Speed drawing and animation of the 'Enigma moth'

Aenigmatinea glatzella – which has iridescent gold and purple wings – is a ‘living dinosaur’ that represents an entirely new family of primitive moths.

"This is the first time since the 1970s that a new family of primitive moths has been identified anywhere in the world,” from the CSIRO release.

I was asked to contribute an animation to accompany the announcement of this special creature. I would normally use an iOS animation program for this type of thing, but the program has since had a lethal update.

And since manual and traditional animation is too time consuming, I thought I’d film a speed sketch. After completing the side-view illustration, I used stop-motion techniques to make the scales blow off the moth.

On the top-down (dorsal) illustration, I manipulated the image once I’d finished, serially skewing the wings to give the illusion of upward flapping.

I would ordinarily be dead against putting glitter and tinsel on a painting, but the moth’s scales are too amazing to stick with just the comparatively dull water-colour.