Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Animated Inspiration: Garra Rufa (Doctor Fish)

Normally, I highlight a lot of student films from Europe--mainly due to the quality of the films that the students are producing. However, this week we're coming back to North America with a film produced by a group of students from Ontario's own Sheridan Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning. Sheridan has long been a bastion of animation studies, churning out talented individuals who enjoy careers at top studios in both the American and Canadian film industry. With the following film, you can see why.

What I love about this film is that there is no dialog and yet the intent of the story is clear. Timothy Chan and his fellow students animated the characters in 'Doctor Fish' using a visual language of motion and expression. As you look at the body language and facial expressions, there is no mistaking what is going on in the lives (and minds) of the animated characters. As you watch the film, take note of exaggeration in the characters' motion. This is a beautiful application of the principles of animation found in most textbooks. And while it may look like comical overacting in a live-action (or motion capture) production, it works perfectly in animation.