Feat. David O’Reilly; Jim LeFevre; Paper Cinema; Animate Projects; Kieran Evans
Unpacked is a show-and-tell day. You have a chance to rummage around in the sketch-books and thought-processes of a number of filmmakers and artists doing exciting things with tools old and new. What gets these people up in the morning? How do they make a living? Ketchup or brown sauce?
“The web is a colossal, indiscriminate beast… All you can do is get its attention now and again.” Animator David O’Reilly has certainly made himself at home online, turning his hand to elaborate stunts (Octocat, iHologram) as well as more involved web dramas (Please Say Something); a pretty good case-study in distribution for the 21st century. Happily he also has talent in spades, and today will be talking about his collaborations with the likes of Hammer and Tongs and Shynola (“they taught me how not to have a life”) and the joys of ignoring the safe area.
Featuring four filmmakers who play with pre-cinema technologies to make images move. They’ll be showing some films, revealing how they made them, and discussing why they made them that way. Suky Best and Stephen Irwin draw on the simplicity and repeated action of flip-books; Mark Simon Hewis and Thomas Hicks both make zoetropes – in Mark’s case, a ‘life-size’ human one. But although they may all follow fundamental principles, the ways in which they apply them are complex, magical and mesmerising.
All four animators have been commissioned by Animate Projects, who produce work that explores the relationship between contemporary art and animation. www.animateprojects.org
As the technology around us gets more complex, simplicity seems to become more important. Following on from the previous session, here we have two practitioners who find gold by stripping film down to its fundamentals. Directing commercials and music videos at Nexus Productions, Jim Le Fevre is familiar with all kinds of CGI techniques but also has a fruitful sideline converting turntables into zoetropes. The brains behind the Paper Cinema, Nic Rawling was an illustrator who wanted to make his pictures move. Rather than go into straight animation he hit on an ingenious performance technique using a pile of cut-outs and an onstage camera.
With the traditional TV-commissioning path increasingly rocky and numerous options for distribution on offer, our documentary-makers now come from all kinds of places. A prime example is Kieran Evans, who has gone from art-school to Spielberg’s animation company to advertising and music videos while developing his craft in non-fiction. He’ll be talking to Hussain Currimbhoy (Sheffield Doc/Fest) about his new film Vashti Bunyan: From Here to Before. We’ve also just confirmed that Jeanie Finlay, director of Goth Cruise, will be able to make it. Based in Nottingham, Jeanie started out in visual arts and went on to make the acclaimed BBC doc Teenland.
A day of discussions and demos where artists and filmmakers explore creative and practical issues around their work.