Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Fleischer Setback Process

YouTube user, ‘matbergman’, has taken the time to cut together scenes with the setback process used by the Max Fleischer studio. He has a good description of it and gives us the original name here: The rotograph, patent #2054414, was invented by animator Max Fleischer in 1936. Essentially an enormous, revolving, circular miniature set built in forced perspective, it enabled a fantastic sense of depth and parallax in cartoons produced by the Fleischer Studio in the 1930's.

I’ve included the video and some stills showing Max looking through a camera and setback scene, and a line art diagram that kind of explains the process yet again. These really give a striking effect and I’ve often wonder why they weren’t used on Fleischer’s feature works like Gulliver’s Travels and Mr. Bug Goes to Town?

 UPDATE: Here is a great scene form a Popeye cartoon. Watch the cages as they turn showing all sides.

Popeye 3D background
Scenes with 3D models for backgrounds like these would completely baffle me as a kid.
Posted by Joel Brinkerhoff on Friday, December 18, 2009


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