Freelance film-maker and animator Iona Fabian last week demonstrated her work with schools and young people to the monthly meeting of the Digital Creatives Oxford group. Iona, who has been freelancing for 13 years, showed the group of media professionals online video animations created by young pupils of her workshops in Oxfordshire schools using Adobe Premiere Elements and Windows Moviemaker. The many examples of short clips of less than a minute were complemented by more complex animations lasting up to 10 minutes.
Iona pointed out that the young animators use many different materials to create their films, from Wallace and Grommet style plasticine to torn coloured paper, small models to crumpled tissue paper. Working methodically in groups of up to 5 around a camera the children have over many hours brought these materials to life, adding a mixture of music, sound effects, scripts and commentaries to give the animations an extra dimension.
“The students learn not only how to be patient and methodical, they develop team working and problem solving skills as well” said Iona. “Animation skills are becoming increasingly popular with parents now asking for workshops in order to keep pace and to be as creative and absorbed as their children”.
Finally during the evening’s talk and demonstration Iona screened a 10 minute animation created at John Watson School. This was the result of a multi-group activity across the school. One team of young people created the animation whilst another team wrote poetry to accompany the film. A group of young musicians in the schools teamed up to put the poetry to music and the school choir recoded the song as the backing sound track for the animation. “A marvellous experience of team working and creativity” said Iona.
Future meetings of the Digital Creatives Oxford group
March 17th After Effects Expressions with film maker Dariusz Dziala
April 21st Oxford professional photographer Gary Ombler
May 19th Commercial photographer, Mark Sommerville
June 16th – “Adventures in Meat Space”
July 21st Famous animators, Brothers McLeod