Karin Fong Film Titling & Film Titling as Experience

For this week’s extra lecture discussion post I decided to watch the film titling videos about Karin Fong.  Karin Fong is an Emmy Award-winning graphic designer and director who founded a company called Imaginary Forces. She has worked on a wide variety of projects including film, television shows, video games, and advertising.

The first video focuses on some of the movie title design that she has done including Terminator and Pink Panther.  For Terminator she discussed the challenge with creating the title sequence for such an iconic franchise.  The first Terminator came out in 1984 and had a title sequence with very large bold letters.  For Terminator Salvation in 2009, Fong knew that she wanted to stay true to the classic opening sequence but also add her own flare to it.  Thanks to more advanced technology, she was able to create a similar title scene but differentiated it by adding “concrete, gritty, and metallic” textures to the letters while also creating something more virtual.  Newer technology also allowed Fong to add machine vision to the movie.  This concept involved the usage of depth perception cameras like one used on the Mars rover.  This depth perception imaging created a unique animation style that could not have been achieved otherwise.  The modern Pink Panther title sequence held true to the classic Pink Panther title sequence from 1963.  The goal was to capture the jokes and essence of the original but also update the scenery and animation to better relate to modern audiences.

The second video discusses the variety of applications of film and how Fong combines many different media in order to deliver her message.   Growing up, Fong knew she wanted a career in the arts.  She enjoyed the combination of pictures and imagery in creating a message.  This led her to create and interactive children’s book for learning the alphabet.  She also helped with the title scene for the Cat in The Hat movie.  Having creative control of scenery, music choice, and design she was able to create a cohesive and immersive title scene that held true to the classic Dr. Seuss style.  One of the last projects Fong discusses is working on the video game God of War.  Initially she was contracted to help develop some of the action sequences within the game.  Later she was asked to make a live action commercial for the game.  One challenge Fong faced in making the commercial was that Sony wanted the main character to feel very humane and relatable, even though he is a powerful killer in the game.  Using close up angles and a very emotional scene involving complex computer-generated imagery Fong was able to capture the emotions of the characters brought to life in the commercial.

Karin Fong is a renowned designer as she has worked on many well-known projects.  Her farewell message was for her viewers to push boundaries, try to work outside of the comfort zone, and to collaborate with peers.  By doing these three things Fong has grown greatly as a designer and achieved great success pursuing her passion.