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Tattoo art comes to life in creepy animation

Launched in 2011, Random Acts is a daily arts strand screened on the UK's Channel 4. It showcases specially-commissioned three-minute films chosen for their bold expressions of creativity. And this one from Lupus Films, directed by Karni & Saul (opens in new tab), is certainly no exception!

This beautiful yet chilling 30-second trailer provides a sneak peek of their story about a miniature predator in the world of tattoos, which will be broadcast on Channel 4 in the UK tomorrow night (and be available to watch online afterwards here (opens in new tab)).

Loosely inspired by the work of David Lynch, the film opens with a Lynchian-style beach scenario with a girl sunbathing in electric light, when she suddenly becomes infested by her own tattoos.

This shiver-inducing short sees a girl become infested by her own tattoos

This shiver-inducing short sees a girl become infested by her own tattoos

Aardman input

To develop the shiver-inducing short, Karni & Saul enlisted the help of the world-famous Bristol animation studio Aardman. All of the live-action footage was shot in Aardman's studio, with the insect tattoo art (opens in new tab) developed by Saul animated by the Aardman CG team in Maya (opens in new tab) and composited in After Effects (opens in new tab).

Directors Karni & Saul comment: "In Skinmeal, we tried to make a piece that was visually tempting and, at the same time, had a sharp edge. Like a flower with a trap, that hopefully can get under your skin. The result was a moody piece based on the food chain or, as we call it, skinmeal."

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