Christmas Decorations of the Future: Part 1 (of 3)

Illustrator Margot Bowman Imagines the Ornaments of Tomorrow in a Three-Part Celebration of Christmas 2062

Fast-forwarding to a dystopian future where time is precious, silence is rare and true affection a luxury, illustrator Margot Bowman animates the extroverted, energetic Christmas decorations that she imagines will join us for the holidays several decades from now. At just 23 years old, Bowman counts fashion and beauty brands such as Kiehl’s, Alexander McQueen and Rupert Sanderson as clients and has also collaborated with the British Fashion Council as Creative Director of The Estethica Review, a magazine released during London Fashion Week to promote ethical fashion and design. In this first installment of a three-part, animated series, we are introduced to the ‘Huggeration’, an outgoing bauble that senses when people in the room feel lonely, and responds with TLC. We also meet the well-intentioned ‘Shshhhhhhh’, which collects negative noise and energy that may threaten to ruin Christmas. Working with animator Andy Baker, Bowman enlisted the musical talents of songwriter Kai Fish to create a space-age soundtrack for the festive films.

Check back tomorrow for Part Two, and a behind-the-scenes look at Bowman's animated magic. 

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Conversations (1)

  • lauras
    This is amazing. Brava. Good stuff Lauras
    • Posted By lauras
    • December 20, 2012 at 10:06AM
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    All I Want For Christmas...

    Warm Up for the Festive Season with a Series of Personalized Cards from Our Contributors

    Currently filming the next Hunger Games film on location in Hawaii, actor Jena Malone reveals a yuletide penchant for Tuaca Vanilla Citrus Liqueur, while LA-based Band of Outsiders designer Scott Sternberg reflects on a childhood revelation courtesy of one Rabbi Goldstein, and Rodarte’s Kate and Laura Mulleavy dream of snow in NOWNESS’ holiday card extravaganza. We asked a cast of contributors—including jewelry creator Waris Ahluwalia, British fashion legend Alice Temperley, graffiti artist and nightlife impresario Andre Saraiva, illustrator and filmmaker Quentin Jones, Thai-American designer Thakoon Panichgul, visual polymath Margot Bowman, music video director Philip Andelman and artist José Parlá—to share the special family traditions and diverse emotional states that define their personal versions of the festive season. Here we present a batch of good tidings to wish our readers a very happy holidays. 

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    Through a Glass Brightly

    Director William Snieg Conjures an Underwater Ballet with Crystal and Clouds

    Submerged glasses and decanters by fine crystalware makers Lobmeyr, Baccarat and Saint Louis are animated with billows of color in this short by Parisian art director William Snieg. Collaborating with set designer Marcel van Doorn—who devised the formula for the multihued injections—and interior stylist and regular Wallpaper* contributor Leila Latchin, Snieg aimed to capture the elegant movements of the mixed-liquid clouds as if a magical ballet. “I wanted to transcribe the grace of these figures, that look sometimes like fine silk, sometimes like a smoky mist, against a pure base—crystal,” explains Snieg, who art directs campaigns and short films for Louis Vuitton and Dior. In selecting the crystal, Latchin sourced from companies whose centuries-long histories are filled with stories. “Lobmeyr, Baccarat and Saint Louis have all attracted prestigious clients requesting extraordinary commissions,” she explains. “Each boasts an incredible archive and masterful artisans whose skill transforms molten crystal into these exquisite pieces.” 


    Featured crystalware

    Lobmeyr drinking set no. 240
    This very thin crystal, blown to a thickness of 0.7 to 1.1mm, is referred to as “muslin glass,” after the finely woven fabric. It looks very delicate but is remarkably resilient due to its elasticity and construction.

    Baccarat’s Harcourt decanter and glasses
    Designed in 1841 (making it the oldest set in the collection), the flat facet cut magnifies the light in the crystal.

    Saint Louis Bartholdi decanter
    Founded in the 16th century and named after King Louis XV, Saint Louis is the oldest of the three companies. The decanter is engraved with many facets decorated with Venetian cuts.

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    Secret Science
    Marcel Van Doorn’s undisclosed formula mixes a white liquid base (with a greater density than water) with powerful dyes to create a glittering color and graceful movement. 

    A glass tank was filled with water and the crystalware carefully submerged and composed. Various techniques introduced the dyes into the tank—after that it was up to the liquids to work their magic.

    One tank collapsed during shooting as the water pressure on its wall was too great, and a second also finished in the trash. 

    Over 600 liters of water were used.

    Cloud colors
    Klein blue; byzantium purple; vermillion; lemon yellow; fuschia.

    The Red Epic, a video camera that shoots close-up details at 240 frames per second in 2,000 pixel resolution. The lens was a Zeiss Master Prime (one of cinema’s best). 

    Acceleration/deceleration from 1,000% up to 2,000%. Color calibration executed with DaVinci Resolve.

    Shoot duration
    Nine hours.


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