Maybe I’m doing it wrong.

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Consumerist posted this beautifully animated short visualizing the credit crisis.


The Crisis of Credit Visualized from Jonathan Jarvis on Vimeo.

Incidentally, I sure hope I don’t find out how insanely popular this video game reviewer is.

Emergency 411 is on Crackle’s wet paint

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Two episodes of Emergency 411, “Finding Parking” and “Having a Baby” are finalists in Crackle’s Wet Paint animation contest, and with my cartoons garnering somewhere between 15,000 and 4 views, my chances are anybody’s guess. Both have been featured items, even though they aren’t the most-watched nor the highest rated videos. But you can still change that! I am proud to have two videos in the contest out of 70 entrants, and at least it means better odds than the chances of the CERN supercollider destroying the world.

Speaking of CERN — and the earth suddenly becoming a ball of evaporating strangelets — I think I may throw a party as a last hurrah before the imminent destruction of the world by Swiss high-energy particle physicists — or to celebrate our continued existence as fairly mundane, non-black hole matter.

I don’t know what I would enjoy more, my continued existence or winning an animation contest. I’ll get back to you on that.

Everyone’s a winner, we’re making that fame

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I’m pleased to announce that my latest Emergency 411: How-To How-To was a winner in Mobifest’s MobiBio contest! What could describe me better than a minute cartoon about wasting time and sitting on my ass? Myself and some of my fellow esteemed animators and filmmakers have all won one thing or another, so I guess what I’m saying is I’m just keeping my head above water.

In case you need a refresher:

E411 drops a bomb on Channel Frederator

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Once again, Channel Frederator‘s got the inside track on more Emergency 411, so check it out — but be sure to get those tax returns in first!

I haven’t started mine yet. Is that bad?

Also, watch for William Hohauser’s Silly Gags. It’s like the WarioWare of animation.

(Speaking of timeliness… next time I’ll try to give updates on time, and not a month after my cartoons have gone up. Oh, and Happy St. Patrick’s Day!)

Taking the 411 to Channel Frederator!

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I’m pretty excited that FIVE of my Emergency 411 episodes have been featured on popular animation blog Channel Frederator. Check it out:

That Tim Heiderich has some hilarious observations. His 411 shorts are simple, graphic, and very funny.

After missing him at Mobifest Toronto, I was delighted to meet the man behind Channel Frederator, Fred Seibert, at Nickelodeon in Burbank. He shared some great insights into how one fits into the entertainment industry and told me that the only way to get ahead in Hollywood was to…

Wait, why am I telling YOU?

Check out my work as well as an unbelievable amount of amazing animation updated more-than-weekly at Channel Frederator.

Crackle finds the 411 on parking

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The Emergency 411 keeps showing up in more places! This time, it’s part of Crackle’s Wet Paint contest, featured alongside many fine (and some familiar) animated shorts currently gracing the web. If you’ve been stuck circling the block and haven’t gotten a chance, check out Emergency 411: Finding Parking — it’s on Crackle right now!

From Crackle: Emergency 411 Finding Parking

And while you’re there, the shouting talking half of Penn & Teller has something to say on Penn Says, with one of my favorites being his thoughts on fame. And just because I’m linking to Penn doesn’t mean I’m trying to convert you into an internet libertarian.

Toronto karaoke DJs: the worst people in the world?

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MobiFestI had a great time in Toronto at this year’s Mobifest. Toronto’s a wonderful city and I would definitely go back. Sorry it took me roughly three weeks to say that. I met some great people, made some connections and got to see some fun videos and animation, but more than that, I learned one important thing: that guy running karaoke at the Holiday Inn was a huge asshole.

