“we were slaves in Egypt”

…but we probably didn’t look this hot:

Hebrew7acrossGIF

JewessesAcrossGIF
Character designs for male and female Hebrew slaves for Seder-Masochism. Yes I grossly exaggerate contrasting male and female traits like shoulders, hips and waists. It’s a cartoon. These guys are on a 27-frame cycle because that’s the closest beat to the song I’m using.

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Passover Satyr

PassoverSatyr_white

When I told a (gentile) friend I was making a movie about the Seder, she thought I said “satyr.” The idea cracked me up, but I didn’t illustrate it because who needs more associations of Jews with horns and cloven hooves? Until now. Here is the Passover Satyr.

I was worried this was in questionable taste. Too soon? But after posting this illustration on Facebook, so many people asked for a T-shirt that I set one up for pre-orders here.

teespring1You have until November 3 to order one.

 

Death of the Firstborn Egyptians


The most recently-completed scene from my feature-in-progress Seder-Masochism.

written, directed, designed, animated, produced, etc. by Nina Paley
music from “Spider Suite” by The Duke of Uke and His Novelty Orchestra
sound effects by Greg Sextro

DONATE HERE: questioncopyright.org/sedermasochism

Based on Exodus 12:
21 Then Moses called for all the elders of Israel, and said unto them, Draw out and take you a lamb according to your families, and kill the passover.
22 And ye shall take a bunch of hyssop, and dip it in the blood that is in the bason, and strike the lintel and the two side posts with the blood that is in the bason; and none of you shall go out at the door of his house until the morning.
23 For the Lord will pass through to smite the Egyptians; and when he seeth the blood upon the lintel, and on the two side posts, the Lord will pass over the door, and will not suffer the destroyer to come in unto your houses to smite you.
24 And ye shall observe this thing for an ordinance to thee and to thy sons for ever.
25 And it shall come to pass, when ye be come to the land which the Lord will give you, according as he hath promised, that ye shall keep this service.
26 And it shall come to pass, when your children shall say unto you, What mean ye by this service?
27 That ye shall say, It is the sacrifice of the Lord’s passover, who passed over the houses of the children of Israel in Egypt, when he smote the Egyptians, and delivered our houses. And the people bowed the head and worshipped.
28 And the children of Israel went away, and did as the Lord had commanded Moses and Aaron, so did they.
29 And it came to pass, that at midnight the Lord smote all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh that sat on his throne unto the firstborn of the captive that was in the dungeon; and all the firstborn of cattle.
30 And Pharaoh rose up in the night, he, and all his servants, and all the Egyptians; and there was a great cry in Egypt; for there was not a house where there was not one dead.

*****

LYRICS by David King, aka Duke of Uke:

DEATH: Falling stars you wished upon
are cinders now and now they’re gone
their residue festoons my fetid field.
Unfeeling husks of lovers past
the shells are all that ever last
I’ve taken everything that they concealed.
Whoever told you life was fair?
Look around you, everywhere
the cruelty of nature is displayed!
Why the scorn?
Why the surprise?
Everything that’s born must die
and it isn’t I who made the world that way.

What wicked little twist of fate
placed you her upon my plate
Here, where no one hears your cries?
Where was your god to steer you through
Perhaps your god’s forsaken you
Otherwise why lead you here to die?

BA (spirit of the dead): I, I know the way how
I’ll melt away now
I know the way.
I’m feeling bliss now
Dissolved to mist how
strangely I go
away
Now I finally know

DEATH: It’s merely moments now,
moments now until
your feeble flesh bends to my will
and it will
so rest your weary head.
There’ll be no pain,
no pain at all
as everything you are dissolves
Your fate resolved
upon my silky thread.

BA: I, I know the way how
I’ll melt away now
I know the way.
I’m feeling bliss now
Dissolved to mist how
strangely I go
away
Now I finally know
(repeat)

Burning Bush redux

Bush7loop

Hopefully an improvement on my previous Burning Bush design which I made a few years ago. The new design can do this:

Bush7loop2

Coming Soon

06Melt_2I just finished animating the “Death of the Firstborn Egyptians” (Exodus 12) scene for Seder-Masochism. It clocks in at 7 minutes 6 seconds. As soon as it gets some extra sound effects I’ll release it online, coinciding with a fundraising drive for the movie. Meanwhile here are some stills.

06Melt_1

08

09

10.2

 

Leviathan/Apep in the sea

ApepBWenlarging

I seem to have created something that looks great as an endlessly looping gif, but is hard to fit into the movie I created it for. I’m still trying to fit it in without overwhelming any scene it appears in.

ba ba black background

02Melt

Egyptian firstborn mummy

03Melt

First flight of the ba

04Melt

The ba passes Ammit and Anubis weighing the heart

More “Death of the Firstborn Egyptians” scenes for Seder-Masochism. I’m using a plain black background in these scenes to suggest the dead are “inside” Death, but the Egyptian art I’m basing it on have light backgrounds, so it’s a bit of a stretch.

 

How to make a Leviathan in Macromedia Flash 8

People have been asking how I made this, so I took some screen shots:

1. Basic segment shape

1. Basic segment shape

Continue reading How to make a Leviathan in Macromedia Flash 8

Leviathan Redux

Leviathan_Snake68_2

I’m adapting the Leviathan I designed a few years ago into an Apep for the “Death of the Firstborn Egyptians” scene of Seder-Masochism. It’ll look more Egyptian later, but right now I’m just happy with the movement, which I re-timed to go with the music. It has a beat every 17 frames, kind of a pain to adjust but I’m pleased with the rhythm.

Uraeus Disc

Egypt Sun Ra Wadjet

Death cycle

DeathKillCycle

I’m currently working on the “Death of the Firstborn Egyptians” chapter of Seder-Masochism. The little move above happens only once in the film, but I wanted to see it over and over, hence the gif.

09.6.2

Chad Gadya embroidermation progress

embroidermation

A wee taste of the progress Theo and I are making on our “Chad Gadya” embroidermation project.

goat

Frames of the animation are stitched in groups of 6, arranged in a circle on matzo covers. We currently have 516 frames on 86 matzo covers, which I painstakingly finished by hand with multiple fabric layers and labels and everything.

Matzo covers

We hired Theo’s daughter, Emma, to help. Here she is ironing away while I adjust a lining.

NinaEmmaMatzoCovers

Here I am topstitching one of the 86 covers on a treadle sewing machine.

NinaHemsCover

We have a lot of additional photography, stitchcoding and stitching to do, but we are making progress. When the film is done the matzo covers will be for sale.

This Land Is Mine is yours

Due to horrific recent events, This Land Is Mine has gone viral again.

Here’s a reminder that you don’t need permission to copy, share, broadcast, post, embed, subtitle, etc. Copying is an act of love, please copy and share. Yes means yes.

copying is an act of love, please copy and shareAs for the music, it is Fair UseThis Land Is Mine is a PARODY of “The Exodus Song.” That music was sort of the soundtrack of American zionism in the 1960’s and 70’s. It was supposed to express Jewish entitlement to Israel. By putting the song in the mouth of every warring party, I’m critiquing the original song.

 

Egyptian Falcon

falcon_fast1

Another thing for Seder-Masochism.

Death Makes a Holiday

Death of Firstborn Egyptians

I’m currently animating the Death of the Firstborn Egyptians (Exodus 11:1-12:36) for Seder-Masochism. This is the miracle that started Passover! Hooray! I’m being sarcastic!