Low-Tech Creativity Lives in Lower Manhattan
Low-tech animation highlights SnakeMonkey Studios.
By Iain Stasukevich
SnakeMonkey Studios is the East Village base of operations for one M. Henry Jones (above) — filmmaker, animator and photographer. The New York City workspace is usually open to the public (hours vary) and guests will often find Jones tinkering on some new project with his 12-year old son (and co-animator), Atticus.
Henry and Atticus Jones in the studio.
Jones started making experimental music videos and puppet films in the 1970s, then transitioned into commercial animation before establishing SnakeMonkey, where he continues to produce short films music videos and 3D “fly's-eye” photography.
Examples of Jones' animation are his music videos for The Fleshtones' “Soul City” and Nervus Rex's “Go-Go Girl.” In the latter, only 99 images were used in the whole clip; a number seen on the left side of each picture indicates the frame number.
Though decidedly low-tech, Jones employed a 5-megapixel DSLR for SnakeMonkey’s video for The Homosexuals' “Bangin' My Head,” finishing in Final Cut Studio.
You can check out examples of their work at www.snakemonkey.tv.