'Animation and Public Engagement'

Symposium November 18th 2014, Bradford

Invitation | Programme | Location


Paper 1: ‘Developing Good Citizen Animators’
Paper 2: ‘Animation and informative films: two early ‘digital’ films’.

Panel 1: 'Animation Therapy; an animated process to enhance social wellbeing”
Paper 3: ‘RuMAD2: A Methodology for Participant Led Visual Storytelling in a Therapeutic Environment’.
Paper 4: ‘Loved and Lost: Animation as expression and agency for a group of adults with learning disability’.
Paper 5: ‘Reception Engagement in Animation’

Paper 6: ‘Plato Has Stolen my Key Frame!’
Paper 7: ‘Space, Horizons and 3-D Computer Generated Animation’
Paper 8: ‘From Malevich’s square to Fischinger to abstract animation in the digital age’

Panel 2: ‘What’s Up Kid? Designing an Animated Tool with Children to measure how they feel.’
Paper 9:
‘Using animation to learn about children’s health and what matters to them’
Paper 10: ‘Collaborating with children to develop the CHILDSPLA App’.
Paper 11: ‘Developing character animation for CHILDSPLA’

Paper 12: ‘Plastic Fantastic: The Developing Role of 3D Printing in Character Animation Production’
Paper 13: ‘The perks of not being a wallflower: Inconspicuous animation and documentary’
Paper 14: 'The Elephant in the Room - animation and the use of anthropomorphic imagery'

Paper 1: ‘Developing Good Citizen Animators’

Substance use and misuse as a strategy for animation through community participation and public engagement.
Steven Heller (2003) states that ‘every good citizen must understand that his or her respective actions will have reactions’. This paper will seek to promote a philosophy whereby students are the instigators for change through a symbiotic approach to animation for public engagement, where social science is embedded within the design process. As animators we must understand that the reactions to our animation must be aligned with our intentions and that these intentions are in harmony with the social implications of our communication. Effective animation can nurture and inspire individuals and communities to act, both consciously and subconsciously, improving conditions for society. We therefore have a responsibility to create animation that endeavours to improve human well-being.

In this paper, Malcolm and Campbell discuss DJCAD’s ‘Interdisciplinary Project’, involving mixed groups of second year students in Animation, Graphic Design and Illustration working together to create short animated public engagement films on the subject of Substance Use and Misuse. The films will be shown as part of a suite of art projects designed to engage the local community with the ISAM International Congress taking part in Dundee in October 2015.
Davies (1997) suggests that ‘the drug issue usually attracts our attention through media presentations which seek to reduce the issue to a single, instantly comprehensible message but in the process an inaccurate and largely false impression.’ We therefore encouraged the students to engage with local community organisations and individuals suffering from substance misuse, in order to equip them with first-hand information of the issues on which to base their ideas for the animations, becoming aware that their designs can have consequences for those individuals and the wider community.
This paper will highlight the challenges associated with participatory design methods when working with such a complex subject, whilst at the same time examining the way in which it can enhance the student’s learning experience. It reinforces too that animation graduates can be Good Citizen Animators, equipped with a new set of skills to question and critically examine their own creative practice through an ethical design intention.

Booth Davies, J. 1997 (2nd Ed) The Myth of Addiction. Harwood Academic Publishers, Amsterdam. Heller, S. Vienne, V. (2003) Citizen Designer: perspectives on design responsibility. Allworth Press, New York.

Sharon Campbell (Bio): s.l.campbell@dundee.ac.uk
Sharon Campbell is Course Director of the undergraduate animation programme at the Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design,University of Dundee, and link co­ordinator with the Irish School of Animation at Ballyfermot College, Dublin. She has published work on performance drawing and is undertaking research on animation for theatre, recently animating sequences for the critically acclaimed production, 'Shape of a Girl'. She is currently working on projects about Norman McLaren and dramatized drawing.
Jacquelyn Malcolm (Bio): j.y.malcolm@dundee.ac.uk
Jackie Malcolm has over 29 years professional experience working as a Graphic Designer and runs her own successful design consultancy Arc Visual Communications Ltd.
Jackie has been teaching within DJCAD, University of Dundee, since 1998, and has taught modules within Communication Design as well as developing new modules to enhance the curriculum. Jackie brings a social focus to the projects she delivers ensuring communication designers are aware of the intention and impact their design can have on society. Jackie also delivers a module, Design Values, Issues & Ethics, that uses Biophilia and Biomimicry as tools for design, to an interdisciplinary group of students covering most design disciplines.
Jackie is also research assistant for a large NESTA funded project called ArtsAPI.
ArtsAPI is a major collaborative R&D project led by FutureEverything, the University of Dundee and Swirrl. The project will develop a new web application for arts organisations designed to show the value and impact generated through their networks. It will aggregate, analyse and present their data, helping the arts sector to create new and refined business models and propositions.

