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Indonesian creates pixel animation of Childish Gambino’s 'This is America' using old Macintosh PCs

Jessicha Valentina
Jessicha Valentina

The Jakarta Post

Jakarta  /  Mon, July 16, 2018  /  04:32 pm
Indonesian creates pixel animation of Childish Gambino’s 'This is America' using old Macintosh PCs

Indonesian animator Wahyu Ichwandardi aka Pinot used a Macintosh 128K and a Macintosh SE to recreate Childish Gambino's dance moves in 'This is America'. (Pinot's official Twitter/File)

Indonesian animator Wahyu "Pinot" Ichwandardi has created an animated version of Childish Gambino’s "This is America" music video using Macintosh computers from the 1980s.

The artist told The Jakarta Post via email that he began by drawing using old MacPaint software during Ramadhan.

 “In the beginning, I drew New York City,” he said.

“At that time, the 'This is America' video went viral and it caught my children’s attention. However, the video is not for children [as] it contains a political message,” he said.

Pinot, who currently lives in New York with his family, recreated the music video to make it more suitable for children by animating Childish Gambino’s dance moves in pixel form.

The animation was created using old technology, namely the Macintosh 128K with MacPaint 1.5 and the Summagraphic MacTablet as well as the Macintosh SE with MacroMind VideoWorks and an Apple 1GB external SCSI hard drive. To transfer the data, Pinot used BMOW Floppy EMU.

He shared the creative process on his Twitter account.

“My children enjoyed [seeing] the process of how their father recreated the dance into a pixel animation on the Macintosh 128 and the Macintosh SE,” said Pinot.

Childish Gambino has not commented on the animation; however, the actor’s management team posted a positive comment about it on Instagram.

The recreation of "This is America" was not Pinot’s first go at using old computers to animate.

Read also: Artful adventures with Pinot and Dita’s Neverland Family

Last year, he produced a Star Wars: The Last Jedi trailer using an Apple IIc computer. The old-school trailer wowed internet users, including the film’s director, Rian Johnson.

Following the trailer, Pinot was given the opportunity work on Netflix’s Beyond Stranger Things.

Pinot said that working with modern ideas with the limitations of old computers allowed for a fresh perspective on art.

He explained that the experience was similar to collecting antique cars. “[The car is used] not for transportation. The process of taking care of it, making it work and riding it [make] everything enjoyable.”

Born in Indonesia, Pinot moved to Kuwait in 2007. He worked for Kuwait’s Al-Watan TV before moving to New York City.

He suggested that aspiring Indonesian animators be independent, instead of relying on the film or television industries.

“It is time to go guerilla on social media. [Build] your audience by creating 15 to 30 second animations,” he said.

Furthermore, he also said animators needed to be unique, consistent and master traditional hand-drawn animation techniques.

Pinot said this skill gave him the opportunity to work in the United States, where the technique originated but is seldom practiced.

Having a strong foundation of hand-drawn skills, he said, was useful for small businesses that worked with clients.

“It [creating art for clients] can be done within a one-month deadline,” he said, adding that the traditional style of animation was also suitable for brands that wanted to create organic, personalized campaigns. (wng)