EMA 2012 by Sehsucht

Sehsucht brings the 2012 MTV EMA titles to life by crafting a 3D zoetrope, a fast-moving carousel that evokes the illusion of motion through a fast succession of static elements which come to life with a stroboscopic light.

From Sehsucht:

The animated sequence is a journey through time and space, transcending the ancient Zoetrope concept which stems from pre-Christian Chinese culture to our modern global society. A band lives the American Dream, symbolizing the ascent of a basement musician to stardom across the horizontal zoetrope layers. They move from the underground scene to stardom with the help of their fans and social networks, finally reach the top of the carousel and perform at the MTV EMA.

The realization of the main trailer and more than a dozen alterations raised technical challenges and led Sehsucht to finding unique solutions. To be able to create an extremely realistic look, Maxwell Render was chosen as render technology. 3D design was implemented in the character design at an early stage.

The tool Pixologic Sculptris enabled intuitive character work by designing 3D characters and using the models instantly. Animating the elements was a further challenge since the complete zoetrope is a virtual scale model, nothing is faked. Therefore, everything had to work in loops built in 24 single ‘sculptures’.

Production Company: Sehsucht Berlin GmbH & Co KG, Berlin/Germany
Director: Mate Steinforth
Artists: Remo Gambacciani, Helge Kiehl, Florian Panzer, David Weidemann, Christian Zschunke
Producer: Christina Geller, Christian Jacks
Music: Nikolai von Sallwitz, Sound Architecture
Client & Lead Creative Direction: VIMN MTV World Design Studio, Milan/Italy
Creative Director: Roberto Bagatti
Associate Creative Director: Anna Caregnato
Senior Designer: Giorgio Schwarz
Art Director: James Walpole/Carlos Carrasco
Senior Producer: Cristina Mazzocca
Coordinator: Beatrice Cardile

Cinema 4D, After Effects, Maxwell Render, Sculptris

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About the author

Ivan Cruz

/ ivancruz.mx
I’m a mexican-born graphic designer & motion artist based in Mexico where I live with my botswana-born, kiwi-raised, canadian-girlfriend and our half-mexican half-canadian, kiwi-born baby girl. Bit of a mouthful, I know.



This is really cool, but it would be cooler if they printed it with a 3D printer and actually built it.


Absolutely great!

Although I agree with Sarah and Mate above about the 3D rapid prototyping I’d say the thing that misses the biggest trick (and it’s something that I did myself on my own rather large Phonotrope for a BBC title sequence for the film Holy Flying Circus and something every bigger budget version of the technique has done – Fuze Tea/Edf although the Fuze tea one looked like it was done frame by frame) is having such a controlled camera.

Of all the experiments I’ve done on the process since 2006 the warmest and most immediate effect of the magic that happens (and it really is magic!) is with a hand held camera and when one has a motion control (or highly over-polished) camera as the riding camera point throughout the film it takes that away and looses something really important.

I know where it comes from as the powers that be that are usually involved with the process seem to see hand held camera too scarily scrappy for something they are chucking their money at.

Having said that the process I (and a fair few others) have been playing with all base themselves around the camera frame rate and a high shutter speed creating the ‘interruptions’ that make the animation come to life and I notice here it says it’s a strobe so maybe that’s why.

Still – i hope there’s some footage taken by the people who made it that have more life to it.

It’s pretty blooming impressive regardless – well done Sehsucht!

For lots of really great examples of a more low-key (and dare I say it exciting) variation see the Phonotropia blog..


and the Monty Python thing is here


Sorry! Ha ha ha. 3D rendered.

And there’s me being sucked into it good and proper – testament to what a good job they’ve done!

Totally not reading the words.

(follow the links above for some real magic then!!!)

Lucas Redfern Brooking

Love it Mate, It’s great to be able to see the breakdown too.


Has anybody seen the Pixar exhibition in Germany. They had that stop motion merry-go-round for real with all their characters!


very interesting artcle

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