Paper 2:
‘Animation and informative films: two early ‘digital’ films.’

During the 1960’s two of the most influential teams of visual communicators of that time produced short information films on digital technology for some of the major competing companies in the field. Both “La memoria del futuro“ (The memory of the future) produced in 1960 for Olivetti by a team lead by Italy’s graphic designer Giovanni Pintori and Academy Award nominated animator Giulio Gianini, and “A Computer Glossary”, produced eight years later for IBM by the celebrated Eames Office, took great advantage of the combined powers of graphics and animation to make the abstract workings of computer processing accessible.

Either on its own, or combined with footage from the 'real world', animated sequences have proved to be a very effective way to make complex contents easier to grasp for a wide audience, enabling communicators and directors to create very articulated narrative structures that offer degrees of conceptual versatility unthinkable in the domain of realistic documentary. Through the comparison and analysis of the two short Olivetti and IBM films, this paper to discuss the elements that make the language of animation an ideal tool to make complex and abstract things more understandable, without losing its ability to engage and entertain its public, opening the way for a very promising season of informative animation.

Nicolò Ceccarelli (Bio): ceccarelli@uniss.it
Nicolò Ceccarelli is Associate Professor in Industrial Design at the Alghero School of Architecture (University of Sassari). He holds a Degree in Architecture from the Milan's Polytechnic. Always keeping at the center of his interest the relationship between design and digital media, over the last years he has developed work on digital modeling and rendering, visual prototyping, virtual reality, interactive multimedia, cultural heritage. He has taught design and computer graphics in several universities (Milano, Ferrara, Alghero). More recently he focused his research on the language of animation.
Nicolò Ceccarelli currently leads the AnimazioneDesign research laboratory, and has created the AniMatti Summer School and the informAnimation project. In October 2013 Nicolò Ceccarelli organized the first edition of the design conference 2CO_COmmunicating COmplexity, attracting to Alghero an international gathering of scholars, educators, students and professionals seeking to explore ways to make complex contents accessible through design.

Panel 1: ‘Animation Therapy; an animated process to enhance social wellbeing”.

The use of Animation and its process within health, healing, education, therapy, criminology and social science is expanding in an eclectic mix of exploratory and documented research. As a participator, facilitator of the process or an audience member of the outcome, this panel will discuss how the combination of creating art that moves and speaks can encourage cognitive, physical and emotional development and increase awareness of the self and others.

The panel will

• Examine the use of the animation process whilst working with vulnerable, marginalized or ‘hard to reach’ individuals and communities.

• Discuss the use of two new models embedded into the animation process whilst working within a participatory environment; The Hearts Model (Hani, M) and RuMAD2 (Are you Making A Difference Too?) (Drainville, Walker, H)

• Explore the theme of loss and bereavement within a group of adults with learning disabilities and with children who are diagnosed on the autistic spectrum and suffered parental loss.

To summarize, the panel, informed by their research, will discuss the distinctive role of animation providing insight into and offering possible solutions to current world wide community issues.
Chair: Melanie Hani , Healing Education Animation Research Therapy (HEART) melaniejhani@gmail.com

Paper 3: ‘RuMAD2: A Methodology for Participant Led Visual Storytelling in a Therapeutic Environment’.

This paper looks at the development of the RuMAD2 process (Are you Making A Difference Too?) (Drainville, E, Walker, H) as part of a methodology for Animation Therapy, in the context of working with children who have recently been bereaved.
The model is influenced by Seligman’s Positive Psychology, Boyatsis and Whitmore Coaching cycles and Shelle Rose Charvet language and behavior profiles and was utilised in the production of animation films and evidenced in the anonymity that animation affords the participant.
Focusing on building aspiration, optimism, and resilience RuMAD2 tool was used to reach children with complex behavioral patterns and learning difficulties who had recently been bereaved. It enabled the facilitator to use a particular language and behavior to inspire a positive response from each participant.
In this particular case I applied the RuMAD process for the first time within the animation context. Prior to this it had been piloted with successful outcomes, in a school in England. The school had a high level of children with specific behavioral problems. By adapting this trialed process, this paper discusses the overall approach and the documented results.

