The book will document the making of the 1979 ‘Tom Waits For No One’ short film. The film was animated by John Lamb using rotoscoping, it has been labelled as one of the first music videos of its kind. The video features Waits singing ‘The One That Got Away’. Watch below.
The book will 160 pages of “animation cels, rotoscope drawings, character studies and backgrounds… documenting the artwork and inspiration behind Tom Waits For No One”.
Director Lamb says of the film: “It was nearly two years before MTV’s debut, and six years before an animated rock video would appear on MTV, but we were inspired by a burgeoning market: rock ‘n’ roll videos. All we needed was a subject… and then I recalled Waits at The Roxy. With his signature vocals and body language, Tom Waits’ motion would translate beautifully into animation. Creative juices began flowing, a pitch was hatched, phone calls were returned, storyboards drawn, and after several meetings with Tom, sets were built and production began.
“After 35 years, in a world where music, video, animation, digital technology and young talent create new product on a global scale by the hour, ‘Tom Waits For No One’ reaches out from the 20th century with the seeming draw of a throwback to analog itself. The live action images were hand traced frame by frame, turned into a caricatured drawing, inked onto a cel, then hand painted, photographed and edited on the most technology-forward analog video tools, by young artists who would transition into the 21st century’s digital world to become leaders in their industries.”
“The production contents of ‘Tom Waits For No One’, and especially the scrapbook, have been close to my heart for decades. Through many ups, downs and mortality bending backflips, I’ve managed to hang onto most of the production elements from this film, which include the final cels, the drawings, the live action footage, the rotoscope itself and the video pencil tests created by this talented group of artists.”