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As far as surreal, off-kilter 3D animations go, the Dutch artist and animator Michael Pelletier has probably created some of the best. Chief among these videos is parametric expression, a “study of quantified emotion” for which Pelletier created multiple cubist-esque virtual personas that made a number of hypnotic and warped expressions.

For his latest work, Coordinated Movement, Pelletier opts for a 3D animation style that is far more fluid—literally. The human-like figures float like ghosts through the frame. Like the subjects in parametric expression, they’re warped but their bodies now ripple like wind blowing across some sort of fluid. The bodies also stretch, expand, and contract like The Fantastic Four’s Reed Richards, a.k.a., Mr. Fantastic.

To create the animations, Pelletier used motion capture data from the Carnegie Mellon University Motion Capture Database. The database features motion capture data and videos from human and environmental interactions, locomotion, physical activities and sports, situations and scenarios, and test motions. So, running, walking, sports movements, handshakes, and so on.

Pelletier doesn’t reveal the exact data set and/or videos he sampled for Coordinated Movement. By the looks of it, though, it seems like Pelletier selected motion capture data on activities like jumping, gymnastics, dance, swimming and acrobatics. But it’s what he does with these data sets that is truly astonishing and strangely beautiful.

Coordinated Movement from mike pelletier on Vimeo.

Pelletier used software to make the liquid figures flow in a near seamless way. And in the areas where the motion-captured bodies appear to be stitched together, Pelletier applies some cubist glitch. Pelletier also appears to have incorporated some motion capture glitch into his animated figures movements. All of this results in the motion capture data being transformed into something else entirely—avant garde 3D animation, if you will.

The hypnotic visuals in Coordinated Movement are also helped along by Robot Repair’s beautiful percolating synth rhythms. The sounds have the quality of being simultaneously underwater, suspended in the atmosphere and inside a space habitat. This confuses the senses, making it impossible to imagine where else this could possibly be happening but in some imaginary space.

See more of Michael Pelletier’s work on his website.

Via Thecreatorsproject.

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