Elaine Drainville (Bio): elaine.drainville@sunderland.ac.uk
Elaine Drainville is a Senior Lecturer in Digital Film Production, University of Sunderland. She has worked in the UK Broadcast Film and TV Industry for over 25 years; initially documenting the Miners’ Strike and the Women’s Peace Camp at Greenham Common. She is a board member of HEART ((Healing Education Animation Research Therapy) and co-founder of RuMAD2 (Are You Making A Difference Too). Her research focuses on developing a methodology that promotes Aspiration, Resilience and Optimism in participant led visual storytelling. This work began with women and girls in the Al Aroub refugee camp, West Bank, Palestinian Territories. In collaboration, she began developing the RuMAD2 process specifically to promote child-led learning with under achieving pupils in deprived areas. Through HEART Elaine collaborated with Barnardos and NHS to work with children who are bereaved.

Paper 4:
‘Loved and Lost: Animation as expression and agency for a group of adults with learning disability’.

This paper relates to an exploration of loss via the medium of animation with members of Voice (a self-advocacy group for adults with learning disabilities). The aim was to define loss for the group members and evaluate whether participating in the animation process can change this perception and facilitate wellbeing. The study uses a general inductive methodology, which is ethnographic.

The study has three main objectives:

• Identify a shared understanding of the phenomena of loss.

• Assess whether by exploring loss through the production of an animated film changes the participants.

• Evaluate the potential for agency that the completed animation film offers the participants and whether this affects their perception of loss.

The depth of social and political oppression felt by people with learning disabilities soon becomes evident (Sinason 1992). Not only do they often find themselves excluded from the rituals surrounding death (Blackman 3003) but often their lack of communication skills mean that their emotional distress goes unrecognized. In view of the wide variation in the perceptions of and communication styles of the group members, the potential of visual and art-based methods (Read 2007) in offering a means to communicate with others and express emotions associated with loss is key to the study. In this context, the study seeks to evaluate the unique role of animation as a healing methodology.

Yvonne Eckersley (Bio): y.eckersley@glyndwr.ac.uk
Yvonne is a Senior Lecturer in Animation at Glyndwr University and her films have been screened widely at animation festivals, including Annecy International Animation Festival, the London Film Festival, Sidney Animation Festival and Ottawa International Animation Festival. After working in London as a key animator, Yvonne founded Jackdaw Media with two other animators. The company specialised in working with schools, colleges and special interest groups to produce animations. In 1998 Yvonne gained a full-time post at Glyndwr University. Yvonne’s personal animation is almost always autobiographical and her film, ‘Brush the teddy’s toes’, about her son’s developmental disability was commissioned by S4C. Having experienced first-hand the potential animation has to provide therapeutic benefits, her research has continued with this theme.

Paper 5: ‘Reception Engagement in Animation’.

Whilst embedding drawing within participatory animation practice, I have developed methods of drawing and their links with reception theory.
This paper will discuss the methods utilised within animation drawing projects including the public and how it connects with reception theory. It will analyse a broad spectrum of abilities, where distinctly different needs and approaches to drawing for animation connect, some, with situations where the creative process can become a positive element that encourages development. It will review the practice of drawing within animation and propose strategies, whilst the process is constantly evolving - in the context of reception theory - at the time of creativity. The aim is to ensure an inclusive broad culture where each individuals’ creativity is uniquely suited to explore drawing for movement.
I will map the use of drawing as a process that can through traditional and new media be a way of encouraging thought and creative paths that are useful in workshops from the Big Draw and private Barnardos projects where the aim is to resolve control where there was an imbalance, repair loss through bereavement and in a more diverse special groups dealing with the autistic spectrum. The main objective is the way these strategies connect and develop with reference to reception theory thereby enabling a set of refined methods to be defined and used.

