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One of us (Chris) have always liked motion graphics and animation. Film title design is a prime example of this type of art.  They are designed to introduce a movie to the audience, set the tone, and at the same time give credits to the actors, director, producer and the crew. In some movies, there is so much creativity poured into making it that it can be more thrilling to watch than the movie itself.   Like music or music video, it can be enjoyed multiple times. Before youtube and vimeo, it would be difficult to find in one place a collection of opening or closing titles, other than owning all the films in its entirety.

One of the better known and much imitated example is the title sequence designed by Kyle Cooper for the movie “Se7en” (1995, David Fincher directing Bratt Pitt, Morgan Freeman, and Gwyneth Paltrow). Watch it on full screen.

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Then I discovered this web site a few years back – the Art of the Title – that is dedicated to this art form. In the beginning, it only posted the opening title itself – I even donated a clip, don’t think they ever used it.  Now, many of the pieces are posted on their site with “the making of … ” which includes interview with the artist about the design, planning, etc. – just like the bonus materials on a DVD.

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Saul Bass is one of the most celebrated classic movie title designer. To celebrate the release of the long-awaited book Saul Bass: A Life In Film & Design, the folks behind the Art of Title put together a brief visual history of some of Saul Bass’s most celebrated work. Click here or watch below. Don’t forget to switch to HD and full screen.

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Another example which features strong graphic design is the sequence for “Catch me if you can” (2002, Steven Spielberg directing Leo DiCaprio). Love the use of arrows and parallel lines here.

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Nowadays, the production values behind video games rival those of movies, Deux ex: Human Revolution is a game I am currently playing.  It has one of the best looking high-tech title sequence for a video game.

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There are many many more enjoyable pieces of artful designs out there. I will post some of them here from time to time.

Want to see the 2011 Emmy nominations for outstanding main title design (Game of Thrones, Rubicon, Broadwalk Empire and others) ?  Click here.

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