Bob Sabiston 

(*1967) is an American film art director, computer programmer, and creator of the Rotoshop software program for computer animation.

Sabiston began developing software as a graduate researcher in the MIT Media Lab from 1986 to 1991. While at MIT, and also after moving to Austin, Texas, in 1993, Sabiston used his 2D/3D software to create several short films, including God's Little Monkey (1994), Beat Dedication (1988), and Grinning Evil Death (1990). Grinning Evil Death was widely seen on the first episode of MTV's Liquid Television show. God's Little Monkey won the Prix Ars Electronica Golden Nica award for 1994.


In 1997, he developed his interpolating rotoscope program, Rotoshop, for an animation contest sponsored by MTV. The software was used to produce a series of 25 30-second interstitials in New York, collectively entitled Project Incognito. He moved back to Austin in 1998 and with the help of local artists made the short film RoadHead. This was followed in 1999 by short Snack and Drink, which won several film festival awards and resides in the MOMA video collection. The shorts collection Figures of Speech followed in late 1999, for PBS. In 2000, Sabiston hired thirty graphic artists in the Austin area to help make Richard Linklater's groundbreaking film Waking Life.


After Waking Life Sabiston spent several years making more rotoscoped short films, including Yard, Earthlink Sucks, Grasshopper. He directed a series of shorts for the PBS show Life360. In 2003 he directed a short segment for the Lars von Trier film The Five Obstructions. Both Grasshopper and The Five Obstructions were shown at the Sundance Film Festival in 2004.


In 2004 Sabiston was hired as Head of Animation for Richard Linklater's A Scanner Darkly. He improved the software substantially for the film, which represents a big leap in the capabilities of the software. Since 2005 he has also directed the Talk to Chuck campaign of animated advertisements for Charles Schwab.


Sabiston developed Rotoshop as a means to make rotoscoping easier for artists by automating the interpolation of hand-drawn shapes and lines over video. The software is proprietary and currently not available for use outside of Sabiston's production company, Flat Black Films.


Sabiston is also the creator of Inchworm, a paint and animation program planned for release on the Nintendo DS.


Source: Wikipedia



Bob Sabiston, software


Computer Music Journal: Visual Music (2005) - The articles in this issue are all devoted to the topic of Visual Music: audiovisual creations in which the artist strives to endow the video component with formal and abstract qualities that mimic those of musical composition. (Computer Music Journal)

Digital Harmony (1980): On the Complementarity of Music and Visual Art – John Whitney, Sr. wanted to create a dialog between "the voices of light and tone." All of his early experiments in film and the development of sound techniques lead toward this end. He felt that music was an integral part of the visual experience; the combination had a long history in man's primitive development and was part of the essence of life. His theories On the complementarity of Music and Visual Art were explained in his book, Digital Harmony, published by McGraw-Hill in 1980. (Paradise 2012)



Brian O'Reilly is the creator of various works for moving images, electronic/noise music, mixed media collage, installation, and is a contrabassist, focusing on the integration of electronic treatments and extended playing techniques. (Brian O'Reilly on Vimeo)

Karl Kliem (*1969) studied at the well-known Hochschule für Gestaltung (University of Art and Design) in Offenbach. He developed real-time audio and visual systems and has designed the most diverse projects in the fields of multi-media, web design, and TV design, as well as music and audio production for films and interactive installations. Karl Kliem is a founding member of Involving-Systems (1994) and MESO (1997). (Dienststelle)

META/DATA: A Digital Poetics (2007) by pioneering digital artist Mark Amerika mixes (and remixes) personal memoir, net art theory, fictional narrative, satirical reportage, scholarly history, and network-infused language art. META/DATA is a playful, improvisatory, multitrack digital sampling of Amerika's writing from 1993 to 2005 that tells the early history of a net art world gone wild while simultaneously constructing a parallel poetics of net art that complements Amerika's own artistic practice. (The MIT Press)

Lamp Shade (2007) by David Muth visually explores rhythmic patterns and their underlying harmonic shifts through abstract minimalism. Specially written software generated the imagery. Music by Alvin Lucier. (David Muth)

Visual Sound Design (2010) by Reza Ali is a little app he made to help him understand microsounds, oscillators, timing, frequency, low frequency oscillators, polymorphism, sequencing, filtering, time domain effects, such as reverb, chorusing, etc, and distortion effects, such as clipping and more... in real-time in a visual manner, which is how he learns best. (Reza Ali on Vimeo)