The Washington Post (!) recently asked me to make a series of six short stop-motion animations visualizing what’s happened with inflation in the U.S. since early 2020, for an interactive piece by Damian Paletta. I said yes!
The project was an absolute blast to work on, and a terrific challenge with all the air physics involved, plus a tight deadline.
Here are a couple of my lovely sketches based on the concept from the art director.
As you might imagine, making a balloon shrink and expand and float took some movie magic. By “magic,” I mean it was a lotta lotta DPNs to erase in Photoshop.
Here’s a wider behind-the-scenes look at my set. This shows my attempt to light everything to the best of my abilities.
Of course, I had to make a bunch of characters and props in a short amount of time for this project. Fortunately, they were all tiny and quick to design and make.
And there were quite a few things I didn’t have to design from scratch: the sun, the original-sized balloon, and the clouds are from my book Adventures in Mochimochi Land. Plus, a (modified) Bluebird of Crappiness stood in as Fed chairman Jerome Powell!
Big thanks to Emily Wright for hiring me for this dream project!