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Funny Cardboard iPod Short Animation

December 8, 2009

Every time I watch this quick animated short it makes me laugh:

Even though it’s 3D animation, it’s made with printed cardboard boxes. I love the “cardboard iPod” the main character pulls out to drown out the annoying record player.  I never imagined you could get so much expression and character out of such simple shapes and artwork.  But film and animation student Rob Diaz really captured the personalities of his cut-out characters, and here’s what else he got right:

It’s got all the hallmarks of great storytelling: beginning, middle, end, interesting characters, surprises, conflict & resolution, rising tension & energy, and a great “punch-line” feeling at the end.

It also has all the ingredients of great viral video content. It’s language-independent, low-budget, very funny and very short, with catchy music. And guess what? It’s got nearly 35,000 views so far, just on Vimeo. That’s pretty huge for a smaller venue like Vimeo; I’d guess on YouTube it would do even better. But it’s not on YouTube. Not sure why, but it’s not.

If you want to make a viral video, I’d recommend you study and think about “Elio,” because even though it’s just a short little animated joke, it’s a real winner, and it will be just as funny in 20 years as it is now. Quality content has lasting value based on things that don’t change.

By the way, if you’ve found a great short video that’s a good example of a quality story in a short format, please send me the link; here’s a link to my facebook page, which is the easiest way to send me a message. I’m always on the lookout for content that can serve as a good model for successful, short web content.



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