Flaminguettes’ crazy world

ABOUT flaminguettes

Flaminguettes is a girl-girl animation duo from Mexico City formed by Daniela Villanueva and Mara Soler.
After a career as designers, animators and directors in recognized animation studios, Daniela and Mara decide to team up to explore a more personal, playful and feminine side of animation. Thanks to their experimental and fresh approach, they have been leaders in conceptual projects that have set the standard for the new animation scene in Mexico. This duo specializes in high end, handmade, feminine videos for a wide range of clients and situations as well as gifs, art installations and interventions, set design and visual identity.

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Hi Senoritas! When did you meet and why did you choose to work together?

Hi there! We met seven years ago at an animation studio. Daniela’s first task as production assistant was calling a designer named Mara. The call was really serious and professional. The next day Mara came to the office, Daniela opened the door and a very unexpected and happy friendship started. Later on, each one of us created a different animation studio with other partners, but decided to work together because at that time, there weren’t many girl animators in the city and as our friendship grew, we realized that we shared a very particular visual language.

Flaminguettes…why this name?

Well, we love all things tropical. We listen to a lot of reggaeton and we are teens of the 90’s. We grew surrounded by Hawaiian shirted Leonardo DiCaprios, nail polishes called “Wild Cherry” and flamingo beach signs, so it made sense. A pair of crazy pink flamingo ladies having fun in front of the computer screen…

Your style is really unique, what is your background? What do you find inspiring?

Thank you! Our backgrounds are very different. Mara was a football player and Daniela was a classic ballet dancer which made our lives seemed completely different until we reached college and started listening to similar music or watching similar movies. Mara studied Graphic Design and Daniela studied Media. We are self-thought animators that come from families that only let us watch educational TV shows and cartoons until we reached high school.  In terms of inspiration, we quickly realized that our friendship and vision as Flaminguettes was going to be based on a “NO GUILTY PLEASURE” policy. We are completely honest with what we like, what we read, what we see and have learned to embrace it and translate it into a visual identity. Mexican art, Indian art, Japanese art, pop art, graffiti, patterns, cats, food, texture, fashion, shiny stuff, plastic objects, everything has a visual value for us. We are object worshippers and collectors.

From “CORTINILLA MUJAM”

 

 

“We love to create things that make people feel happy or distracted from their everyday routine”

Flaminguettes

 

We noticed your short film “Etereas”, how did you come up with this concept?

We both hula-hoop as a hobby! While learning tricks and moves, we use to brake down the movement “frame by frame” in order to understand it more easily.  This was almost as “drawing” in the air with the hoop. We quickly realized that there where lots of awesome shapes and connections that could be created with the hula hoop and its relationship to space and hooper. We decided to make the film in order to make “real” all the things we “saw” while having fun with our hula-hoops.

The circle, lines, triangle, what’s the role of geometry in this project?

We are really into geometry in life, the natural forms and how perfect shapes can be found in the most unexpected places.  At the beginning of the project, we really wanted to make it all about math and its relationship to the circle.  We made research about how far we could push these concepts and learned about the work of Fibonacci, the existence of Sacred Geometry and the creation of particular shapes such as the Fruit of Life, Metatron’s cube and the relation of the circle with the Platonic Solids. We were very amazed and super excited and decided to turn theory into images. We made sketches of this figures on pictures and videos of ourselves doing specific tricks and took all these things to a mathematician to analyze. Shortly, we realized that the human movement is very inexact by nature and that complex shapes such as the ones we where interested in, could only be created accidentally. This made us focus the project in only making a visual translation of the beautiful shapes and lines that can be created by combining a circle, human movement, patterns and space.

How long did it take you to bring to completion? What were the biggest obstacles you encountered working on this?

Well, at that time Flaminguettes was only our hobby. We worked in our other studios and funded the project from our own pockets. It took us three years to complete the video. The biggest challenge we encountered was that the hula-hoop’s movement, shape and visibility varies a lot depending on the speed and strength that you use to move it. There were no plug-ins or software that could help us create the final look that we were aiming for. So 70% of the film had to be animated frame by frame in a more classic form of Motion Graphic Animation.

In your opinion, what’s the craziest project you realized? Tell us about it?

For Mara, the “A whole Other Country” music video for Leitvox ft. Gavin Clark its definitely the craziest one. She is a big fan of Unkle and receiving this collaboration invitation from Leitvox was very unexpected and exciting.   Working with models, horses, holographic cardboard and giant plastic curtains at the same time was super bizarre. The postproduction took ages! It seemed like the project didn’t wanted to leave our side! For Daniela, the creation of “Baby Jesus, Mystic Oracle” is the winner. The “Camino” art project commissioned us the alteration of a ceramic baby Jesus inspired in the Mexican tradition of Rosca de Reyes, a celebration of the arrival of the Three Wise Men. Inspired by belief and faith, we decided to turn this piece into a magic 8 ball from the 80’s and “sell” it with a very bizarre T.V infomercial. Adapting the figure to work as a toy and still look as a design object was a real challenge.

What kind of reaction do you expect from someone looking at your work?

We like people to be surprised and amused! We love to create things that make people feel happy or distracted from their everyday routine. We really enjoy working with the unexpected, humor and fantasy.

What are you working now on? Could you reveal something?

We are working on “Multiples”, our second personal short film!  While making Etereas, we realized there where so much interesting things that could be done by digitally altering the human figure and the hoop that didn’t fit in the short film anymore. So, we decided to make a new one specifically to explore all these new things and concepts! We had the pleasure to work with the 5 times Guinness record holder Marawa the Amazing, hula-hoop extraordinaire and master of the sequin. The singer and compositor Jarina De Marco, queen of the tropicool and red lipstick expert, did the music. We are super excited with the project and plan to release the video somewhere by the end of this year. Fingers Crossed!

From “The Poool 2.0”