I particularly enjoyed watching the showreel of short films in the Visual Communication pathway room. As I have been curious about animation, it was really useful to see all the different ways people had gone about it; 3D textile stopmotion, hand-drawn lightbox animation using various drawing techniques, digital illustration & animation… Also, the advantage of seeing Foundation end of year shows is that I know the artists have achieved the work on display in the same timeframe as I have.
One project stood out to me, which was ‘out of skin’ by Effie Crompton. The animation addressed the subject of identity, and explored the complexities of one’s sense of belonging, and the confusion that attempting to conform can create. The issues that the film portrayed are closely linked to my own FMP, and led to a really constructive conversation with Effie.
Notes from crit with Effie Crompton
Practical techniques to explore:
- Silhouetting and paper-cutting – I could explore the use of these crafts in Southeast Asia, eg shadow puppets.
- I could see if/how weaving is used in traditional Vietnamese craftwork
- Boiling – this was something I noticed in all of the hand-drawn animations at the Kingston show; the technique of tracing the same image by hand. Each frame comes out unique, so that when looped the subject sort of trembles/wavers. The effect is more engaging than using the same image for an extended period, as when the animation has static periods it can disrupt the narrative and distract the viewer from the content.
- Photograph items in my home that show my family’s connection to Vietnam but also its English characteristics.
Effie pointed out that it may be worth re-doing interviews if I find that I didn’t gather the information I’d hoped for. Even if I don’t use the extra material it might be useful to have more footage + audio to choose from.
“people who have spread or been dispersed from their homeland”
Re-evaluate what I want this piece to do.
- Is it a personal exploration?
- A message?
- Raising awareness?
Explore the representation of people.
- There are different ways of showing a person. (Effie’s animation used both literal depiction but also more abstract, figurative representation.) Do I want a person in my animation? Why are they there and how should I represent them?
- Question why I want to do an animation. What does an animation allow me to do that a film or static illustration wouldn’t?
- Interesting parallel that could be worth exploring, particularly as I have interviewed my mother.
- Links to discussion of feelings of guilt that have been passed down through generations relating to language and disassociation.
- This relates to folklore, and the passing down of messages through generations; my interviews are a form of this process, as both my grandfather and mother have aurally passed on information to me – biographical stories but also thoughts and ideas.
- One of the most obvious forms of the visual representation of cultural identity, and I haven’t yet explored it!
- A very rigid, limited representation of identity; mine is a British passport and has no reference to my ethnic origins.
Artists I could look into:
- Jim Goldberg
- Cecile Emeke & her series ‘Strolling’