An animator has recreated Childish Gambino‘s ‘This is America’ video using an ancient computer.
The pixel animation is the project of Pinot Ichwandard, who has spent a month on the task, so far. At the time of writing, he’s created 470 frames, spending about two-three hours per night on the video.
He described his process as “pixel-knitting”, telling VICE “it’s like riding a classic car.”
“[The technology’s] limitation becomes a new value, new art. All forgiven, every single flaw like ‘not enough memory’ is permissible… with this method, the process itself becomes more important than the result. The process is the story,” he adds. “This is the reason I posted the process on my Twitter thread. Without those processes, the result is just another piece of pixel art, generated by modern machine.”
Ichwandard listed the tech used for the project, which uses a a 1970’s Summagraphics Tablet connected to a 1984 Macintosh 128k’s MacPaint program. He then transfers each frame via a floppy disk to a 1987 Macintosh SE, animating them with the MacroMind VideoWorks software.
You can see some of Ichwandard’s work on the Childish Gambino video below.
Trying to capture Donald Glover’s motion in MacPaint. pic.twitter.com/gL7JErrJpN
— Pinot W. Ichwandardi (@pinot) June 9, 2018
GIF test. pic.twitter.com/8ie4YTdy2k
— Pinot W. Ichwandardi (@pinot) June 12, 2018
Time-lapse on MacPaint. pic.twitter.com/V3KQC8plj2
— Pinot W. Ichwandardi (@pinot) June 14, 2018
Synchronizing the first 15 seconds. pic.twitter.com/fhofEeSWzy
— Pinot W. Ichwandardi (@pinot) June 18, 2018
In-between checking for the first 152 frames in MacroMind VideoWorks/Director 1.0 pic.twitter.com/CzgfZvBl9g
— Pinot W. Ichwandardi (@pinot) June 20, 2018
– Macintosh 128K with MacPaint 1.5 & Summagraphics MacTablet.
– Macintosh SE with MacroMind VideoWorks & Apple 1GB External SCSI hard drive.
– BMOW Floppy Emu for data transfer via SD card. pic.twitter.com/eSeAeOwGQj
— Pinot W. Ichwandardi (@pinot) June 24, 2018
315 frames total so far. pic.twitter.com/AOgK4dO7Cn
— Pinot W. Ichwandardi (@pinot) July 1, 2018
So far so good. I think. ? pic.twitter.com/EJvvIpjYqZ
— Pinot W. Ichwandardi (@pinot) July 6, 2018
A month later: 470 frames, 38 seconds of Donald Glover dance. Timelapse of the actual MacPaint files. pic.twitter.com/7D7Uf0CdU1
— Pinot W. Ichwandardi (@pinot) July 9, 2018
In the aftermath of the video’s release, Glover previously admitted he had avoided online reaction.
“Some friends have sent a couple [of the pieces], but, for real, I haven’t been on the Internet since [it came out],” he told Jimmy Kimmel.
“It’s bad for me. I’m really sensitive. I see one negative thing, and I track that person down. I go to their Instagram and be like, ‘You’re not so great. That baby’s not even that cute!”
The rapper and singer will play the Greenwich venue on November 4. It will mark Glover’s second London performance of the year, after his headline slot at Gunnersbury Park’s Lovebox Festival this month.