Renegade Cooks Up Olive Oyl Spot

I recently confirmed the production method behind the animated Prego TV commercial featuring Olive Oyl. Renegade Animation utilized Flash for clean-up, but as you’ll plainly see the spot was animated traditionally. According to a recent story on Cartoon Brew, director Darrell Van Citters referenced the Fleischer Popeye character model for the spot, and he and Scott O’Brien then brought her to life. Cathlin Hidalgo Polvani and Randy Sanchez joined the crew as assistant animators.

If you hadn’t already noticed, a new Popeye DVD has been released. Popeye the Sailor: 1933-1938, Vol. 1 came out at the end of July, and this 4-disc set includes 58 shorts. The collection features Popeye the Sailor Meets Sindbad the Sailor (1936), a theatrical short which was nominated for an academy award.


  1. Scotty A August 29, 2007

    That’s some slick work there! It’s a tough task keeping a consistent line width when doing frame-by-frame in Flash. I’d love to see more on how they did this.

  2. Dagan Moriarty August 30, 2007

    Wow, VERY sweet!
    Great work Darrell and Renegade crew!… :)

    I LOVE Olive’s hands, especially… this is a very appealing treatment of a GREAT classic character… awesome!

  3. Shellie K August 30, 2007

    Thanks for posting the commercial.
    Awesome work Renegade !

  4. Anonymous August 30, 2007

    yeah, it’s nice but it looks like the board artist got lazy…

  5. Anonymous August 30, 2007

    No lazier than he did on the other commercials in the Prego series. They’re all staged the same.

  6. Anonymous September 1, 2007

    “That’s some slick work there! It’s a tough task keeping a consistent line width when doing frame-by-frame in Flash. I’d love to see more on how they did this.”

    Yeah, I agree. I would imagine it would be tough to maintain such controlled line work doing frame-by-frame “traditional” inbetweening in Flash using a Wacom tablet . Tight work by the Renegade clean-up crew.

    I’m going to reveal my ignorance and admit that I don’t totally understand how animating it on paper and then cleaning-up digitally with Flash tools is faster and/or cheaper than simply cleaning it up on paper ? Why is it better to do the clean up in Flash ? Does Flash in this case just function as a digital ink & paint system ?

  7. Anonymous September 3, 2007

    I did 90% of the clean up on this commercial.

    I have over 20 years of 2D clean up background, and have been doing Flash model rigging and and Flash animation for the last 4 years.

    in this case. it was animated and cleaned up on paper. then scannned, Streamlined (taking a bitmap and vectorizing it) , and imported into Flash. where it was painted.

    I think cleaning up 2D animation in Flash is to time consuming and would cost to much.

    I have to admit that the streamline process really makes me cringe!! it can’t be controlled and
    and the final product is far from 100% of the original artwork.

    drawing the characters larger on paper really helps Streamline, it has a problem with smaller circles and curves.

    Flash really helps with resizing the animation all at once and placing it in the scene with the live BG.

    Streamline software stopped being developed years ago.and never really was perfected.

    now that Adobe has acquired Macromedia. it would be awesome if they would incorporate a really highly sensitive version of Streamline software directly in to a new version of Flash.

    If this ever would happen we would see some great work that would be a hybrid of 2D traditional and Flash animation.

    All that be said, the commercial was a blast to work on. getting to work in Flash and also getting to work traditional 2d once in awhile (especially the old characters)is a great treat.

    Scott really does a great job animating this stuff. it’s very tough to take a well known character, and make it look that good under a tough commercial time schedule.

  8. David Nethery September 6, 2007

    Hello, Anonymous Comment #7 -

    Thanks for your very informative post .
    I especially appreciate your perspective as a veteran clean-up artist. (I have the same experience)

    Let me tell you what I have found to work very well: I can animate and clean-up in a very fine bitmap application called TVPaint using a Cintiq tablet, which allows me a lot of control over my line . Then I vectorize my drawings with a freeware application called Delineate which outputs to a SVG (scalable vector graphic) file. Right now what I have to do with an SVG is take it to Adobe Illustrator to convert to an AI file, then import to Flash or ToonBoom. Supposedly the next version of Flash will allow direct imports of SVG files. Illustrator CS 3 “Live Trace” also works very good to trace bitmap clean-ups from TVPaint to vector files. Even ToonBoom Studio’s quick ‘n’ dirty “Import and Vectorize” function works pretty well, especially if the bitmap images from TVpaint are very clean to start with.

    My clean-up drawings in TVPaint can be vectorized with any of these methods, and then taken to Flash or ToonBoom for final coloring , using the vectorized images to make much smaller file sizes than the bitmap images originally drawn in TVPaint (or drawn on paper, scanned and imported to TVPaint for clean up).

    If Adobe would make the “Live Trace” function of Illustrator CS 3 (which was what “Streamline” eventually developed in to) available in Flash then it would really be a huge improvement over Flash’s useless “Trace Bitmap” function.

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