The Past in Motion

This does not, I suppose, technically qualify as archaeology.

However, in the theme of really-cool-bygone-stuff, I bring you: The Animated Bayeux Tapestry.

This is no substitute for getting to see the real thing–the sheer immensity of this tapestry just does not convey on a video clip.  However, it’s a cunning piece of animation, and the foley artist involved clearly had a lot of fun with everything from the feasting noises to the horses to the ‘guuuuh’ and ‘gack’ sounds of battle.  And if you’re looking for a way to liven up the story of 1066 and the Norman Conquest, this is a fun way to go about it.

Have I whetted your appetite for tapestries, Normans, or movie-making?

Britain’s Museum of Reading has a great site about the Bayeux Tapestry, including an activities page which made me grin.  [Specifically the directions on how to make your own Norman soldier’s helmet.  (Halloween, anyone?)]

If it’s the sounds that really caught your fancy, check out Paul Orselli’s great recent blog post: Exhibit Designer’s Toolkit: Creating the Sounds of Gore and Squidge

And if you’re intrigued by the illustration style of the medieval tapestry, try your hand at the Historic Tale Construction Cit (presumably pronounced ‘kit’ as all ‘c’s are hard).  Write and illustrate your own story using figures, settings, and beasts from the Bayeux Tapestry–careful, this is a hoot and dangerously addictive to those of us who grew up loving computer programs like Storybook Weaver.  The image interface is pretty sound, too–you can resize and flip the image elements, as well as type captions, with the option to create several frames, save them, email them, and submit to a visitor-created gallery.

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