Saturday, December 15, 2007
CGNetworks Feature::Tomek Baginski Interview (Excerpt)
By Paul Hellard
Credited as the name behind ‘The Cathedral', Tomek Baginski is now on the verge of releasing the new Platige short film ‘Fallen Art', a very different, very black comedy.
Tomek Baginski has been working at Platige for seven years now, but he was only ten when he realized that making computer animation was the cheapest way of making films. “I wanted to make films for as long as I can remember so the choice was natural”, says Baginski. “I started with an Amiga computer. I've gone through many different programs and platforms and then finally landed with 3D.” Baginski's first 3D student film ‘Rain' was good enough to land him a job in Platige Image and straight after the appointment, he quit college where he was studying architecture. “I didn't really like architecture,” Baginski muses, “but in Poland studying something was the only way to avoid the army.”
While working on ‘The Cathedral', Baginski was thinking about film ideas he'd like to produce afterwards. A folder slowly filled with photos, stories and sketches so he wouldn't forget them. He couldn't work on them but he could save them for later. “I chose ‘Fallen Art' because it was very different to Cathedral and I was sure that I had to make a different film to avoid comparisons. ‘The Cathedral' was quite successful and making a short with a similar kind of mood could have been a dangerous trap. I decided to go the other way.”
The message behind ‘Fallen Art' changed during production. At the beginning Baginski wanted to make just a funny film about the army, but many things happened in the world while the crew was fine-tuning the storyboards. The army topic has became much more stark, and much more serious.
“Consequently, we decided to make the story darker than in the beginning”, says Baginski. “It wasn't only my idea. The music my brother found was much more insane than I've expected. The character design done by the very talented young painter, Rafal Wojtunik was also much more wicked that I though it would be. Of course it is still a comedy, but it is very dark comedy.”
Very rough sketches and some written characteristics were handed to Wojtunik and that was all. Baginski admits he wasn't really paying any attention to the design process and the characters and set design have become crazier than he expected. Wojtunik based his drawings on the paintings of the Polish painter Jerzy Duda-Gracz, but most of the ideas were born inside his head. “When I saw the first designs I was quite surprised”, says Baginski, “but at the same time I was really impressed. Giving the designing part to Wojtunik was one of the best decisions I've made during the project.”