As much as I appreciate those augmented-reality prints that “come alive” when viewed through a special app on your phone, I’m always left thinking, “If you already have the video content, why do you need the print piece in the first place?” Drew Tetz must’ve thought the same thing because the graphic designer has resurrected a 19th century technology for the modern age that puts what you print front and center, as we can see in these intriguing animated business cards and postcards he’s created.
To watch any of his designs come to life, simply place a animated business card on a turntable under a bright light, set it to 78 RPM, switch it on, and view the piece through your smartphone camera. Instantly the design leaps to life: dachshunds dance, “love” melts, scissors snip and more! These pieces have literally become Drew’s calling cards, and suggest intriguing possibilities for grabbing the attention of those clients who have “seen it all.”
The process used here is the same one behind a pre-cinema technology invented in 1832 called the phenakistoscope, which tricks your eyes by using the camera’s frame rate to separate the layers of a spinning disk into individual frames. Drew’s pieces cleverly take advantage of the smartphone’s own frame rate and the spinning of a turntable to duplicate that experience.
All this required was for him to place illustrations, each slightly different, into 24 cells on a polar grid. Of course “all” in this case is a lot of work. We can only imagine the trial-and-error process he went through before he perfected his craft. (You can discover how to adapt this technology for your own designs here.)
For printing, he “used MOO.com & their ‘original’ option,” he explains. “Nothing fancy, I know, but I was very happy with their work. I don’t know all the details about their process, but it was a full-color print with a matte finish on 350 gsm /16 pt. paper. I ordered 100 rectangle cards & 50 square cards. There were 3 animations recolored into 9 total designs.”
While we normally reserve our kudos for premium papers and unique finishing techniques, it’s hard not to get excited by designs that melt our love and get our dachshunds dancing!