Some of the most fascinating video animators I’ve ever seen — Cyriak (Brighton, UK), Fernando Livschitz (Buenos Aires, Argentina) and Till Nowak (Hamburg, Germany). Using found footage and masks, they create a surreal and often disturbing view of reality.

As mentioned in the ‘Heroes of Animation film’, Cyriak sees this style as a natural evolution of the Terry Gilliam school — taking photographic elements and moving them in unexpected ways. I would go further and in that it takes Russian Constructivist fine-art photomontage to a natural conclusion.

We are so used to amateur camcorder and mobile films these days that this approach seems to transcend animation — and we are drawn into their world.

We are so used to amateur camcorder and mobile video these days that this approach seems to even transcend animation — and we are drawn into their world. So much so that The Institute for Centrifugal Research seems to be (remotely) plausible.

And here’s how it’s done.

This profile of Cyriak includes a history of his work, and a demonstration of his process. This behind-the-scenes video from The Centrifuge Brain Project shows the CGI overlaid over the source footage, and this After Effects tutorial explains the basics, using a locked-off camera (then you can add natural camera movement afterwards).