John Tyrrell (Bio): john.tyrrell@sunderland.ac.uk
John is the founder of The Student Drawing Society and senior lecturer at the University of Sunderland. He is a member of HEART (Healing Education Animation Research Therapy). This year many projects and activities are run with these venues registered with the Big Draw. His work includes research into drawing, participatory animation methods when working with people diagnosed on the Autistic Spectrum and teaches across a wide set of disciplines; figurative sculpture, architectural design, model making, illustration, Animation, spatial design. John has worked as an industrial sculptor and as an architectural designer. He was commissioned, to write a book on Design and has given papers about his work at such places as The Design History Conference at The V&A/RCA. He has connected with the cutting edge Autism Unit which was then at the University of Sunderland, headed by Paul Shattock (President Elect. of the world Autism organisation).

Paper 6: ‘Plato Has Stolen My Key Frame!”

For some time now we have been aware that there is a natural affinity with philosophy and moving images. Thus far it seems to be a scenario where one may benefit from the companionship of the other. Well how may this vis-à-vis help our understanding of a public engaging with animation? For if we are to truly consider this relationship in a serious manner then we may gain some insight into the topic of this symposium's discussion.

In light of this connection one will start my presentation with the use of the Polish filmmaker Zbigniew Rybczyński's, Tango (1980) (1) . To truly define a definition for animation, therefore immediately describing the essence of what any public will actually be engaging with. So this gesture/essence of animation is that it was and still is the creation of the illusion of movement. In the same way in the articulation or reading of philosophy: as what we do when we are struggling to find the right question to ask. We can see an immediate similarity here, one of the core and longest standing philosophical stalwarts, which is shared with animation is the notion of 'causality'.

To highlight this opinion Tango will be discussed in light of Plato's 'Third Man Argument', and his notion of Forms. Moreover drawing on other humorous event's in philosophy I will finish using a fabricated fictional discussion between Pluto the pup, Walt Disney's puppy, and the philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein. With particular focus on Wittgenstein asking Pluto one of his questions: can a dog have hope? Pluto potentially finishes by representing my conclusion that for the public to continue to have an increased engagement with animation, we have at first to develop an increased awareness of it's many forms, in cinema, theatre (2), and education.

A child has much to learn before it can pretend. (A dog cannot be a hypocrite, but neither can he be sincere.) (3)

(1)Ed: Greg Hilty & Alona Pardo, Watch Me Move The Animation Show, Barbican, Merrel, p.184, (2011)
(2) Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Letter to D’Alembert on the Theatre (Lettre a M. d’Alembert sur les Spectacles) (1758)
(3) Ludwig Wittgenstein, Philosophical Investigations, Blackwell, Oxford, p.229, (1967)

Paul Harrison (Bio): paulharrison.artist@gmail.com
Paul Harrison was born in 1989 in Beverley, United Kingdom he studied Fine Art at Sheffield Hallam University graduating in 2011. Where his ambition to think by making animation and during this process have his thinking animated first started. He finds himself in a consistent state of bewilderment and wonderment toward reality, a perpetuating scenario with no desire for alteration. Most of his practice is concerned with the difficulties of developing understanding, which to the untrained eye may seem a simple matter; surely this just depends on how much you know?
He is a core member of the organism F/O/R/C/E Lectures (Free. Online. Radically. Collected. Education) this creature is what he works on most of the time. Recent exhibitions and screenings include: Under New Management, New Brunswick & Ontario, Canada (2014). Prism 16, Millennium Galleries, Sheffield, UK (2014). Beacons Art Festival, Screening(as F/O/R/C/E), Skipton, UK, (2014). Winter Screening Programme, The Projects: Testing Grounds, Melbourne, AUS (2014), and
has just been shortlisted for the 6th Screengrab International Media Art Award, Queensland, AUS (2014).

Paper 7: ‘Space, Horizons and 3-­D Computer Generated Animation’.

Much 3-D computer generated animation adopts a Euclidean, perspective system of space to deliver a representation of our World. Yet 3-D CGI also embodies within it parallel subjective spatial systems, such as colour, distortion of form and manipulations of horizons, that can assist in providing alternative approaches to forming visual space.

Through examples of practical animation research, this paper explores the application of alternative spatial systems in relation to our understanding 3-D CGI space and proposes that true perceptual (visual) space derives from hybrid spatial codification systems, originating from and defined by binocular human vision and physical experience; opposing a culturally determined reliance on metric based single-point perspective.

To discuss these ideas the work draws on a potential disparity in our cognitive system for understanding geometric space and the objects within it as outlined by Heelan, Luneburg and Heidegger and takes into account and conflates aspects of space perception and phenomenological models where there is a juncture between philosophy, science and animation and an emphasis on a precognitive processes.

