Films by students of MA Character Animation at Central Saint Martins bring the First World War to life at the London Transport Museum
Second Year students of the course worked with archival recordings from the museum’s oral history collection to augment the exhibits in the Goodbye Piccadilly exhibition, which runs from 16th May 2014 – 8th March 2015 at the London Transport Museum in Covent Gardens. One of many exhibitions commemorating the outbreak of the dreadful events of World War 1, this show focusses on the Home Front – events in London.
The accomplished animated films combine a mixture of techniques such as hand drawing, stop motion, Cel Action, Maya, Flash and After Effects to visualise elements of the collection that exist in the form of sound recordings only. This includes an account of the origin of the song ‘It’s a Long Way to Tipperary’ and the stories of women’s suffrage during the First World War, such as the struggle of women bus conductors for equal pay. The concepts for the films were selected by museum staff from a series of pitches by the talented students, who worked together in teams of four to complete the films to a strict deadline.
Here are the final films created by students from MA Character Animation at Central Saint Martins for the London Transport Museum. Made in small teams of 3-4 people to a short deadline of two weeks, they employ a variety of digital and drawn techniques in combination – from stop motion to Flash, Photoshop, Illustrator, After Effects and Maya. Each short film is inspired by a historical poster that had been designed by an alumni from the college. The posters are shown at the end of the films. We will be having a small exhibition of the films and original posters in the Central Saint Martins Window Gallery during the month of May.
Stuck for design inspiration? Not just for trainspotters, the London Transport Museum has an extraordinary collection of over 5,000 posters in their online archive. Spanning a century of graphic design, the collection features posters inspired by Surrealism, Vorticism, Pop Art, Fauvism – indeed most of the major movements in painting during this period. Not only a visual treasure trove, it offers a fascinating insight into the lives of ordinary Londoners: how they lived and spent their leisure time, how they survived two world wars, how the city continues to stretch and grow. Here is a selection depicting London entertainment:
The West End is awakening, by Ernest Michael Dinkel, 1931
City, by Edward Bawden, 1952
Pantomimes and circuses, by Joan Beales, 1954
The City of London, by Abram Games, 1964
Take your travelcard to the pictures, by unknown artist, 1987
West End entertainments, by Donna Muir and Su Huntley, 1987
Students on the MA Character Animation course at Central Saint Martins are just starting on a new Moving Posters assignment inspired by 10 historic posters that were designed by former students or staff from the college. Their animation work will be featured alongside the original posters in an exhibition in the Window Gallery at CSM in May and will be available to download in the London Transport Museum via QR code on mobile phones by the end of March. Contact us if you would like to be invited to the Window Gallery private view on Friday May 11th in Kings Cross, London.