A Little Bit of This, A Little Bit of That…

It’s been a while since I’ve made a combo post, but I’m feeling schizophrenic tonight, so I figured what the hell. What follows is an undiluted sample from the brackish backwaters of my mind.

MGM Grand

DeGaull Vang read my post about Kid Convergence and spotted a nice exemplar of the new paradigm on the MGM Grand site created by Montreal-based Diesel Marketing. (Actually, Glenn Riverside posted the same link in the comments, too.)


Click the “Maximum Vegas” link to see the pertinent part of the site. This bit of work isn’t really breaking new ground; many sites feature large-frame Flash video. But I do think it’s noteworthy for two reasons.

One: It’s a beautiful blend of live action, vfx and design. Yes, yes, I know, it all feels very 2advanced, but I’d argue it’s an appropriate choice, given the site’s target audience. Some of the transitions are beautifully realized. My personal favorite is the sequence between Accommodations and Dining, when the hallway deconstructs itself to become the bar.

Two: The user is encouraged to scrub not just the video, but the entire site. In this case, the scrub tool builds a clever “around the clock” metaphor, which is fun, but I’m more interested in the linkage between the navigation and the position of the “playhead.” Video on the web can be just as decentralized as any other content on the web. There is no beginning and end, only positions which can represent content states or spurs of activity.

I know, I know. I’m sounding ridiculously pretentious. I’m even disgusting myself a little. But what I’m trying to do is break down sites that are employing convergent design techniques, find the interesting nuggets and then examine them under a microscope. As I said, the MGM site isn’t really doing anything new, but it is part of a new wave.

There is more to its success than simply some slick video work. I believe the reason it’s successful is because the video work is smoothly integrated into the rest of the online experience. (Oh shit, I just used the “E” word. Now someone’s going to argue that convergent design is really the same thing as experience design. Which it isn’t. But that’s another post.)

Lumen Eclipse

Lumen Eclipse is going to be featuring a wide variety of interesting work daily from 5am to 1am in their media arts gallery in Harvard Square. Even if you can’t make it, check out the Gallery and Artist Archive on the site for a grab-bag of video goodies.

Some, like “The Tale of How” and “An Eye for Annai,” have been featured on Motionographer and Tween, but there are several pieces I’ve never seen before. Leeanne Williams’ “Caesura” is beautifully moody and Ruth Lingford’s “Old Fools” is chock full of visual poetry that’s worth checking out.

Mating Call

Dexter Randazzo (formerly of Lifelong Friendship Society but now freelance producing) brought an interesting short film to my attention called “Mating Call” that’s on the latest RES DVD.


It’s a quirky little narrative that casts Man as a neanderthal-ish hornball in search of Woman, ruling over a heap of rubble like a goddess, unhindered by a bra and ready to bring music to the world. Also check out the rest of Radical Friend’s work.

Aniboom Contest

I’ve never heard of Aniboom before, but apparently they’re having an animation contest with a first place prize of $25k USD. That’s a lot of green.

Get details on the site.

About the author

Justin Cone

/ justincone.com
Together with Carlos El Asmar, Justin co-founded Motionographer, F5 and The Motion Awards. He currently lives in Austin, Texas with is wife, son and fluffball of a dog. Before taking on Motionographer full-time, Justin worked in various capacities at Psyop, NBC-Universal, Apple, Adobe and SCAD.


Sir Monkey

Totally agree on the MGM piece, great concept, very clever for a hotel! I know I know, that style of transitions have been done before, but I still won’t take anything away from the fact that it’s a great piece and it’s extremely successful for the brand.

Nice work Diesel.

Glenn Riverside

Hey, I feel like I got shafted – if you look at the comments in the Kid Convergence post, I’m the one that posted a link to the MGM Grand site… But whatev, it’s cool, I’ll just gently cry myself to sleep again tonight.


Shit, man, I’m sorry about that. I totally missed that comment. I edited the post above to try and set things straight(er).

Glenn Riverside

Ha, it’s cool, I just felt neglected and used. Viva la motionographer!


just a f….. commercial, I’m tired of this hollywoodians visuals, bitches on flash 8. sometimes Technology Is Not Sexy Anymore (T.I.N.S.A)… you guys !

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