Young Designers 2011

Animation Film Design | GDPD
Dhiman Sengupta
Self Sponsered
2D animation
Black and white
My diploma film attempts to tell a simple story in a visually interesting and dynamic manner. The story draws from my childhood experiences in a small town in Madhya Pradesh. Since there was only one school-bus, half the kids were stuck at school till evening while the bus would drop off the rest at their homes. The unattended school playground, which had turned into a huge grassfield, was where the kids would play games. This very field serves as the film’s backdrop.

A boy finds a special torch while playing hide-and-seek with his friends. The torch, when switched on, emits black light. The fluid rays have a mind of their own. They pass through opaque objects and expose what cannot be seen by the naked eye. The story is about the boy’s adventures as he ties to ‘seek’ his friends using the torch and thus also sees the unseen.

Since the original field does not exist anymore, I visited similar locations to understand the space and how my character would interact with it. Different ambient sounds (including those of birds and crickets) were recorded which I later used to create the film’s soundtrack.
One of the biggest challenges I faced was to assign a property to the torch. There were infinite possibilities, which made the structuring of the storyboard a tedious process. I painted my backgrounds in ink, for the fluidity of the medium went well with the black rays of the torch. I created various textures with ink-washes and blots, composed them together using Photoshop and added details. The character was animated by hand on the light box and inked later.
From ideation to execution, I went through different stages of understanding the technicalities of film-making. I learnt a lot from the planning and labour that went into making this film.
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