The work also introduces relationships between animation, the viewer and a pre- recognition of spatial cues, i.e. a reliance on given geometric clues and dependence on the role of zones to indicate spatial depth to form “Gestalt-­type relationships between foreground and background, near zone and distant zone, which are functions of the purpose of perception” (Heelan, 1983, p.57). Within this non- Euclidean visual space (that incorporates and integrates opposing metric, physical, perceptual and imagined variations of space and the objects within in it), it is the role of the horizon that takes a central place in the forming of a locational understanding of the space before us.

Within this context the paper introduces the notion of space within CGI’s apparent weightless and boundless environment where the camera has free reign to pursue its potential to investigate and disrupt our conventional understanding of space and the horizons within its geography.

Alex Jukes (Bio): Jukesa@edgehill.ac.uk
Alex Jukes is a Senior Lecturer and Programme Leader for BA Animation within the Department of Media.
Alex’s educational and professional background spans the fields of animation, film and TV production, fine art and interactive media. Before working within an academic environment he worked within the media industry as a practitioner across a number of fields including 3-D CGI modelling, animation, graphics for television and interactive digital media. In the past he has produced graphic animation sequences for Zenith North and Tyne Tees Television.
Alex’s academic research relates to 3-D CGI animation where he is investigating visual perception and the effects of technology on our understanding of space. Alex has delivered academic papers nationally and internationally relating to this subject and he has produced and presented animations, exhibitions and interactive installation works that explore this theme via practice as research. Alex is currently a candidate for a PhD by practice at the Royal College of Art within the Department of Animation.

Paper 8: ‘From Malevich’s square to Fischinger to abstract animation in the digital age’.

The Genre of abstract animation is investigated from a practice-based perspective by tracing the theme o Malevich’s abstract square from painting to digital animation in the contemporary context.

Beginning with the avant-garde artist Malevish’s paintings ’White on White’ and ‘Black Square’ as ultimate statements on non-representational form that defines the term ‘abstract’ in art, the basic image of the (Malevich) square is traceable through to the cinematic moving-image. The square reappears in colourful movement and rhythm in the early abstract animation films by pioneering artist-filmmaker Oskar Fischinger. The Square is reiterated, in direct reference to Malevich, in contemporary abstract animations.

From its early beginnings abstraction in animation ran parallel to abstraction in the visual arts, yet the unique form of abstract animation has continued consistently to the present day alongside other forms of animation. Reflecting the blurred boundaries between painting and animation, as in Fischinger’s pioneering work, abstract animation has persisted throughout the developments of animation processes, techniques and technologies, utilising film-based as well as current digital technologies. Contemporary auteur, abstract animation examples that make direct reference to the Malevich square, in this discussion include ‘Nemumel’ (2014, Sawako, Japan), ‘Black Rectanle’ (2013, Rhyane Vermette, USA) and ‘Interior’ by the author ( 2013, Sabrina Schmid, UK). Through the particular imagery, concepts and processes, these abstract animations reassert or revisit some of the ‘purist’ views on animation where the fundamental elements of animation are seen as composed purely of basic shapes, forms, colours, rhythm, timing and movement, synchronised to sound, to evoke an aesthetic experience in the viewer.

Further important components within this discourse are the expanding platforms for the screening and exhibition of abstract animation, namely specialised abstract festivals, festivals including focused abstract programs, international touring programs and a growing resource o abstract animation available through online archives and collections.

Sabrina Schmid (Bio): s.u.schmid@tees.ac.uk
Originally Sabrina practiced fine art painting which combined with an interest in the cinematic moving-image led her to work in animation. As a practicing animator since 1986 she has focused on animation as an art form and creative expression, a medium allowing for experimentation and innovation. Her current research interests are in practice-based animation to investigate animation as a diverse and creative art form through computer animation. Her recent short animations explore the potential of the abstract form in animation using digital technology. The work has achieved international recognition through recent film screenings and awards at competitive international festivals. Animations screened internationally at the Seoul International Cartoon and Animation Festival 2014 ( South Korea), Melbourne International Animation Festival 2014 ( Australia), Punto Y Raya Festival 2014 Reykjavik,( Iceland), in USA at the Los Angeles International Underground Film Festival 2013, Women’s Independent Film Festival 2013, California International Shorts 2013 and in Spain at the Punto Y Raya Festivals 2011 and 2009.