I enjoyed the Mobifest show itself (up until the awards part anyway) and I could see in each short what made it stand out to the judges. And it’s true, you do learn a bit about what works and what doesn’t from watching your video with an audience… like sometimes you can be too clever for your own good. I’m not saying that to sound arrogant, I mean that trying too hard to reinvent a tired story, or abstracting something to the point of obscurity, or just having too many things going on at once, you may just trip over your own feet. From that, here are a few things I learned about producing mobile content:

  1. Be iconic. Have a solid, easily-recognizable style, color palette, design.
  2. Don’t rely too heavily on audio; cellphones aren’t known for their sound quality. They’re known for having tiny, tinny speakers.
  3. You’re on a small screen, so don’t rely on a lot of subtle detail. A whole joke can be lost by a compression artifact or dropped frame.
  4. Don’t rush every joke — there’s this thing called ‘pacing’; you don’t have to write like your viewers have ADD.
  5. That guy running karaoke at the Holiday Inn can go suck a dick.

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Christina Aguilera doesn’t wear panties

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At least that was the news over at What Would Tyler Durden Do?.

Christina’s baby-makerAnd you know what? This just makes my latest Emergency 411: Finding Parking that much more topical. Sure, it’s ostensibly about parking or something, but the eagle-eyed viewer may notice a reference to a certain starlet with a pathological need to let her south mouth breathe. At the time it was a joke about looking up Britney Spears’ skirt, or Lindsey Lohan’s or some chick named Paris Hilton (hadn’t heard of her), but now we can thankfully throw Christina into the mix.

Ah, thank heaven for easy celebri-vag gags.

And speaking of how classy my integrity is, when giving an interview for last week’s Mobifest Toronto, I got to talk about girls who don’t wear panties when I was interviewed for Canadian TV’s Much More Music channel. Here’s a pic of me going for the high road:

You can see all the way up her skirt, Matt!
You can see all the way up her skirt, Matt!

I would’ve included a link to the video, but for the life of me I can’t find it. I’ll just have to trust someone is watching me talk about panties somewhere in the great white north.

Finding Panties, er, ParkingBefore anyone realized you shouldn’t put me in front of a camera, I was one of the Mobifest filmmakers interviewed by Bite TV (again, you’re going to have to take my word for it).

In my own charmingly stilted, sweating way, I filled them in on how annoying finding parking is in LA — because no one’s talked about that before — until I remembered I had a much more interesting story about when I got beaned in the head by karma.

All this and more on a Betacam tape that’s being put through a bulk eraser somewhere in Toronto’s Entertainment District right now.

Finally, before you think this is just a scattershot way to gather more hits with free cash, C1AL1$ and debt relief, nude celebs, let me bring it all back and share with you my first encounter with the beguiling Ms. Aguilera, on a video salute to the most Inconsequential Women of the 20th Century.

It’s important to note that people hate this video. At least it went over better than the one about Mother Teresa.

Join me at Mobifest Toronto!

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There’s nothing better than casually mentioning in conversation, “Sorry, I can’t make it — I’ll be out of the country next week.” But indeed I will be, if only as far as Canada’s cleaner, less populous answer to New York City: Toronto.

I’ll be attending the Mobifest mobile film festival, which is featuring two of my Emergency 411 entries. I’m looking forward to seeing the city and experiencing all it has to offer, but am not looking forward to feeling the hurt over the $USD1 = $CA 0.96 exchange rate. Let’s just say there are going to be some very upset strippers when I toss 96 cents in change on stage.

And that's in Canadian Dollars

But before I can do all that, I’ll have to get through three airports. When I get back, I’ll let you know what getting Tazered feels like.

Giving The Animation Show the “411”

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I’ve been really busy with another E411 the last few weeks and forgot to post this, but The Animation Show continues to be completely awesome and gave me an interview on their site!

Tim Heiderich informs on “Emergency 411”!

So if you want to know more about the boundless genius who thought of animating monochromatic stick figures, check it out! They’re actually really good questions (and if not for me, read the rest of the interviews to find out how the pros do it). And while we’re at it, the cartoon that was inspired by the worst opening act in music’s history:

There’s more on the Emergency 411 MySpace my YouTube page.

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