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Dan Toth moved here with his wife in August, and proceeded to make animation shorts about key spots in the city

COURTESY PHOTO: DAN TOTH - Digital designer Dan Toth has a series of animation shorts posted on his website and Instagram page, highlighting spots in Portland.Dan Toth moved to Portland from New York City last summer, following his wife, who started a new job at Nike.

Looking for work himself, the digital designer started a project that many Portlanders would find interesting: He developed animated short loops for each day of the month of January, featuring something about our city to tell the story of Portland.

The 31 shorts are called "Portland Animated" and they can be seen on his website, www.youcancallmedan.com, and Instagram page, www.instagram.com/toth_digital. They highlight landmarks, icons, trends and notable subjects.

"I figured it was a good way to keep up my skills, do something fun and learn something about the city," said Toth, 31, a New Jersey native.

They range from two to 20 seconds long, and each took two hours to a couple days to make. "It's a little eye candy that relates to the city in some aspect," he added. Toth used the Cinema 4D program to model the shorts and video editing to complete the loops.

His favorites are an eternally blossoming rose, and animations of the Trail Blazers, Timbers and Thorns.

"I'm going to continue on with it, but not on a daily basis," Toth said. "I was pumping them out every day, and I'm going to take a break and then do some more."

So, what did he learn about Portland?

In part, the name Portland was decided on a coin flip, the Alphabet District pays homage to early founders and descendants and "there are a lot of strip clubs here, the most per capita in the nation," he said.

What does he like about Portland?

"Mainly it's Mother Nature," he said. "I was definitely geting burned out living in New York City, just a rat race constantly. It seems like people are kinder and slowed down to appreciate life (here). I love access to the outdoors; an hour or two in either direction and you're in wildly different geographies."


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