John Whitney's Old School Motion Graphics



I think sometimes it's good to look back. Frontier's most recent creative challenge 'Loop',  has got me thinking about pure abstraction and pattern making in film. John Whitney could be described as one of the founders of the motion graphics medium. He is most famous for his abstracted motion artworks but also did commercial jobs. Check out his collaboration with Hitchcock on Vertigo's title sequence.

Looking at his work now, of course they look dated, but there is still something that's appealing and interesting. I reckon the influence is still relevant. The geometry and the movement in relation to the sound track is still visually stimulating and not something easily achieved. Interestingly, the analogue devise Whitney used was built by converting a mechanism from a World War II M-5 Antiaircraft Gun Director!

Thinking about Whitney's influence reminded me of a work by Loris Greaud that I saw in Paris, visually hypnotizing but also arresting and domineering. With the gallery filled with these videos and a strobe light popping, it made for a pretty stomach churning art experience (not that the French couple in the corner who were doing more than just frenching seemed to notice…. I kid you not!).

Anyway, an interesting comparison between old and new.

Logan Bradley