LIAF 2014 – a whirlwind 10 days. We even survived a power-cut, which to cut a long story short resulted in warm ice-cream cinema treats, cold scotch eggs and hand-written tickets (as scribed by the ever-dedicated Barbican box office staff)!
It’s no secret that our mission at LIAF is to screen the world’s best independent animated films and to support the animation industry. We can only fulfil this mission if you, our loyal followers continue to attend our events. So thank you all for coming along to see the incredible films that we were able to bring you during LIAF 2014. Your attendance supports us, but more importantly it supports talented filmmakers. And if you weren’t able to attend, thank you for your attention – you spread the word, you shared, liked, followed, chatted and retweeted… this is quite simply, gold.
So LIAF 2014… as well as our annual competition programmes and other regular screenings, we had some amazing guests from around the World who were incredibly generous with their time. They ran workshops, masterclasses and presentations and shared their expertise in Q&As and Retrospectives – in particular:
Andreas Hykade (Special thanks to the Goethe Institute for bringing Andreas from Germany). Andreas introduced a programme showcasing the work of Filmakademie Baden-Wuerttemberg, where he’s Professor of Animated Film. He led an inciteful masterclass How to Make an Animated Film during our Industry Event and took part in a fascinating Q&A after a Retrospective of his work. He also introduced a special programme for kids where we screened a self-curated selection of the hit children’s animated series Tom and the slice of bread with strawberry jam and honey.
Ülo Pikkov & Priit Tender also joined us from Estonia (Special thanks to The Estonian Embassy for bringing Ülo & Pritt to London and for sponsoring our annual foyer exhibition – this year celebrating Estonian animation). Ülo & Pritt introduced the UK premiere screening of Lisa Limone & Maroc Orange, took part in a Q&A after a special screening of New Estonian Animation and held a fascinating presentation on the Surrealist Roots of Estonian Animation.
Stephen Woloshen joined us all the way from Canada (Special thanks to the Quebec Government Office for supporting Stephen’s visit) and gave a lucky few the chance to make an outstanding abstract animated film in his sell-out masterclass Scratch, Crackle & Pop! He also took part in a Q&A following a rare Retrospective of his work, sharing his techniques and enlightening a very engaged audience. You can take a look at the finished Masterclass films below.
Peter Hemminger from the Quickdraw Animation Society joined us from Canada to introduce a Retrospective of QAS work in celebration of their 30th anniversary. You can read-up on our Co-Director – Malcolm Turner’s visit to QAS here.
This year we decided to shake up our Industry Event a tad, as mentioned we held an abundance of masterclasses, workshops and presentations. We also welcomed Middlesex University and Arts University Bournemouth who presented their students’ work and shared with us the merits of their Animation BAs. One of the highlights of this years’ Industry Event was our panel on How to Break into Animation for TV. On the panel were: Jamie Badminton a co-founder and Creative Director of Karrot Entertainment, Steve Smith who runs Beakus, BAFTA-nominated Bafta nominated Maria Manton Head of Production and Animation Director at Munky and Andreas Hykade. Chaired by Saint John Walker of Creative Skillset, this panel opened to a Q&A with an eager (and very large audience) and gave a rare opportunity for practical advice from professionals that really do know their stuff.
Another industry event highlight was the presence of Max Hattler, as well as judging our Best Abstract Film award (with John Piper), Max delivered a very popular masterclass entitled How to Make a Living Abstractly Animating Outside the Commercial Sphere.
We had some incredible support this year, so please bear with us while we gush a few more thank yous. The Film & Video Workshop are our long-standing partners and continue to support us in all sorts of ways through thick and thin – in particular thank you to Simon Oatley. Thanks to Toon Boom Animation for coming onboard this year with a very generous cash prize for the Best International Film.
If you haven’t had a chance to see it yet, here’s Adrienne Dowling’s wonderful trailer for this years’ LIAF. Extending a thank you to her and her team at the NFTS.
Lizzy Hobbs ran two amazing Flipbook Workshops which went down a storm and produced some lovely results. As usual they sold out, so we’re already thinking about running even more next year! You can take a look at the finished result below, edited together with each animator beginning and ending their ‘flipper’ with a small dot.
We’d also like to thank our industry judges – Maggie Ellis, Christine Hooper and Richard Wright. They dedicated many days and evenings to watching hundreds of films. Thank you to the Barbican for your continued belief in LIAF. In particular Tamara Anderson and Robert Ryder (from the Cinema Team). Also Daniela Fetta (Marketing), all box office, ushers and café staff and the Barbican Projectionists who continue to do an amazing job. So thank you to Matt, Jonathan, Thomas and Ida. The Barbican isn’t our only venue, we screen many of our programmes at The Horse Hospital in Russell Square – a unique and much treasured venue. So thank you to Roger and Tai and all your staff. Thank you to Charles Rubinstein from the Rio, Dalston where we screen a number of our childrens’ programmes too.
LIAF is very much a team effort. Without the passion and commitment of our volunteers, we simply wouldn’t have a festival. These incredible people give up hours and hours of their time to support LIAF. They’re a vital part of Team LIAF – you’ll have met some of them at our venues. So thank you Becky Weston, Lora Quelennec, Linnea Haviland and Diyala Muir!
And finally the vital core members of the team, working tirelessly behind the scenes: Anna Gregory who ensures our industry events run smoothy; Claude Trollope who resolves all techy issues and works closely with our filmmakers and venues to ensure that screening hundreds of films over 10 days not only happens, but happens without issue, and Mandy Smith our Producer, who lurks around in the background doing designy, marketingy and organizey things. And then there’s Malcolm Turner AKA ‘Uncle Travelling Matt’ – the LIAF hunter-gatherer and Co-Director, Helen Gibbins of MIAF, and last but by no means least, Nag Vladermersky – LIAF Director, walking encyclopaedia of animation and all-round festival guru.
So thank you to Team LIAF, thank you to all our supporters and thank you to you, our loyal and much-loved audience!