I feel very excited to announce that “I Am From” an animation I created, commissioned by Sky Arts and funded by Art 50, is showing at the Barbican as part of the OpenFest: Art 50
“I Am From” is an animated version of a poem written by 15 year old Annie, who lives in Londonderry, and gives a little insight into her experience of the world. I was able to have a Skype chat with Annie and her teacher before I started the animation process and (in true Sojo style) I was able to ask for some kids drawings to pop into the film. Annie’s little sister, Beth, did a fantastic job and, hey presto, we have a lovely little collaborative film.
This project was created to explore the notion of British identity in the wake of Brexit.
What a brilliant morning of Sojo workshops for little ones at Ranby House in Worksop!
We read ‘The Grumpy Hamster’, tried a spot of yoga, stuffed ourselves with imaginary strawberries and helped out a baby polar by listening to him talk about his feelings and then made our own grumpy hamsters to take home.
I asked all the kids to think about what has made their hamster feel cross today. One little boy said his hamster was feeling cross because his big brother hamster told him to get out of his room. Boy, do we know how horrible that feels!
I also asked who they have in their lives that makes them feel better when they feel cross or sad. One little girl calmly replied “Jesus.” It turns out her father is a priest, so it all makes perfect sense.
All of the kids were a delight and the atmosphere at Ranby House was fabulous. Lovely sofas for big people and soft carpet for me and my little buddies, plus a great area for us to get super messy while we chatted away and made our grumpy hamsters. It was lovely to chat to some of the lovely Ranby House staff too.
I wrote this as a little personal experiment on spontaneous storytelling. It was completely improvised. I used my iPhone voice recorder and spoke it line by line, whilst getting my niece to repeat each line as I dreamt it up so that I would have the audio for an animation ready to go.
I knew, once we’d finished recording, we’d found ourselves a real gem! A simple and hilarious story, focusing on what we can do when we are fed up with feeling angry.