Daniel Savage & Wondersauce: Yule Log 2.0

Yule Log 2.0 re-imagines the traditional Yule Log through a collection of 53 short films by illustrators, animators, directors, and creative coders. First televised in 1966 by WPIX-TV as a gift to viewers, the Log has since burned itself into our hearts.

Yule Log 2.0 is a project curated by Daniel Savage and built by Wondersauce. In total, 65 artists participated in the project.

Yule Log 2.0 Artists
Alicia Reece
Andrew Stubbs Johnston
Benjamin Gray
Bianca Meier
Brian & Brad Hasse
Brett Renfer
Cesar Pelizer
Charlie Whitney
Chris Lohouse
Chris Kelly
Conrad McLeod
Colin Hesterly
Damien Correll
Daniel Leyva
David Kamp (Sound design)
Emory Allen
Erica Gorochow
Eric Epstein
Erik Karasyk
Frank Chimero
Greg Gunn
Hush Studios
James Curran
James Zanoni
Jeroen Krielaars
Jesse Benjamin
Jerry Liu
JK Keller
Joe Russ
Jordan Bruner
Josh Parker
Joshua Catalano
Joshua Goodrich
Jorge R. Canedo Estrada
Julian Glander
Keetra Dean Dixon
Kyle Sauer
Laura Alejo
Lee Gingold
Leta Sobierajski
Lucas Redfern Brooking
Lucas Zanotto
Mathew Lucas
Matthias Hoegg
Matt Delbridge
Michael Fuchs
Nick Hum
Patrick Finn
Patrick Macomber
Paul Windle
Philip Sierzega
Robert Loebel
Ross Philips
Script & Seal
Seth Hulewat
Shane Griffin
Skip Hursh
Tricia Desjardins
Will Anderson
Yassir Rasan
Yussef Cole
Yvonne Romano

Daniel was kind enough to share more about the creation of the project, including the original brief. Read about it after the jump!

How long did it take to get the project up and running?

The idea came about mid October, I ran it by a few friends with positive feedback, then started taking it serious shortly after, so just over a month.

How did you find/select/approach the artists for the project?

Rule number one for me was keeping it diverse. A lot of community projects tend to stick within their own niche industry, which has great results, but I wanted it to be more broad. I encouraged collaboration which is why there were more artists than submissions. And I specifically invited a lot of people who don’t animate professionally, which was the most exciting part for me. Inspiring people to take a stab at animation who don’t do it normally makes me really happy.

How’d you hook up with Wondersauce and what went into developing the backend?

I grew up with John Sampogna, one of the founders, the first time I got drunk was with him. It was dumb luck that we ended up with talents that compliment each other. Eric Mayville headed up the site with a developer. The biggest hurtle was figuring out how to take advantage of Vimeo’s API and play all 53 videos in a continuous smooth loop, but using black magic and this thing called “code” they figure it out!

Do you have any advice for people who are trying to carve out time for personal projects outside of their professional work?

I feel like I say to friends “Thanks for the invite, but…” a lot due to personal projects. You have to want it. If you want it, you will find the time. Also being freelance helps!

Some of the most interesting contemporary works have been self-initiated curation projects (PSST…Pass It On, Late Night Work Club, Sound Creatures, Animation Sequence Project, Loopdeloop, etc.). Do you have any advice for people who would like to start their own curation projects?

I think if the idea is good enough, and there is some sort of proof you will deliver, people will respond. When I wrote up my brief it felt similar to giving my students an assignment. As professionals we miss those fun school assignments where we can experiment without a client. Personal projects are great, but having a micro brief to react to sparks ideas you might not normally come up with.

What do you think makes a successful brief?
I guess what makes a successful brief is being clear and solving a problem (in this case, the lack of fun Yule Logs) I also put together a FAQ after I got some questions, which helped a lot, especially since there was some language barriers with the international group.

Yule Log 2.0 Brief
Yule Log 2.0 FAQ

What’s coming next for Yule Log 2.0?
If there is enough interest, this may become an annual tradition.

The project will be screened at Big Screen Plaza on rotation throughout the winter, as well as being projected on the Manhattan Bridge in DUMBO nightly from December 12th till the 23rd (shout out to HUSH for hooking this up)