David OReilly (artist)

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David O'Reilly
DavidOReilly (cropped).jpg
Born (1985-06-21) June 21, 1985 (age 32)
Kilkenny, Ireland
Nationality Irish
Website www.davidoreilly.com

David OReilly (born 1985 in Kilkenny, Ireland) is an Irish film maker and artist based in Los Angeles, California, US. He is known for creating distinctive 3D animated films.


Aside from a 1-minute film entitled Ident, from which he draws his logo, the earliest work available on his website is WOFL2106.[1] This short draws equally on original designs and popular internet memes to create a disturbing landscape of serenity juxtaposed with chaos. This film sets the tone for his entire œuvre, though the direct inclusion of outside memes disappears in his later work.

He created several animation sequences and props for the 2007 film Son of Rambow,[2] as well as animation for the "guide" sequences in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, with Shynola.[3]

He created the first video for Irish rock band U2's single "I'll Go Crazy If I Don't Go Crazy Tonight".[4] The video was released on U2.com on July 21, 2009.

In 2007, he produced the surreal short film "RGB XYZ" which tells the story of a young man kicked out of his parents' house to work in the big city, while using low poly graphics, compression artifacts, text to speech voices, jarring color palettes, and discordant tones.

His short film Please Say Something was awarded the Golden Bear at the 2009 Berlin International Film Festival, Best Narrative Short at the 2009 Ottawa International Animation Festival[5] and several other awards.[6]

His short film, The External World, premiered at the 67th Venice Film Festival and the 2011 Sundance Film Festival, and has since won over forty awards on its festival circuit including the IFTA for Best Animation.[7]

He wrote, directed, produced and animated the Adventure Time episode "A Glitch is a Glitch" for Cartoon Network, becoming the first guest director in the network’s 20-year history.

In 2013 he worked on the Spike Jonze movie Her as animation director on the sequences where the characters are playing video games. His work there inspired him to explore developing real video games for release. His first was Mountain, released in July 2014 in partnership with Double Fine Productions for personal computers and mobile devices. Mountain features little interactivity but allows the player to create and watch a solitary mountain floating in space as it offers its thoughts to the player, and as random objects collide and become embedded within it.[8] It was generally praised by critics, noting it as a subversion what one normally expects for a video game.[9]

In 2016, OReilly announced a second game, Everything, a "simulator of everything", on which the player can play as anything, from bacteria to galaxies.[10] Everything was released on March 21, 2017 on PlayStation 4, with Windows and Mac versions to follow on April 21, 2017.[11][12]

Octocat Adventure[edit]

On March 13, 2008, a YouTube user named RANDYPETERS1, a 9-year-old boy from Chicago, submitted a handdrawn animated video about Octocat, a red cat head with eight long legs looking for his parents. The videos featured crude MS Paint animation and a loud, highpitched, childlike voice narrating. On September 7, the fifth, final episode was released, but featured an unexpected twist - at almost three minutes into it, the crude sketchy animation switched to intricately crafted 3D with an orchestral soundtrack; the whole Octocat story (and as such, the Randy Peters persona) was revealed to be by David OReilly.[13] In an interview he said "I wanted to try experimenting with the YouTube audience and Microsoft Paint. The story for Octocat came to me by reading the bible word-for-word backwards".[14]


OReilly's work is often characterized by the use of intentionally stripped down 3d graphics. He is known for popularizing the use of low-poly 3d and the use of 3d software as a personal and artistic tool, as outlined in his 2009 essay "Basic Animation Aesthetics".[15] He was an early adopter of glitch effects[16] and uses elements of the software used inside his work.[17] "[David] has been the man to lead animation through a conceptual blockage—3D animation was being dominated by commercial aesthetics....he deconstructed 3D to the point of absurdity.".[18]

Short films[edit]

Music videos[edit]


  1. ^ "THE DAVID OREILLY INTERNET WEBSITE -- Work". Archived from the original on 2011-09-28. Retrieved 2011-09-21. 
  2. ^ Wolff, Ellen (2008-05-02). "David OReilly: The 'Wrist' Behind Son of Rambow". Animation World Magazine. Archived from the original on 2009-07-20. Retrieved 2008-09-10. 
  3. ^ "IMDB page". IMDB. September 10, 2008. Retrieved 2008-09-10. 
  4. ^ a b "Go Crazy". U2.com. 2009-06-17. 
  5. ^ "Ottawa International Animation Festival - About OIAF 11". Animationfestival.ca. Retrieved 2012-04-17. 
  6. ^ "Please Say Something". Short Film Central. Retrieved 2012-04-17. 
  7. ^ "The External World". davidoreilly.com. 2011-06-30. 
  8. ^ "More invasive than Facebook: 'Mountain' from creator of games in 'Her'". 2014-07-01. 
  9. ^ Wilde, Tyler (August 20, 2014). "Why critics love Mountain, but Steam users are calling it "worthless"". PC Gamer. Retrieved April 3, 2017. 
  10. ^ Muncy, Jake. "Everythingis an Ambitious New Game About Being Anything". WIRED. Retrieved 2017-03-21. 
  11. ^ "Everything review". Polygon. 2017-03-21. Retrieved 2017-03-21. 
  12. ^ "David OReilly, Double Fine Launching ‘Everything’ Game". Animation World Network. Retrieved 2017-03-21. 
  13. ^ Octocat Adventures (HD)
  14. ^ meg. "Q & A with Irish animator David O'Reilly | meg". Meg.ie. Retrieved 2012-04-17. 
  15. ^ "Article on Basic Animation Aesthetics". 
  16. ^ "Artful error". Archived from the original on 2012-04-20. Retrieved 2012-05-21. 
  17. ^ "Juxtapoz Profile". Retrieved 2012-05-21. 
  18. ^ "SOTW Awards". Retrieved 2012-05-21. 
  19. ^ Cone, Justin (2008-09-09). "David O’Reilly: Octocat Adventure 5". Motionographer. Retrieved 2008-09-10. 
  20. ^ OReilly, David (2008-09-07). "OCTOCAT ADVENTURE". David OReilly. Retrieved 2008-09-10. 
  21. ^ "RGB XYZ (2008)". IMDB. September 10, 2008. Retrieved 2008-09-10. 

21 Rotary Club of Dublin David O'Reilly winner €10,000 Leonardo da Vinci prize 2011 in Dublin

External links[edit]