Category: AMV

Visions of Disaster (Shabu Showdown 2023 Week 1)

The theme for the first round of Shabu Showdown 2023 was Owl House Covens - editors had a week to create a video illustrating one of the covens from the show Owl House. The only one that sparked an idea quickly for me was the Oracle coven, which dealt with fortune-telling, clairvoyance, divination, etc. 

I had recently been thinking about Sailor Moon, and remembered Rei (Sailor Mars) and her divinations using the sacred fire in her home temple, but it took me longer than I expected to find the footage I needed. I had forgotten how much was in the Doom Tree arc and had been looking in the S season instead. I interspersed the Sailor Moon footage with footage from a bunch of other series and movies that showed the aftermath of major natural disasters to indicate what she was seeing visions of.

For audio, I went back to my familiar well of production music and Two Steps From Hell, which worked for the video, but I decided after this round that I wouldn't use TSFH for the rest of the event, wanting to break out of that familiar rut.

Reactions to it were pretty positive, and I'm pretty happy with the result.

Video - Sailor Moon (original and R), Tokyo Magnitude 8.0, Your Name, Weathering With You, Princess Mononoke, Millennium Actress, The Wind Rises, Ponyo
Audio - Two Steps From Hell - Mercy in Darkness
Completed November 2023 Link
YouTube Link

Hypotrochoids and Epitrochoids

I was worried that I wouldn't finish Trí Scéal in time for the AWA Accolades deadline, so I had this idea hanging around in my head as a backup idea that I could put together very quickly just in case. When I actually finished with about a day to go to the deadline, I decided to try and get it done as a second entry.

I first heard Jay Foreman perform one verse of the song in a YouTube video (an episode of The Park Bench with Matt Gray where Jay subbed in for Tom Scott), and was what I intended to use before I had bought copies of Jay's album, which included a version with four verses. I thought that was probably a bit much, and cut it down to just the first and last verses for the video.

For video, I just ripped every 16:9 BluRay in my collection I could think of that might include someone writing, and scrubbed through looking for workable scenes. I decided early on that I'd only use one shot from each source, so I had to come up with quite a few. I actually spent far longer just waiting for discs to rip than I did actually assembling the video.

It wasn't until I was putting clips on the timeline that I noticed some of the writing was very frantic, and decided on the fly to have the franticness build as the video went on, which made the final video far better than my original plan of just throwing everything on the timeline and hoping it flowed.

The title is a cheap math joke, because it's the mathematical names for the two shapes that a Spirograph draws - hypotrochoids if the moving wheel is rolling around the inside the stationary wheel, epitrochoids if the moving wheel is rolling around the outside of the stationary one.

It got a good reaction from the other competitors, and was nominated as a finalist in the Trailer/Parody category (because several people thought it was from an actual commercial for Spirograph).

Video - Emma: A Victorian Romance, My Love Story!, Anthem of the Heart, Spy x Family, A Silent Voice, Garden of Words, I Want to Eat Your Pancreas, The Girl Who Leapt Through Time, Puella Magi Madoka Magica, Monthly Girls Nozaki-kun, The Wind Rises, Your Name, Weathering With You, Clannad, Gourmet Girl Graffiti, Chobits, Porco Rosso, Wolf Children, Miss Kobayashi's Dragon Maid, Penguin Highway, From Up on Poppy Hill, She The Ultimate Weapon, Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya, K-on!, Royal Space Force Honneamise, Wotakoi, Summer Wars, Little Witch Academia
Audio - Jay Foreman - Spirograph
Completed September 2023 Link
YouTube Link

Never Too Late

Back in 2014, I was driving through very rural northern Vermont late one evening for work, and wanted to follow the Bruins-Canadiens playoff game that was happening that same night. The only station I could find was a French-language station out of Montreal, and after the game, they went back to their usual music format. "Jamais Trop Tard," a very new release at the time, was the first song they played, and it caught my attention very strongly. I managed to use Shazam to find the actual song title, and spent the next eight years looking for a series to use for it.

A friend loaned me a copy of Emma to watch as a possible series to use after I asked for suggestions, and it fit better than I expected.

I specifically wanted to send this video to Canadian conventions, and in particular Otakuthon in Montreal, though sadly it didn't make the finals at any of the ones I sent it to. I did get several compliments from people who did see it and fans of Emma, though.

Video - Emma: A Victorian Romance
Audio - Marie-Mai feat. Jonas - Jamais Trop Tard
Completed July 2023 Link
YouTube Link

Anime Boston 2023 Contest Opening

I was running very behind on a lot of things related to the AMV Contest in 2023, so when I needed to make an opening for the year's theme of "Idols," I just reached for the first thing that came to mind: the very easy dance sequences from Pride of Orange and one of the songs from the soundtracks included with the Blu-Rays. Very simple and basic, but it worked to get the info I needed to convey out to the audience.

With future years not having a specific con-wide theme, I'm not sure what I'll be doing for openings in the future, but I'll definitely need to start planning further in advance, so I'm not rushing a slapped-together opening like this again.

Anime - Pride of Orange
Music - Smile Princess - ハレ、のちドリーミングっ!○
Completed April 2023

YouTube Link

Into Infinity (Project OrgEditor 2022 Round 6)

After the previous week, I was planning to use a source I knew, but when the theme "Extraordinary Voyages" got announced, and specifically referenced Jules Verne in the challenge, my mind immediately went to another show I owned but hadn't watched yet, Nadia: The Secret of Blue Water. Thankfully, it was only 39 episodes to scrub instead of close to 200, but it still took a decent amount of time. I went back to the Two Steps From Hell well yet again (third time in six rounds) for the audio, because "Beyond the Horizon" fit the tone of epic exploration so well.

