What to expect from the next year in… Illustration and Animation

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Animator, Caitlin McCarthy

What’s the biggest change in animation you would like to see this year?

Though there’s still plenty of work to be done, I feel like there’s a fantastic amount of chat, as well as real action being taken, re: the gender balance in animation. That said, I think race and ethnicity is a huge thing that isn’t talked about enough. The animation industry is overwhelmingly white, and I think there’s progress to be made in uplifting and amplifying the voices and work of people of colour, in the same way we’re doing with non-male animators.

Ideally, we could all be seen as just animators, but as it stands being female or not being white are almost part of the job title. I think we’re making leaps and bounds in terms of laying down the groundwork to make the industry more gender balanced, but we need the same energy surrounding racial diversity in the industry.

What trends or stylistic attributes do you think we’re going to see within animation in 2020?

More illustrators animating! I’ve noticed it a lot already, and from lots of people whose work I love – Molly Fairhurst, Aysha Tengiz, Bridget Meyne, Helena Covell and loads more.

With pretty much everything migrating online, I think lots of publications are taking advantage of animated formats and it makes me very happy to see! I love looking at animations that come from people with a non-animation background. There’s always such unconventional approaches to movement that you just don’t get from someone who’s learned it by the books, so they feel really refreshing and full of personality.

I also have been noticing a lot of people animating frogs. But, that might just be confirmation bias since I love them.

What would you like to personally do within your work in the year ahead?

More personal work! I love commercial work – it pays my rent – but nothing beats the feeling of completing a film that you’ve come up with all on your own, and not had to take any feedback on.

I’ve also written a short film that’s been on the back-burner while I pay aforementioned rent, but I’m hoping I can make it this year. I also really want to make a music video, which I think is a rite of passage of animators, but I still haven’t done it! My dream music vid would be for Frankie Cosmos, but I haven’t figured out who to email to make it happen yet.

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