Cornwall College is celebrating after aspiring animation student Shannon Symons, 16, won Best Young Persons Film at the 2016 Roughcut Film Challenge at a prestigious event at Truro’s Plaza Cinema.
Budding film and animation creatives gathered for the screening of 62 moving image entries in an event to celebrate 50 years of film at Falmouth University, delivered in association with O-Region, Falmouth School of Television and WTW Cinemas. Keeping to the theme of ‘50’, the original, inspiring and thought provoking submissions included local, national and international entries. Film makers travelled from all across the country to attend the sell-out event.
Shannon’s short animation, titled ‘Day 50’ follows the diary of Dane as he experiences a zombie apocalypse. Shannon, upon hearing about the competition, was keen to produce something original, and which would help her hone her craft by working to a specific brief.
“I decided to start getting my work out there if I want a job in this industry and this gave me more of a purpose to animate something rather than the general ‘I just want to’ motive. Being at the awards was great, knowing that you’re in a room full of creative people and being able to see others’ work and getting to talk to them in person. When my animation was announced the winner I was completely speechless, I’m still trying to process it now. It feels great, especially as I really wasn’t expecting it at all. This award shows that I’m getting somewhere with my animations and that I have the potential to continue this as a job. It has definitely made me more confident in myself as well as my work.”
Professor Chris Morris, Director of the School of Film & Television at Falmouth University comments, “The judges were bowled over by Shannon’s film. It was simple and effective, but it was the quality of her drawing and playful storytelling that we loved. She has made a terrific film!”
Shannon is currently studying Creative Media Production BTEC Extended Diploma Level 3 (Animation for Film and Games) at Cornwall College and as part of her study is encouraged to explore external opportunities to improve employability skills and to boost her portfolio of work. The in-house learning company Creative Flare, provides the support for arts, media and performing arts students while they explore their specialist area through live external projects.
Amanda Wood, coordinator of Creative Flare explains, “We are very fortunate to be able to offer our learners the opportunity to engage in external projects in this way. Shannon is a great example of how students are embracing our provision to refine their talents, develop networks, and raise their professional profile. It’s a competitive world in the creative industries and Cornwall College is working very effectively with students in preparing for their future careers early on in their study programme. We are very proud that Shannon’s talents have been rewarded in such a high profile event, she is definitely putting her mark on the industry already!”