Old-school art meets modern day funding in Japan



This is part of our Crowdfunding in Japan series (RSS). Services like KickStarter have become a global phenomenon with the power to let creative individuals take their ideas to new heights. It’s happening here in Japan too, most notably on Campfire, the country’s answer to Kickstarter.

From Sukimaki Animation, While the Crow Weeps is a short animation using multiplane cameras, implementing a technique often used in the past to create 3D effects in traditional cell animation. In While the Crow Weeps this method was used to capture each individually hand-drawn frame.

The subject of the art series is a group of crows, and in addition to the unique camera technique, it also uses Japanese paper (washi), black India Ink and mineral pigments as painting materials. By choosing these unusual, older methods, the project aims to expand the expressiveness of the artwork.

Using this multiplane camera technique in production is very rare in the age of personal computers. The technique gives the artwork a distinct atmosphere and warmth that cannot be expressed with digital processing.

The Campfire campaign aimed to raise JPY 300,000 (about $3,300) to fund production costs. That goal was reached successfully on December 13, 2012, and the project has since stopped seeking additional patrons. The artwork is scheduled to be completed by this spring.

For an idea of how this artwork looks, you can see the video clip below.