Pixar has just released the first image from new, eight-minute short film Purl, which will be debuting at the SIGGRAPH conference in Vancouver this August.
Pixar’s lead short film producer David Lally teased Purl with a tweet saying, “How much yarn does it take to yarn-bomb the Luxo Ball? Find out!” No other details on the film’s plot have been shared.
Purl marks the second film produced as part of Pixar’s new experimental shorts program, announced at last year’s SIGGRAPH. The program aims to allow storytellers more creative opportunities without executive oversight, working under tight deadlines with limited resources in a busy studio. The first short film under the program, Smash and Grab, is reportedly completed but has not yet received wide exposure.
According to the SIGGRAPH program guide, Purl “explores the use of ‘digital backlot’ management, an evolution of Smash and Grab’s motion capture application, sharable animation libraries, our real-time shading software Flow, and production practices that allow a busy feature animation studio to continue telling even more stories.”
Purl is directed by Pixar story artist Kristen Lester, who has been working as a story artist at the studio for the past five years.
“This certainly doesn’t feel like a fluke,” Lester said of her career at Pixar in an article by Times Colonist. “I worked really, really hard to get here…I loved animation more than anything. It’s work done with joy…For me, it was in my soul. It was something innately in me.”
More information on Purl will be revealed when the short film screens at SIGGRAPH on August 13. Pixar employees attending the screening and talk include Lester, Steven Clay Hunter, David Lally, David Munier, Farhez Rayani, and Matthew Silas.