Vermeer (2016)

I was happy to work on a video for Ted Ed, the educational branch of TED Talks. It’s about the Dutch Renaissance painter Jan Vermeer, and specifically, his painting The Girl with a Pearl Earring. It was created with frame by frame animation under the camera, some paint on glass animation, some Photoshop animation, and a lot of After Effects compositing. Here is the video description:

Is she turning towards you or away from you? No one can agree. She’s the subject of Dutch Master Johannes Vermeer’s “Girl with the Pearl Earring,” a painting often referred to as the ‘Mona Lisa of the North.’ But what makes this painting so captivating? James Earle explains how this work represents the birth of a modern perspective on economics, politics, and love.

And here are a few behind the scenes shots, followed by stills:

The props were meant to echo an artist's table from Vermeer's time: oil and a pestle and mortar to make one's own paint, and a lens - a nod to Vermeer's unproven, but much suspected use of a camera obscura.

The props were meant to echo an artist’s table from Vermeer’s time: oil and a pestle and mortar to make one’s own paint, and a lens – a nod to Vermeer’s unproven, but much suspected use of a camera obscura.

Most of the painted scenes are actually traces of famous paintings. This one echoes 'The Return of the Fleet of the Dutch East India Company', by the Dutch Ludolf Backhuysen from 1677.

Throughout the video there are painted scenes that appear, and these were created via paint-on-glass animation, with both top and back lighting. Most of the painted scenes are actually traces of famous paintings. This one echoes ‘The Return of the Fleet of the Dutch East India Company’, by the Dutch Ludolf Backhuysen from 1677.

Still from Ted-Ed's 'Why is Vermeer's

Still from Ted-Ed’s ‘Why is Vermeer’s “Girl with the Pearl Earring” considered a masterpiece?’ (educator James Earle)

Still from Ted-Ed's 'Why is Vermeer's

Still from Ted-Ed’s ‘Why is Vermeer’s “Girl with the Pearl Earring” considered a masterpiece?’ (educator James Earle)

Still from Ted-Ed's 'Why is Vermeer's

Still from Ted-Ed’s ‘Why is Vermeer’s “Girl with the Pearl Earring” considered a masterpiece?’ (educator James Earle)

Still from Ted-Ed's 'Why is Vermeer's

Still from Ted-Ed’s ‘Why is Vermeer’s “Girl with the Pearl Earring” considered a masterpiece?’ (educator James Earle)

Still from Ted-Ed's 'Why is Vermeer's

Still from Ted-Ed’s ‘Why is Vermeer’s “Girl with the Pearl Earring” considered a masterpiece?’ (educator James Earle)

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