LIVING & DYING WELL
Passing Conversations is an animation that brings to life everyday inanimate objects going through various stages of dying; it is shown in a light-hearted and playful manner to encourage a more positive approach to a somewhat taboo subject. I was honoured that this animation won the NHS England Award in the RSA Student Design Awards 2018/19, for the brief Living and Dying Well, sponsored by NHS England.
CASTING THE CHARACTERS
My aim was to find a way to overcome the negative connotations associated to death and engage an audience in a difficult subject. In order for the animation to be accessible to a broad target audience I felt that using simpler visuals made the underlying message easier to process when presented in a more approachable, positive light. In addition, I wanted the storyline to be applicable to everyone, without excluding any cultures, genders, or age groups.
Therefore, I approached the idea of animating objects by personifying them. My idea was to illustrate an array of objects ‘experiencing’ death or serious illnesses in alternative ways. I decided against using human characters to approach the animation from a new perspective, and using neutral objects instead of human figures can be less intimidating for viewers.
After selecting the most appropriate objects from my brainstorming session, I organised them into a storyboard to be coherent with the given narration by drawing out each of the scenes into a storyboard. I went with a bright colour palette to bring light to such a dark subject. I then overlaid different textures throughout to add more depth to the feel of the animation and used textured brushes to draw the illustrations to avoid a flat appearance. I also added as much emotion as I could within their expressions to make them more relatable and expressive.