I’m going to say it up front – I flipping love whales – large but gentle, mammals like us and even got their own language. So anything that can help get the humans off their backs is good with me.
Quite apart from that – I found this film very arresting – the tone of it is so jolly and in the style of a 1940’s news reel, but the message is so stark. At first you think it’s going to say something positive but by the end I felt a bit queasy – but I guess that’s the point. It’s too easy for informational films to bang on about their topic until you are thoroughly de-sensitised.
It was written and directed by Jez Lysaght for Whale and Dolphin Conservation (WDC) to try and put pressure on the Icelandic government to stop a local company, Hvalur, from killing the endangered Fin Whale. I had a quick chat with him to find out a bit more about how he came up with the concept….
“Well the first thing I want to say is how indebted I am to Steve Turner for doing such an amazing job with the animation and the styling of this piece. I had worked with this client before and this time they pretty much gave me carte blanche to do what I wanted. I know that it had to stand out so in order to make a difference so I came up with the idea of starting with a controversial headline like “killing whales is environmentally friendly”. From there I thought of how that could be delivered by a news reader of some sort which progressed to a Pathe news reel style – inspired from a similar scene in the Pixar film “Up”.
“When I went to Steve with the brief I told him my ideas and said I wanted a 2D version of what you might get in a 3D environment, which sounds very odd when you say it, but he obviously understood what I meant! He then came up with this great mix of 2D & 3D animation styles – part drawn, part collage and part photo-realistic.”
Steve used After effects and Cinema 4D to create this work – I had a quick word with him about this and he said: “C4D offers a fantastic toolset, multi pass rendering and After Effects integration, which is perfect for compositing a 2D/3D project such as this with quite a lengthy animation, mixed media and with a fast turn around…”
Personally I was left wondering how animators and motion designers view the difference between C4D and Maya - does anyone have a view on this…?
Click here to go to a version of the film that does add your name to the petition, which I hope you will. Credits: director & script - Jez Lysaght voice – Lewis MacLeod, audio recording and sound design by Simon at Offset, design and animation Steve Turner at MadeBySteve