22nd Aug, 2017

Amy scoops national award for animated documentary about mental health

A STUDENT from Solihull has received a national award for her animated documentary about mental health.

Amy Moss, 21, created a short animated film featuring interviews with medical professionals and those living with a mental health issue alongside a variety of animation techniques.

The ‘cleverly-made’ documentary received a Creative Conscience award, which recognises works that have a sustainable and humanitarian ethos.

Amy won the Selected Entry Award – one of four awards given by the judges.

The University of Worcester student said: “I feel really privileged to win this award because I felt as though the topic I was presenting wasn’t something that most people tend to gravitate towards; therefore I’m really pleased that I could produce a piece that got people talking about mental health.

“More importantly, it was the first piece of work I’d ever submitted so the fact that it won an award will be something that I’ll remember for the rest of my life.”

Amy’s lecturer encouraged her to enter her ‘Mind Over Matter’ piece produced through the University’s Experimental Animation module, which focuses on factual work and is often based on social campaigns or issues.

Her initial idea was inspired by a visit from a Beat (the UK’s eating disorder charity) ambassador, who spoke to students at the university about a possible creative collaboration.

Amy said: “I wanted the documentary to appeal to a person who has suffered with a mental health issue and the professionals who deal with the patients.

“More importantly, I wanted to present a first-hand point of view of someone dealing with a mental health issue.

“I wanted to end the stigma associated with it and by doing this in an interactive manner with animation, it allowed the documentary to appeal to a broad range of people.”

Amy spent seven months on the documentary, researching the topic and experimenting with techniques to create the style she wanted.

She sourced her own real life case study, as she felt this would represent the issue in the most honest way, and filmed and interviewed medical experts to present the facts without bias.

Before filming, Amy created a rough storyboard of how she wanted the piece to look.

She then worked alongside audio from her interviews to produce imagery, employing techniques such as pixilation and rotoscoping – a technique in which animators trace over live-action film, frame by frame, to capture realistic movement.

Amy is now working on another animated documentary about living with a family member who has autism.

To see her work visit www.creative-conscience.org.uk/winners/amy-moss

Amy and other University of Worcester creative students’ work will be on display at the Worcester Degree Show.

The show will take place at the City Campus and The Garage Studios in Worcester from Friday, May 19 to Thursday, May 25, between 10am and 4pm daily.

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