URL: http://www.tees.ac.uk/sections/research/design_culture_arts/staff_profile_details. cfm?staffprofileid=U0018445

Panel 2: ‘What’s Up Kid? Designing an Animated Tool with Children to measure how they feel.’

This panel/ group of papers will discuss an innovative collaboration between health and animation professionals to explore how animation can be applied to collecting health state preferences from children. The papers will present points of view from a health economist, a psychologist and an animator.

Because of the many challenges relating to measurement of health status in children (e.g. Differences in cognitive ability and in the dimensions of health between different age groups) the assessment of health status represents a long-neglected subject and little has been done to develop child-friendly measures. Existing studies conducted among children have valued health status indirectly through teachers, parents and medical experts (Ravens-Sieberer et al. 2006). There is mounting evidence of the importance of obtaining self-rated health status measurements. Theussein et al. (1998) suggest that parents tend to underestimate the emotional impact of health status problems of their children.

This panel is made up of team members exploring the hypothesis that health status information can be directly collected from children as young as 4 years old using animated characters, in part because it may require lower language and literacy competencies than other methods. By involving children in the process, this project aims to make an interactive tool that can more accurately gather the opinions of children and engage them in analysis of their wellbeing and treatment.
CHILDSPLA (Children’s health state preferences learnt from animation) is a collaboration between the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM), Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH) and the Royal College of Art (RCA), London .

PI. John Cairns, Professor of Health Economics LSHTM
Neus Abrines­Jaume, Lecturer in Clinical Psychology LSHTM
Dr Jo Wray, Health Psychologist, Critical Care and Cardiorespiratory Division, GOSH
Dr Kate Brown, Cardiorespiratory Division GOSH
Matt Abbiss, Film-maker and Programme Tutor RCA
Joan Ashworth, Professor of Animation RCA

Chair: Joan Ashworth, Royal College of Art. joan.ashworth@rca.ac.uk

Paper 9: ‘Using animation to learn about children’s health and what matters to them’

All countries face tough choices regarding healthcare because of limited budgets. Economics can help inform these decisions by assessing the health benefits produced relative to the resources used. A key question is how can these health benefits be assessed. The tools we have available have been developed with respect to adults and children have been largely excluded. CHILDSPLA has two main objectives: (1) to provide a tool to enable health state information to be collected directly from children, and (2) to provide a means of establishing the relative importance of different aspects of their health to the children themselves. Animation provides a means of meeting these two objectives by making significantly fewer demands on children than traditional textual methods. This research demonstrates the scope for bringing children into the process of choosing what care should be provided for them.

John Cairns (Bio): John.Cairns@lshtm.ac.uk
John is a Health Psychologist in the Centre for Nursing and Allied Health Research and Evidence Based Practice.
John Cairns is Professor of Health Economics at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. He has over ten years of experience as a member of the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE) technology appraisal committee, which makes decisions on which health technologies the NHS in England should adopt. He has over thirty years experience using economics to understand health and healthcare. His main research interests have been the methods by which preferences over health states can be elicited and how to assess the cost- effectiveness of different ways of providing healthcare.

Paper 10: ‘Collaborating with children to develop the CHILDSPLA App’

UK health and social policy advocates active involvement of children in research, service development and decision-making and this is increasingly seen worldwide. However there are ethical and methodological issues related to these activities, thus new approaches and methods for the involvement of children in child-centred research are being developed (Gilchrist, 2013). To develop the CHILDSPLA app, a clinical psychologist and an animation filmmaker worked with healthy and unhealthy children aged from 4 to 14, following an iterative process. The aim of this paper is to explain the methods that were used to involve children in the project, and also to share challenges and benefits of that process: how to make sure children are informed enough before participating, how to allow them to decide if they want to participate, how to encourage them to help in the design of the character and how to use their feedback to fine tune the animations. As a result of involving children from the very beginning, the new tool was created for and with them, ensuring that the final output would best meet their needs.

Neus Abrines (Bio): Neus.Abrines-Jaume@lshtm.ac.uk
Neus Abrines is a Clinical Lecturer in Psychology at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (LSHTM). She has a long experience working with children, both in research and clinical contexts. During the last years she has developed a strong interest in involving children, young people and families in all the decisions that are made about their health. She believes that encouraging children and young people participation does make them feel empowered and improves their recovery process. She has worked in several projects developing and using child friendly tools and accessible information to facilitate the process of involving children and young people in research and in decisions related to their health.

