animation

Watch the making of the Google doodle tribute to animator Lotte Reiniger

The pioneering German artist worked with silhouettes made out of paper and directed the first feature-length animated movie.

The doodles created by internet search engine Google get a fair bit of attention depending on the cuteness or intricacy levels. Since they started appearing in 1998, they have evolved significantly, with elaborate animations and country-specific tributes. The most recent doodle to grab attention pays homage to pioneering silhouette animation artist Lotte Reiniger on the occasion of her 117th birth anniversary on June 2. The German animation filmmaker predated Walt Disney by almost a decade and is often credited with the first feature-length animated film, The Adventures of Prince Achmed (1926).
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The Google doodle dedicated to Lotte Reiniger.
The tribute to Reiniger was created in her distinctive style by a Google animator Olivia. Google employees Nat and Lo (real names Natalie Hammel and Lorraine Yurshansky) went behind the scenes to show its making.
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Reiniger was born in Berlin in 1899. Her first film was a four-minute love story, The Ornament of the Enamoured Heart (1919). She created haunting versions of popular fairy tales such as Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty (both 1922).
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‘Cinderella’ (1922).
Reiniger’s breakthrough film, The Adventures of Prince Achmed, was loosely inspired by the Arabian Nights and came in 1926.
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‘The Adventures of Prince Achmed’ (1926).
Reiniger went on to direct several films, including a very early screen adaptation of Hugh Lofting’s Dr Doolittle novels, which feature a doctor who can talk to animals. Reiniger’s version was titled Doctor Dolittle and his Animals (1928).

Reiniger and her husband Carl Koch fled Nazi Germany in 1933 and lived in various countries until they officially emigrated to London in 1949 . Among their productions during this period are animated versions of the operas Carmen and The Magic Flute.

The original prints of her films were lost in these interim years and the restored copies that exist today are copies of copies, the original soundtrack having often been replaced by contemporary music and an increased pace, says historian William Moritz. “Although the ‘restoration’ reestablished the tints of the original, much of the fine background detail in most scenes is lost,” Moritz writes.

Reiniger died on June 19, 1981, at the age of 82. A video below, a part of the 1970 documentary The Art of Lotte Reiniger, shows her at work.

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‘The Art of Lotte Reiniger’ (1970).
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Advice from an ex-robber on how to keep your home safe

Tips on a more hands-on approach of keeping your house secure.

Home, a space that is entirely ours, holds together our entire world. Where our children grow-up, parents grow old and we collect a lifetime of memories, home is a feeling as much as it’s a place. So, what do you do when your home is eyed by miscreants who prowl the neighbourhood night and day, plotting to break in? Here are a few pre-emptive measures you can take to make your home safe from burglars:

1. Get inside the mind of a burglar

Before I break the lock of a home, first I bolt the doors of the neighbouring homes. So that, even if someone hears some noise, they can’t come to help.

— Som Pashar, committed nearly 100 robberies.

Burglars study the neighbourhood to keep a check on the ins and outs of residents and target homes that can be easily accessed. Understanding how the mind of a burglar works might give insights that can be used to ward off such danger. For instance, burglars judge a house by its front doors. A house with a sturdy door, secured by an alarm system or an intimidating lock, doesn’t end up on the burglar’s target list. Upgrade the locks on your doors to the latest technology to leave a strong impression.

Here are the videos of 3 reformed robbers talking about their modus operandi and what discouraged them from robbing a house, to give you some ideas on reinforcing your home.

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2. Survey your house from inside out to scout out weaknesses

Whether it’s a dodgy back door, a misaligned window in your parent’s room or the easily accessible balcony of your kid’s room, identify signs of weakness in your home and fix them. Any sign of neglect can give burglars the idea that the house can be easily robbed because of lax internal security.

3. Think like Kevin McCallister from Home Alone

You don’t need to plant intricate booby traps like the ones in the Home Alone movies, but try to stay one step ahead of thieves. Keep your car keys on your bed-stand in the night so that you can activate the car alarm in case of unwanted visitors. When out on a vacation, convince the burglars that the house is not empty by using smart light bulbs that can be remotely controlled and switched on at night. Make sure that your newspapers don’t pile up in front of the main-door (a clear indication that the house is empty).

4. Protect your home from the outside

Collaborate with your neighbours to increase the lighting around your house and on the street – a well-lit neighbourhood makes it difficult for burglars to get-away, deterring them from targeting the area. Make sure that the police verification of your hired help is done and that he/she is trustworthy.

While many of us take home security for granted, it’s important to be proactive to eliminate even the slight chance of a robbery. As the above videos show, robbers come up with ingenious ways to break in to homes. So, take their advice and invest in a good set of locks to protect your doors. Godrej Locks offer a range of innovative locks that are un-pickable and un-duplicable. To secure your house, see here.

The article was produced by the Scroll marketing team on behalf of Godrej Locks and not by the Scroll editorial team.