13 March 2011

Up! And Away at the British Balloon Festival

Image Credit Flickr User Peter II
Up! has quickly become one of the all time favorite animated films for many people and its popularity is reflected in the unusual places that references to it pop up – sometimes literally.  You might perhaps expect an imitator to make an appearance as a hot air balloon.  Not ones to disappoint the folks at the British balloon fiesta were happy to oblige this unconscious expectation. 
Image Credit Flickr User PeterPi
It really is a clever facsimile as well, with the canvas of the balloon produced as a myriad of smaller balloons.  However, what really makes it an effective tromp l’oeil are the three dimensional objects protruding from its shape, sticking out from the main body of the balloon in much the way it did in the Pixar movie. 
Image Credit Flickr Usermattbut4950
Image Credit Flicrk User mattbuck4950 
Image Credit Flickr User MattBuck4950 
If you haven’t seen the movie it is about an old widower, Carl, who sets off to pursue the dream he and his wife shared, to visit Paradise Falls in South America.  He chooses an unusual method to get there, by making the house he and his wife shared happily for many years in to a hot air balloon, unwittingly carrying a young boy, Russell, with him. 
Image Credit Flickr User PeterPi 
That is just the start of their adventures.  If you haven’t seen it – you don’t know what you’re missing.  The first twenty of so minutes of Up! which shows a montage of Carl and his wife Ellie’s life together is worth the price of the DVD alone. 
Image Credit Flickr User MattBuck4950
Image Credit Flickr User PeterPi
Image Credit Flickr User MattBuck4950   
One can only imagine the dreams of those inside this particular version of the Up! house as they set off on their own adventure.  Perhaps their destination is not quite as far as South America but needless to say they will have set alight the imagination of many a child (both little legged and disguised as an adult) at the site of their creation

Image Credit MattBuck4950 
A close inspection, of course, and the game is up but there is still no denying the cleverness of the idea and the skill used in its execution.

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