Eyke Volkmer – SF book cover artist

By Graphic design, Lost treasures

Having been a fan of Eyke Volkmer’s graphic work for the German publishing house Wilhelm Goldmann for a long time, it was no big surprise for me that a little online search found the complete cover artwork for the science fiction paperback series “Goldmanns Weltraum Taschenbuecher” in no time.

Through the very precise and lovingly work of Tommi Brem and his Houdine Nation webpage, all SF book covers of turkish born Eyke Volkmer can be watched at the link below, and even better, there’s also a book covering this work.

Volkmer produced 162 covers for Goldmann’s SF series during the 1960s and 70s, and most of the puristic, abstract minimal artwork still has this special modern touch that is so unique to his style. Wilhelm Goldmann himself must have known that he had a very talented man at the right place – it is delivered that he once commented on Volkmer’s work that “It doesn’t look like that in outer space.” At the same time, he encouraged Volkmer to keep on, knewing no one else was doing the same style at all.

more great sf book covers:

volkmer_01 volkmer_02 volkmer_03 volkmer_04 volkmer_05 volkmer_06 volkmer_07

All illustrations copyright by Eyke Volkmer,
copyright in the depicted publications: Wilheilm Goldmann Verlag

“It’s a small world” scans

By Film, Inhouse production

Three years ago, our semi-nostalgic clip “It’s a small world” emerged into the light. It wasn’t very long until it was chosen as a Vimeo staff pick, and since then it was watched about 50.000 times, made it to film festivals all over the world and recieved some funny and interesting comments. Beside some filmed footage, all images that were used in this clip were taken from a photoalbum I bought for $5 at the Melrose Trading Post, a very nice weekly fleamarket located in the Miracle Mile district in Los Angeles. If you are around, visiting Canter’s Deli at 419 North Fairfax Avenue is a must – with all the welcoming ambiance combined with the nostalgic charm of the 1950’s decor, it was the perfect surrounding to have a closer look at the bleached out photos in this bargain buy of the day.

Now, for the 3rd birthday of the “small world” clip, here are the original scans of all images in the album – most of them weren’t used, so there’s a good chance for a follow-up at some future day.

And please don’t throw away your old images, send them to the Playroutine home studio instead, OK?


The visual world of Alden Volney

By Film, Music


While collecting experimental video clips for the first Desert Dust Cinema in Lobo/Texas, I somehow stumbled across the clip “EDVARD GRIEG – Morning mood from ‘Peer Gynt’ Suite No1” by French guy Alden Volney, of which I never had heard before. At first, I had the impression that this was a treasure of a long forgotten past of the early film age, and Alden had just put this found footage on the web.

But as there was more to watch on his Vimeo page, I soon noticed that I was entering the own visual aesthetics of a true original artist. It felt like stepping into a new and strange but somehow also familiar world, filled with the color palettes of the past. Aldens animations in combination with classical music instantly brought the work of Oskar Fischinger to my mind, a perfect transformation of music into a free visual style, not tied to any rules of storytelling.

This work is even more compelling with the background knowledge that the artists’s audiovisual skills are all self-taught, as he states to never even have set a foot in an art school. The fascination of 70s and early 80s aesthetics combined with an oldschool animation style that seems to refuse modern influences – in a good way of course – forms an atmosphere that has its own special magic style.
Alden claims that his inspiration comes from the overall atmosphere of a lost age and not particular works of particular artists:

“I suppose that the key element that made me the person I am today is the fact that ever since my life begun, I’ve been exposed to great music and movies that clearly weren’t meant to be watched by a very young boy. When I was a kid, my father used to rent movies pretty much every week at the video store, and he was very interested in genre films, so this is how, by the age of 8 I had already seen stuff like Videodrome, A Nightmare on Elm Street, Midnight Express, Phantom of the Paradise, Akira, 2001: A Space Odyssey, Alien, The Dead Zone etc etc… I think that when your brain is exposed to such works at a time when it’s still going through the process of growing, it has to leave deep traces, I think it explains why, to me, moving images are a powerful tool.”

His video intro clip to the British band ‘Plugs’ was the perfect closing at the end of the Desert Dust Cinema film festival in Lobo/Texas 2011, and the sheer beauty of this warm, abstract and colorful animation in combination with the cool music left the audience totally amazed, to say the least.

Surprisingly Alden Volneys work is almost ignored in France, but in my opinion this status won’t last long. Working mostly abstract for years, he just das written and directed a music video with filmed live action (fortunately using his own colorgrading style). and hopefully more will be published in the near future.


They have retired

By Film, Inhouse production


“They have retired” – now in the phase of preproduction – will be finished sometime during 2013. At the moment, this is planned to be a series of clips to be released in yet unknows intervals. Generally speaking, these animations will deal with the interchanging pathways of technology, society and work. But don’t ask how at this time.

If things are going good, each animation will be accompanied by the release of a limited large-scaled silkscreen print – so stay tuned.

Desert Dust Cinema 2012 Flashback

By Desert, Film


This year’s Desert Dust Cinema film festival in Lobo is over, and finally here are some impressions shot during these days at the bluemoon weekend in our beautiful ghost town in Texas. A big thanks to everyone who made it into the desert – guests were visiting even from New Jersey and New York! The “Tucson invasion”, our long time friends from Austin, all locals and everyone alse who showed up made this festival a very special one and an experience we want to keep on going for sure.

A very special thanks to “Quiet Please” who somehow managed to drive their scruffy van packed with family, instruments and equipment from Tucson/Arizona to West Texas (and back, hopefully).
See you in Lobo next time!

Playroutine and Cinema 4D

By Inhouse production, Software


Happy to announce that the music video for Berlin’s Non Standard Institute will be part of the new showreel of Maxon Cinema 4D, my favorite choice of tools whenever 3D gets involved. The salt and pepper motive had been already included in Maxon’s calendar for 2012, and some illustrations also found their way into the Cinema 4D online gallery – curious what comes next.
Maxon Cinema 4D showreel