ANIMAL’s feature Artist’s Notebook asks artists to show us their original “idea sketch” next to a finished piece. This week, Dutch-Brazilian New York-based artist Rafaël Rozendaal talk about his water-inspired website piece Nothing Ever Happens.

I have been using water as a subject throughout the years. I’m not sure exactly why. Water is definitely important in life, and I like that water is not allowed to be anywhere near a computer. Water is dangerous in combination with electricity.

The first step was looking at different depictions of water, throughout the ages.

I looked at Da Vinci drawings, golden age cartoons, video games and I filmed water in different places, — pools, parks, at home.

I’ve always been fascinated by early animation. The technology was new and everything had to be invented. How do you animate water?

How do you animate light reflecting on water?

I like it when the medium is very different from the subject matter.

Think about how strange it is — humans create a technology (animation) and then use that to emulate things we see every day, things that are familiar to us already.

The next step is to find how I want to depict the water, to find the proper visual reduction so it can work in computer code. I sketched on the computer, and made some animated gifs.

 Next step is to email those sketches to my programmer, Reinier Feijen.

Then we talk on Skype.

He builds a prototype, and I can change settings in that prototype.

I can change speed, amount of lines, balance between black and white, etc etc. Final step is playing with the values until it feels right.

RAFAËL ROZENDAAL, NOTHING EVER HAPPENS (2013) <- CLICK

See Rafaël Rozendaal current solo show at the Postmasters Gallery.

Previous Artist’s Notebook selects:

Artist’s Notebook: Kate Torn
Artist’s Notebook: Adam Ferriss
Artist’s Notebook: Andrea Crespo
Artist’s Notebook: Jesse Darling
Artist’s Notebook: Melissa F. Clarke
Artist’s Notebook: Tristan Perich
Artist’s Notebook: Mattie Hillock
Artist’s Notebook: Daniel Temkin
Artist’s Notebook: Rick Silva
Artist’s Notebook: Nicolas Sassoon
Artist’s Notebook: Lorna Mills
Artist’s Notebook: Yoshi Sodeoka