Paper 11: ‘Developing character animation for CHILDSPLA’.

To develop the CHILDSPLA app it has been necessary to produce animation that communicates clearly with our target audience. The character and animation for this project has been produced in collaboration with a group of sick and healthy children who guided the process with their observations at various stages. The
frequent team meetings as well as the school visits generated a great deal of discussion about the requirements of the animation; which should be more important, that the animation should engage or be totally effective at the risk of being less engaging? What exactly is the best sequence of images to represent level 4 of inability to sleep? When the character is in pain, where should the pain be located in the body? The design solutions came through trial and error, a close adherence to the idea that less is more and walking a line between exaggerated cartoon animation and an empathetic, naturalistic performance from our drawn character. This innovative collaboration with Gt Ormond St Hospital, the London School of Hygiene and the Royal College of Art has been challenging and demanding.

Matt Abbiss (Bio): Matthew.abbiss@btinternet.com
Matt Abbiss graduated from Edinburgh College of Art in 1999 and the Royal College of Art in 2004. He has worked as an animator and animation director over that time, making commercials and short films while also working as an educator in various European Universities. He is currently lecturing mainly at the Royal College of Art and Middlesex University and continues to produce short pieces of animation. He is interested particularly in the area between abstraction and representation, humour and melancholy.

Paper 12: ‘Plastic Fantastic: The Developing Role of 3D Printing in Character Animation Production.’

The proliferation of digital technology in the production of character animation can be increasingly witnessed from feature film through to independent production. The advent, adoption and assimilation of particular tools, technologies and processes have given creators of animation greater possibilities to educate, entertain and inform audiences. From an awareness of the visual and aural possibilities of transforming scriptwriting into mesmerizing storytelling, through increased access to developing technology to ever-greater expectations for visual dexterity and mastery from audiences, has demanded that more emphasis be given to the overall production values of animated productions on screen. Whilst a myriad of tools are at the disposal in the post-production process, and whilst there is undeniably a greater impervious emphasis on cross pollination through the animation production pipeline, much of the original work in imagining and developing opportunities to incorporate technology in character development and output still happens at in pre-production.

This paper charts some of the pioneering developments utilizing 3D printing technology in relation to feature length animation, considering the merits of using such a process against conventional alternatives by using examples drawn from independent producers and full-length feature films. The paper explores the practical implications of using rapid prototyping in an industrial context against other methods of production against factors such as budget, timescale and proximity to technology, and highlights their respective benefits and shortcomings. The paper also briefly considers the use of three-dimensional digital printing in an educational context, observing the requisite skills required for working in production and debating whether students are being sufficiently prepared for that direction of employment.

Andrew Selby (Bio): A.Selby@lboro.ac.uk
Andrew Selby is Senior Lecturer in Illustration and Animation and Associate Dean for Enterprise in the School of the Arts, English and Drama. From 2011 - 2014 he served as Head of the School of the Arts.
An internationally recognised illustrator, Andrew's work has appeared in newspapers, on billboards and on the covers of major corporate reports for nearly two decades, including campaigns for Nike, Accenture, British Gas and Eurostar. His iconic and thought-provoking illustrations have consistently been selected by 3x3: The Journal of Contemporary Illustration, Society of Illustrators’ of New York, Society of Illustrators’ of Los Angeles,American Illustration and the Association of Illustrators’ Images juried exhibitions and annuals.
Andrew’s first book, Animation in Process (London: Laurence King) was released in September 2009, exploring new boundaries of animation and asserting the notion that inter-disciplinary and cross-platform collaboration can produce resonant and thought provoking responses through a multitude of delivery formats. The book has been co-editioned by Spanish publisher Parramón. His second book, Animation (London: Laurence King) was published in May 2013 and has been co-editioned in Spanish by Blume. He is currently working on the manuscript for Character Animation, co-authored with Prof. Paul Wells.
Andrew regularly writes for the design press at home and abroad on a broad range of visual communication issues. He continues to review books, articles and papers and has both edited and contributed to juried annuals and academic journals. He has previously organised and continues to contribute to conferences on illustration, animation and graphic design internationally.

