyoe Heroes (favorite video game characters as ancient Japanese block woodcuts.)
Honestly, I really don’t care about the game. I want the SWAG.
Roundscape: Adorevia (Ends: 9/10/2013)
An ambitious and smutty narrative-driven free-to-play 2D sprite game, looking for some floating decimal point between the hentai fandom and “Lord of the Rings.”
I don’t think Lord of the Rings had quite as many money shots. Is this a furry project? Not really, but poster Kaliyo tells me that we can expect furry companions and transformations. We’ll see.
No Good Deed: A Macrophilic Choose-Your-Own-Adventure (Ends: 9/13/2013)
A multi-ending illustrated book-on-CD, with transformations, macro growth, and the occasional demigod. And lots of naked giant dragon critters.
Look for DNA‘s work on FA.
Jax the Cat (Ends: 9/1/2013): A children’s comic series of talking cats, and a few talking mice. Very Don Bluth, and like Bluth’s work a mixture of charm and pain.
Out-Rigged Project (Ends: 9/12/2013): I wholeheartedly believe there’s an anthro video game concept in this wacky mish-mash of vague ideas, furry denial, wiki references, and typos…
Dog houses for rescued wolf-dogs (Ends: 8/24/2013): Project Pawsitive’s campaign to raise money to upgrade wolfdog repair and shelters at the Loki Clan Wolf Refuge.
Save Virachey Park (Ends: 9/10/2013): Campaign to install motion-trigger cameras in Virachey park, Cambodia, to show it’s a worthwhile preserve of endangerd species. Do it for the dholes!
…Just For Fun
La Divina Caricatura (Ends: 10/1/2013): An American Bunraku-style (Japanese puppet theater) production, a pop opera with a few beautifully done anthro puppets, worth a visit to the IGG for the characters.