There’s no shortage of joy in the works of Korean artist Myungsik Jang. In his animations, jello characters strike poses and strut dance moves all for your viewing pleasure. These adorable doofuses—with their glossy skin, gelatinous shape, and an eagerness to jiggle to good music—are almost too good to be true. Those who’ve met Jang’s colorful characters can’t seem to get enough.
The 3-D animated project, Surrealjelly, is a rabbit hole that burrows deep into Jang’s vivid imagination. “I don’t like being controlled by reality,” he says. “And so, I’d like to do everything in my power to make a digital universe that defines beauty as I understand it.”
在任何时候观看韩国艺术家 Myungsik Jang 的作品，都能带来无比舒适的体验。快看！画面中的小人正在镜头前卖弄身姿，它们身体柔软，像是一颗颗会动的糖果，欲要融化在你的视线里 —— 晶莹剔透的质感、可爱的果冻造型、鲜艳的颜色、随音乐鬼畜的身体，这些元素单是听起来就令人捧腹，更会产生一种时不时想翻出来看看的冲动。Myungsik 将这一系列作品取名为《Surrealjelly》（不真实果冻），他希望可以借助 3D 动画形式，通往心中的魔法幻境。他说：“我不喜欢被现实操纵，所以渴望尽全力在自由的数字世界里创造美丽。”
Jang has loved animation since childhood. Stop-motion shows such as Wallace and Gromit and Pingu captivated his imagination. The mischievous characters, quirky narratives, and jerky frames were all part of their enduring charm. Even years later, after graduating with a degree in industrial design and working full-time as a designer at Vogue in Seoul, the itch to create his own animated works never quite subsided. Surrealjelly was born out of this steadfast love.
YouTube was instrumental in helping Jang learn the ropes. The online tutorials he scoured gave him the know-how to begin making animations in his free time. “The digital world offered a lot of possibilities,” he says. “I got tired of the limitations in industrial and commercial designs; in animation, the new workflow and textures of the medium felt reinvigorating.”
After countless trials and errors, Jang settled on the gelatinous characters of his now-signature works. Their jello forms appealed to him because, well, it looked delicious for one. But more importantly, the malleability of gelatin allowed him to mold each character as he saw fit. “Jello is flexible, and there’s room for error if I mess up,” he laughs. “It allows me to shape them in strange and unique ways.”
从 YouTube 上的动画制作教学视频开始，Myungsik 在工作之余尝试创作属于自己的动画，他说：“数字世界给予更多可能。我对工业和商业设计中的约束感到疲倦，而在动画制作里，新颖的材质和轮廓都会令我异常兴奋。” 在经过一系列尝试之后，Myungsik 选择以类似 “胶状、果冻” 的材质作为创作的中心，他认为果冻材质看起来秀色可餐，软糯的造型看起来更不会受到现实条框的限制，他接着说道：“果冻材质本身带有一定的灵活性，没必要太过追求精准，但可以设计出足够独特的形状。”
Elephants, dogs, giraffes, and even polar bears are all equally likely to appear in jello form in Jang’s works. Dialing up the absurdity, some of these animals are even deliberately designed to look like unfinished 3-D models. And the goofballs that populate his work—a rotating cast of yellow and pink creatures—happily frolic alongside the wildlife in the fairytale universe that Jang has lovingly crafted.
大象、小狗、长颈鹿、北极熊，这些动物以某种奇妙的形态呈现，一些甚至像是半成品，看起来过分滑稽与可爱。还有一些黄色或粉色的小人，它们的造型更加夸张，嘟起的小嘴好像很享受这片幻想的境地。这些小人的造型来自 Myungsik 的手稿，在 3D 渲染的过程中，他刻意让小人的造型看起来不那么具体，希望把更多想象的空间留给观众。
Jang’s works are often based on his most joyous memories. Each fantastical scenarios and the dreamy color palettes beckon viewers to set aside their troubles and get lost in his gelatinous universe. “The jello characters are me, in a way,” he says. “They’re manifestations of my ideals of happiness, speaking for me in these digital realms. I want audiences to meet these characters, share a laugh with them, and maybe even dance alongside them.”
《Surrealjelly》中每一幅作品都有自己的主题，这些主题往往来自 Myungsik 日常生活中关于快乐的体验。结合丰富的场景与暧昧的色调，让观众暂时放下烦恼，去遥想画面里的意境，他说：“果冻就是我本人，它们实现了我对于快乐的想象，为我在数字的世界里代言。同时，我也希望观众可以随动画中的角色一起微笑，一起舞蹈。”
Surrealjelly is still in its infant days, and Jang plans on building the series out in more ambitious ways. In his most recent endeavors, he’s looking to bring his characters to life with motion-tracked AR, which will make his dreams of seeing people dancing and sharing a laugh with his surreal jello characters that much closer a reality.
对于 Myungsik 来说，《Surrealjelly》的幻想之旅并不仅限于动画，在未来，他还希望自己的作品以 AR 的形式呈现，并制作成镜头滤镜，让这些可爱的角色真正进入到现实生活中。目前，他正尝试将动态追踪的技术运用在这帮小可爱的创作中。