Martin Allais is a strong all-rounder, doing as much art and design as he does direction. Here are some examples of videos he’s directed, which we really like for their originality and mixture of techniques.
He talks a lot about experimentation and play in his work, which strongly shines through in his finished pieces. By considering his approach per project and his instinctive response, his videos are not only perfectly matched to each subject but also stand up strong alone with their own original identity.
Martin had a chat with us about how he balances all these different disciplines and the route he took to find himself doing what he does today. After having a read and a watch, why not check out his equally impressive design and illustration portfolio?
Can you tell us a little about yourself and what you do?
My name is Martin Allais, I’m a visual artist that focus on mixed media animation. I live in Barcelona but actually I’m Venezuelan, on top of that I’m french, so I’m mixed media myself as well.
About 10 years ago, I graduated from Visual Communication & Sociology in Venezuela. Since then, I’ve been jumping into many different works related to visual arts. I did print, lettering design, web design, identity, illustration, and visuals & live performances. 5 years ago, I just fell in love with animated films and that’s what I do now.
I’m happy that I did such an exploration before I started doing animation. Since my past background allowed me to experiment with techniques, media and conceptual forms, I think that made me work in a mixed way in a very natural way, which is one of the things that I believe defines my style.
Can you tell us a little more about the techniques and equipment you use in the videos you direct and animate?
I think I’ve used pretty much every technique that is out there. Stopmotion, cutout, cell animation, digital animation, 3D, programming and so on. I try to use them depending on the project and the concept that I want to explore.
I have to say that out of all this, I think my greatest loves are stop motion and cel, so lately I’ve been getting stuck there exploring and exploring since it’s endless and so exciting. I also feel that I will keep on this path since it’s very, very big, and in my case, definitely not boring ever.
Some of your work, such as the video you directed for ‘My Dry White Mess’, uses a mixture of different animation techniques. What is it that attracts you to these different forms of animation, like stop motion for example?
One of the things that I love from stop motion is that it’s so primitive, it’s like having the movement literally in your hands, it is the same with drawings, it’s pretty much like sculpting a movement, which is a beautiful way of see it, at least for myself.
As someone who also does design and illustration, do you prefer projects where you take a more hands on drawing approach or do you enjoy the other roles you take equally?
I always direct from a design approach, so it’s very rare that I delegate the artwork to another person completely. I like to work this way a lot, but sometime,s when the production is big enough, I need to collaborate with people to focus on the direction aspect, anyway I equally enjoy it.
Can you tell us about anything you’re working on at the moment or that is coming up in the near future?
Yes I’m doing a stop-motion video clip, which will come out in a couple of months, I cannot say more for now, but it’s a very nice project, I will let you know for sure when I finish
© Martin Allais, 2012