“Sound and Geometry.” What visions do these two words evoke, if you could visualize them any way you liked? That was the creative brief that SR Partners extended to 30 digital magicians — er, motion graphics designers — with an offer to pair each of them up with an eminent sound designer to see what would happen. The results are collected in a short film called Resonance, which SR Partners is touring around to film and design festivals.
[Skip ahead to :50 – the front matter is interminable.]
“This simple brief gave us the scope to explore what ever we wanted and have some fun and experiment outside of our commercial work,” Simon Jones of SR Partners tells Co.Design. “We both believe that experimenting and R&D are crucial to succeed and this was a chance to do that.”
The results of so many interpretations are, as one would expect, a mixed bag: many — especially the first several clips — conform all too well to what one bored mograph designer satirically describes as “morphing b/w shit.” (His film is damn good – I wish it were included in Resonance.) But pretty soon some actual interesting experiments to start to appear. One, by Korb and Michael Fakest, shows a pulsating Moebius strip hovering over desert Bedouins like something out of a Neill Blomkamp film. Another flashes a THX-esque rectangle onscreen, which becomes a translucent membrane stretched to the breaking point by an onyx phoenix trapped inside. And yet another by JR Canest and David Kamp takes a sharp left turn from dark, burbling dystopias and burps out a series of jaunty 2-D shapes dancing to a pop tune — like the classic “Let’s All Go To The Lobby” drive-through movie ads updated for the digital age.
In the end, the clips that reflect or intersect with physical reality are more immersive than the purely pixel-driven fantasias, but all 11 minutes of Resonance are worth watching — not just as a highlight reel of motion graphics and sound designers to watch (or hire), but as a snapshot of where the medium is stagnating and where fresh ideas could come from next.