French artist Kévin Gemin analyzes the mysterious ways in which birds move — less "ah, the majesty of nature," more "that is a peculiar way for a creature to contort itself." Naturally, his talent is perfect for distilling a good bird GIF into a tiny, soul-inflating animation.
The best part? These little masterpieces are made with a Nintendo 3DS.
Gemin got his start animating in 2009 with a program called Flipnote Studio for the Nintendo DSi. He gave himself a limit of two colors to make pixel art, until he upgraded to the 3DS version of Flipnote Studio, which has allowed him to expand to four colors.
Though he’s a recent graduate of Emile Cohl in Lyon, Gemin is mostly self-taught. He credits drawing lots of fan art (his favorite character being Kirby) and tells aspiring artists, "Don’t be ashamed to draw lots of fanart, this is actually the best way to advance because you draw what you love." Gemin also notes pixel artist Paul Robertson and Dexter’s Laboratory creator Genndy Tartakovsky among his influences.
"Anything animated since 1930 to now is an influence for me," says Gemin. "Big movies, little one, well known, hidden, everything is amazing for me and give me inspiration and will to continue what I love the most: animating!"
Gemin also has a YouTube channel where he posts adorably charming videos of pigeons dancing the can-can and a Steven Universe tribute video called Steven Pigeon Universe. And if that’s not enough reason to make him your favorite internet animator, here’s a couple of friendly critters dancing to Beyoncé’s "Single Ladies."
But why birds? "Pigeons bob their heads! It was what made me love them so much, especially when their heads bob to the rhythm of a song!" says Gemin. "Also little birds are funny because they are fast, often stealing the bread before big birds."
That is a most excellent reason.