"Via"

"Via" is my debut as a Director. Directed and created, as much as possible, by my myself at Blue Zoo Animation Studios, Via has gone on now to win several awards and be selected for many festivals, as well as being featured in a few magazines. Released to the public in January 2018, Via premiered at MPC London on the 23rd of November 2017.

Synopsis: A short animated film that tells the journey of life through the use of epic, beautiful environments and meaningful character animation. It shows how we should open our eyes to the good things that happen every day, to the experiences we share with the people we love, and the silver linings and the lessons to be learnt in even the lowest times.

Via started as a simple idea for a man to transition through changing environments, optimising the use of epic landscapes and tiny characters - this was to play to my strengths in environment art. Regardless to the characters size, and the fact they don't have faces, I wanted to tell a story that was emotive and relatable ... this meant that eventually, as the story developed, we added more characters to create this strong direction for the story, to add emotion and to show the importance of relationships in the man's life. I loved directing the animation to make sure that the acting told the story we wanted to tell but remained subtle. My colleagues at Blue Zoo created, rigged and animated the 3D characters. Colour, atmosphere and epic scale played a part in carrying the story and you can read more about that in the links below.

The poem is written by Rachel Cladingbowl, and I found it a few months into production when the story arc was already decided. It really was a moment of fate when the poem perfectly fit what I was trying to say and show.

Via took 18 months to complete as it was a project I would complete in my spare moments between client work. The long timescale was great in the end as it allowed the story to breathe as I'd leave the project for sometimes weeks or months at a time before returning to it with fresh ideas and a new perspective. As I aimed to do as much of the work on the film myself I learnt a lot, challenging myself to learn new skills along the way. The feedback so far has been incredible and I'm honestly astounded! 

To learn more about the making of see the links below!

Further Links

Blue Zoo Interview & Making Of

Blue Zoo Blog Post

Skwigly Interview

Little Black Book

Animation World Network