S.C.A.N. – Searching Alternative Nature

S.C.A.N. – Searching Alternative Nature

S.C.A.N. – Searching Alternative Nature (excerpt) from Dénes Ruzsa on Vimeo.

(2015, 06’43″)

With the invention of the telescope and the further development of the technology we got more and more detailed picture of the world around us. We learned more and more about the stars, birth of stars and the star death. Stars provide the essential light for life. We discovered that almost every chemical element in our body was formed inside the stars. The formation of our solar system is also caused by previously lived stars. Our galaxy formation is the result of a supernova shock wave. Our existence is a natural consequence of the existence of the stars, so we can suppose the idea that in our distant galaxies our distant relatives lives.

Camera-less animation each frame was made or reproduced with a flatbed scanner.


This work was made in 2015. It is about the birth of the Universe, about light, about starts. Nowadays everybody knows that without stars we would not be here.

The carbon atomic nucleus were formed in earlier stars – these became supernova – were scattered in space by the end of their lives (supernova explosions). This became involved in the later gas clouds, so at the time of the emergence of new solar systems these atoms were present and participated in the later cycle. This is how carbon end up to our Planet.

There are more than 100 billion stars in a galaxy – the film is about their lives, their genesis and death.

Many documentary film seeks the basic questions of life – they are trying to model the Universe and the stars in a realistic way, with the help of CGI. We wanted something else…

Fernand Léger took a shot of a woman’s lacquered nails and then increased by a factor  a hundred – the viewers thought they were watching an astronomical photo.

Not by accident because the Universe is in us …

Just think about the vein of the leaves – a small tree image shows up. Or the structure of the atoms in which the electrons circulate around the atomic nucleus just like the planets around our Sun. Or the spider web that has the same pattern as the large-scale structure of the Universe. And many more examples could be mentioned …

Something similar happened to us when we put everyday objects on the scanner surface – a small universe started to rise …

Each frame of the animation was made or reproduced with a flatbed scanner. First, we were just surprised that the monitor cleaning foam blends on the surface of the scanner like the galaxies in the Space, then it seemed completely natural that various reflectors, bicycle lights, acrylic paint, printed and crumpled photos, vegetables, sugar, salt were used for the animation, for the abstract mapping of the Universe.

A few years earlier, we used the scanner as an imaging device – not in a traditional way – but we felt that there were more options in direct animation and in motion picture.

The role of random was also sufficiently large during the workflow, we never knew exactly what kind of image we are going to get (unlike with the traditionally shot materials, where is complete creative control over the images), we could only guess what would be the issue… the traditional categories, like depth-of-field, exposure values could have been forgotten, we forced the machine not to work the way engineers designed it … so from everyday objects such as vegetables, monitor cleaning foam, etc. the whole Universe can be created as all their components were created in stars.

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