Wednesday, 27 July 2011

Damian Gascoigne debuts 'Muso Soup'

Muso Soup is a true modern parable brought to life by the deftly cast Mark Heap (of channel 4's Green Wing fame) and fellow director Steve May as our heroes, Electro-Stasis and In-cider. Damian's exceptional narrative captivates the audience by taking a swipe at pompous, pseudo muso intellectuals. As we watch our heroes play a ridiculous game of one-upmanship they become more and more desperate in their futile attempts to argue their point. There is only one solution.....cyber intervention.

We caught up with Damian to talk shop and find out what it's like venturing into new, animated waters...

P.P. So, who is Damian Gascoigne?

D.G. A carbon based bipedal organism capable of four thousand calculations per second. Known for his gluttony and his wantonness he has led a dissolute and wayward existence. Saved only by the charity of Picasso Pictures who took him in and nurtured the small spark of talent they found, and by sheer determination fashioned a polite and hard working animation director from the roughest of clays.

P.P. You've been cultivating your style for years, is this a turning point for you?

D.G. It tries to connect the hand drawn aesthetic I have developed over many years, with the 3D computer realm. It is a dialogue between traditional and digital methods, between 2D and 3D, and an attempt to open up the visual language of contemporary 3D animation to new ways of designing and new ways of moving. It is also a watershed in terms of my work. Having spent twenty years as a strictly 2D designer, animator and director, I have invested more than two years of my time to learn about 3D computer animation. Not just how to do it but more importantly how to do it my way. It took many painful hours, days, weeks and months, and an enormous amount of help and goodwill from a lot of very clever and talented people. Like a true 'poacher turned gamekeeper' I now love the medium, and can't wait to explore it further.

P.P. Over the years you've worked on so many different projects, is there one that you feel best sums up your aesthetic?

D.G. I only really rate my personal work, as this has been where I have had the chance to do what I want. The film 'A Cream and Two Plains', in which my mother narrated stories of family life is the most personal film I have made. The animation installation 'The Love Books' is the most experimental piece, and by far the strongest work I have made.

P.P. What made you get into animation in the first place?

D.G. Company. Music. Giving orders. Applause.

P.P. Your living in Korea now, is it inspiring you in new ways?

D.G. Korea is about as different a life experience as I could ask for in many ways. It is a dynamic, modern country, yet nothing fundamental has changed for hundreds of years. Its population is almost exclusively Korean, and coming from multicultural London this is a big shock. I stand out wherever I go. I am married to a Korean woman and having a brand new dual heritage baby in this environment, where such events are extremely rare, is quite a challenge. The extended family are fantastic, and we receive daily help and support raising our daughter. When we venture out we are regularly stopped in supermarkets and department stores by Korean people fascinated by our mixed race child. Thankfully the attention is overwhelmingly positive, so the sooner we can get her started in a modelling career the better.

Muso Soup was written and created by Damian Gascoigne and produced by Melissa Venet at Picasso Pictures. Adelphoi Music provided the uniquely eclectic score and excellent sound design.

Check out a sneak peek from Muso Soup and more from Damian below...

Full credits for Muso Soup:

Damian Gascoigne
Melissa Venet at Picasso Pictures
Mark Heap
Steve May
Music and Sound
Adelphoi Music
Additional Music
“Iag Bari” Fanfare Ciocalie
copyright Piranha Music
3D Animation
Jonathan Harris
Joe Sparrow
Blanca Martinez
3D Modelling
Jonathan Harris
Mahesh Swarmy
Joe Sparrow
Emmie Bednall
Additional Graphics
Nuno Neves
Rod Main
Special Thanks
Shash Lall
Supported by
Kingston University

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