I’m a Little Teapot: Lotte Reigner


Lotte Reigner was born in Berlin on June 2nd, in 1899. As a child Lotte Reigner was very fascinated with the Chinese art of silhouette puppetry, even building her own puppet theater so she could perform for her family and friends. As an adult Reigner was no less talented. In 1918 she created The Pied Piper of Hamelin. Because of her success, she got into the Institute for Cultural Research, where she met her husband. The very first film she directed was The Ornament of the Enamored Heart, made in 1919. This was a short piece involving two lovers and an ornament that reflected their moods. This film was very popular and everyone loved it. During the next few years she made 6 short films, which were all produced and photographed by her husband. In 1923 Louis Haen asked her to produce a feature length animated film, which was later named The Adventures Of Prince Achmed, completed in 1926 and is still popular today. After she created Prince Achmed, she later created Doctor Dolittle in 1928, which she based off the book. She even got the privilege to direct a live action film with Rochus Gliese, called The Pursuit of Happiness made in 1929. Lotte Reigner was very popular, and it is said that everyone who made animated fairy tales were influenced at some time by her. She influenced many people and her work is still inspiring today.

One element of her works that is very common is the dark figures in the front, then the light background. Lotte Reigner has a very distinct animating style. She has the figures in the front black, to showing any details of the figures, and keeps her background light so you can see their movements. This is common in one of her pieces, called The Adventures Of Prince Achmed, and many of her other works. Many colors are used in this piece, being blue, orange, yellow, and green as a background. There is a lot of detail put into this film. Lotte Reigner also doesn’t stay in the same viewpoint in her works. She zooms in on the characters making them look larger and smaller, and provides a sence a drama and distress when you are watching her works. You can see emotions clear and get an understanding of what is going on.

I wanted to use her style of using the light background with dark figures in the front, making sure I got the storyline across to the viewer. I used cutout animation and a blue background, and black paper in the front. I think I was successful at getting the storyline across, and did a good job at using her animation style. You can clearly see what is going on, and what message I am trying to get to the reader. I based my animation off I’m a Little Teapot, making all the shapes and figures completely black. My work varies from Lotte Reigner’s in the fact that I don’t have nearly as much detail as she does in her work. There are many more edges to the characters and there’s a lot more going on in her work then mine. I kept mine very simple and straight-foreword, while her work is much more complex. Overall I think I was very successful at using Lotte Reigner’s style of animation.

“Book : The Silhouette Film.” Book : The Silhouette Film. N.p., n.d. Web. 20 Oct. 2013.

“Lotte Reiniger.” Lotte Reiniger. N.p., n.d. Web. 20 Oct. 2013.

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