Red Car

Wednesday, July 9th, 2008 Horrorthon Posts

Same movie. Red car.

My grandmother’s Cord 812, exhibited in the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Museum, is a rich, cold red that’s extremely hard for me to reproduce (since its deep pigmentation and high reflectivity respond unpredictably to different lighting, making it difficult to extract the actual paint color from photographs). But I began this whole thing by looking at (and riding in) her car, and when I put together my first, rudimentary 2006 proposal, I made the Cord red.

A year and a half later, now that the final animation is done, I remembered that prototype and decided to give that particular “Mör Mör” (Swedish for “Grandma”) red paint its moment in the sun (or in the glum overcast light). Hence, the “Red Car” edition (which is otherwise identical to the original). (The off-white body paint from the first version is actually based on a 1936 color called “cigarette cream,” thus tying two Horrorthon conversation topics together by observing an earlier decade when the word “cigarette” automatically meant “sophisticated; luxurious; wealthy” even in the inoccuous context of paint chip labels.)

What’s funny (and octopunk will especially appreciate this) is that I’m going to tell the museum that I did the red version as a tribute to my grandmother’s car, but, from a completely different point of view, it’s actually an homage to Frank Miller (and, specifically, to Miller’s insane pole-vault from the world of India ink to the world of CGI, which I did not understand or appreciate, until, suddenly, I did). Nobody says “this is red” like Frank Miller. Remembering Sin City, I felt like the Sorcerer’s Apprentice, foolishly playing with the Master’s magic apparatus, drunk with the excitement of RED PAINT!

TECHNICAL UPDATE: It took about a week (round the clock) to render all the new shots. I kept all the 2Dblur frames from the other version so I could just re-apply the vectors; the blur procedure ignores color and focuses on pixel-based movement so results are identical. I don’t know what, if anything, the museum will do with this: as far as I’m concerned they’re entirely free to exhibit whichever one they prefer, or switch between them indiscriminately.