Paper 13: ‘The perks of not being a wallflower: Inconspicuous animation and documentary’

As the breadth and scope of what animation, the most plastic of arts, is asked to do expands exponentially the terms of reference to identify and describe its influence and capacity struggle to keep up. Animation is everywhere and animation is nowhere; Manovich says (1999) ‘cinema can no longer be clearly distinguished from animation’. The work of animation is often underplayed in favour of more tangible elements of the film making process, for example the privileging of ‘performance’ in performance capture, or the undervaluing of VFX artists in Hollywood.

Correspondingly when animation is used in the documentary genre its ‘truth claims’ or ‘documentary guarantee’ (Takahashi, 2011) are often grounded in the use of indexical sound rather than in the animation itself. Using aural documents as the nucleus of the film, animation is parenthetically used to illustrate and endorse the words heard in the ‘animated interview’ (Strøm 2005) model. Tom Gunning says ‘by drawing attention to a particular element of cinema risks being partial and unbalanced [but] it also has the polemical power of privileging that aspect of film’ (2007). By concentrating on the elements around animation (indexical sound) for its documentary status does not engage directly with the different way that animation transforms the documenting process, which this paper attempts to investigate.

Samantha Moore (Bio): sam@samanthamoore.co.uk 
An internationally recognized animator, educator and researcher, Moore’s practice centres on animation used in a documentary context, often collaborating across disciplines. Her PhD by practice was about using animation to document perceptual brain states and she is currently working on an Animate Projects / Wellcome Trust funded film collaborating with researchers in molecular biology at Imperial College London. She teaches at the University of Wolverhampton, specializing in story development, 2D digital animation techniques and innovative animation. Moore has lectured internationally, including at the Royal Institute of Science, Australia (2012), a keynote talk at the American Synesthesia Association conference in Canada (2013), and at the Edinburgh Science Festival (2014).

Paper 14: ‘The Elephant in the Room – animation and the use of anthropomorphic imagery’

Animation is everywhere: children’s TV, advertising, popular feature films. Animation Studies, on the other hand is a rarefied pursuit, exploring relationships to philosophy and film studies, and the histories of technical innovations. So my question is how to bring these two approaches together to allow animation to be a useful means of communicating the vital issues that effect our world today. Not an isolated academic field of examination and not purely entertainment – or perhaps both at once, and by joining the two applications, coming to understand animation as an important language of our time.
This paper will examine one aspect of animation practice: the use of animal characters and anthropomorphism as a visual language that gives a platform to a range of important modern day issues. Post-modern critique has questioned this type of storytelling for being reductionist; with the portrayal of human concerns dominant, and any contributing animals rendered invisible. (Baker, 2000; Burt, 2002; Aloi,2012) However, recent animated films have taken ecological issues into family households, and many wildlife and environmental charities now use anthropomorphic characters to attract membership and boost fundraising.
Using Environmental Aesthetics as a useful framework (Brady, 2003; Foster, in Carlson and Berleant, 2004), the role of animation will be particularly highlighted, as a medium that ‘breathes life into ’ an array of moving beings and hybrid creatures. Through an investigation of the imaginative hybrid as an expressive ‘other’ (Wells 2009, Shepard 1996, Hegel, Lacan), it will be seen that opportunities for a shared existence are explored. This taps into our primal psychological ways of responding (Winnicott, and Case); providing animation with the potential to expand our dramatic and lyrical receptiveness. This then is a key to communication, both as academic discourse and as entertainment: a fully engaging and inclusive practice for 21st century communication.

Gill Bliss (Bio): g.e.bliss@lboro.ac.uk / gillbliss4@gmail.com
Gill Bliss is a creative practitioner who works across sculpture, drawing and animation platforms. In 2000/1 she made two short animation films (‘Child’s Play’ and ‘In the Garden’), with a grant from the S4C ‘Short-shorts’ scheme for independent animators. Gill worked in the animation industry as a freelance model-maker for over 12 years, on such projects as Tales of the World and The Canterbury Tales ( Aaargh Animations 1999, 2001); ‘Chicken Run’ ( Aardman Animations , 2000); Wallace and Gromit and the Curse of the Were-Rabbit ( Aardman Animations 2005); ‘Creature Comforts’ and ‘Timmy Time’ ( Aardman Animations, 2005/7, 2009). In 2011, Gill was awarded a studentship by the School of the Arts at Loughborough University to undertake a practice-based PHD, researching anthropomorphic imagery in animation. Now in a final, write-up year, she is developing her interests in using animation to present ecological issues.

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