Overall, a solid effort that scored fairly well, and it definitely moved Nadia up my backlog to-watch list, so I can see the context of some of those wacky scenes I found while scrubbing.

Anime - Nadia: The Secret of Blue Water
Music - Two Steps From Hell - Beyond the Horizon
Completed December 2022 Link
YouTube Link

Life’s Natural 1’s (Project OrgEditor 2022 Round 5)

Round 5's theme for Project OrgEditor 2022 was "Roll For Initiative" and asked for videos demonstrating one of the Dungeons & Dragons character statistics. I decided that Luck would be my best bet, and decided to do a character profile of one of the unluckiest characters in anime, Ryouga Hibiki from Ranma ½.

This turned out to be a bit of a dumb move on my part, since although I'm familiar with the series, it's mostly been through the manga, and I haven't seen most of the TV series. Scrubbing 167 TV series episodes, 11 OVAs, and 3 movies for scenes of a secondary character in less than a week was definitely not the smartest move I've ever made.

For the song, while Hee Haw was a bit before my time, but my mother had frequently sung the "Gloom, Despair, and Agony On Me" song it made popular when I was young, so that musical phrase has stuck in my head for many years. I found a few different covers of it, and settled on the version by Starlings, TN to use.

The actual editing was pretty rushed because of how long scrubbing all the footage took, but overall, I like the result.

Anime - Ranma ½
Music - Starlings, TN - Gloom, Despair, and Agony on Me
Completed December 2022 Link
YouTube Link

Lineage of Ancient Power (Project OrgEditor 2022 Round 4)

The theme for Project OrgEditor 2022's Round 4 was "Who's that POEkémon?," and called for a video exemplifying one of the standard Pokemon types. I only had two days to edit this round, as I was travelling internationally for most of the week and only got back on the Thursday before the Sunday deadline.

I took what I felt would be the easiest type, Dragon, and went back to the well of short-duration production music in Two Steps From Hell's "Sky Titans" for the audio, and just threw together as many dragons as I could find in my collection.

For such an insane rush job, it worked surprisingly well and got a pretty good score from the judges.

Anime - Familiar of Zero, Miss Kobayashi's Dragon Maid, Pokemon: Black & White, Record of Lodoss War, Slayers, Spirited Away
Music - Two Steps From Hell - Sky Titans
Completed December 2022 Link
YouTube Link

High School Best Friends (Project OrgEditor 2022 Round 3)

Round 3's theme for Project OrgEditor 2022 was "All Grown Up" and asked us to create videos exploring growing up or coming of age.

I had watched The Muppets Take Manhattan the week before this round, and "Saying Goodbye" was stuck in my head at the time. The original Muppets version didn't quite work for the tone I was going for, but searching YouTube found me johnny0104's excellent cover of it.

My original plan was to use as many graduation sequences as I could, but as I started searching, I kept coming back to Azumanga and the relationship between Chiyo and Sasaki. Of the main cast, they always struck me as the pair that would stay in contact even after life took them in different directions.

I originally wanted to use the whole song, but ended up cutting it down due to lack of footage and time. I might revisit the idea again someday, but not soon.

Anime - Azumanga Daioh
Music - johnnyj0104 - Saying Goodbye (from The Muppets Take Manhattan)
Completed November 2022 Link
YouTube Link

To Whom the Forests Speak (Project OrgEditor 2022 Round 2)

The theme for Round 2 of Project OrgEditor 2022 was "Drawn Together" and required using a variety of types of source material (animated, CGI, live action, video games, manga/comics, etc.). I generally work best with finding a song first, so I went digging through my music collection for inspiration, eventually settling on Two Steps From Hell's "Elven Princess." The song title and lyrics in Tolkien's Elvish immediately suggested a collection of classical fantasy elves.

I deliberately structured the order to go from anime to CGI animation to live action and back as an attempt at symmetry, though I didn't have a good place to use How Not to Summon a Demon Lord in the front half, and only included it in the back half.

Overall, this is one of the videos I liked making best from this year's POE event, and came together better than I expected.

Video - Secret of Kells, Record of Lodoss War OVA, The Dragon Prince, Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity, Lord of the Rings movie trilogy, How Not to Summon a Demon Lord
Audio - Two Steps From Hell - Elven Princess Link
YouTube Link

Having the Whip Hand (Project OrgEditor 2022 Round 1)

The theme for Round 1 of Project OrgEditor 2022 was "Villains," which proved a surprisingly difficult theme to find a good source for. Digging through my shelves, I discovered that while it's a very large collection, I watch very few things that have outright villains - lots of antagonists and opponents, but not many true villains. I ended up settling on the first Nanoha movie more out of default than anything else. For the song, I'd been on a big Battle Beast kick at the time, and pulled out one of the songs I'd been listening to a lot.

The title comes from the idiom meaning having the dominant position or control over a group, which I'd seen used several times in a book a few weeks earlier, and the infamous abuse scene with Presea and Fate.

This made an okay pairing, but was hamstrung a bit by the lack of footage - I kept remembering scenes from the TV series that weren't in the movie and having to change tactics every time that happened.

Anime - Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha The Movie 1st
Music - Battle Beast - Master of Illusion
Completed November 2022 Link
YouTube Link