Ever since I was little, next to drawing non-stop, I have been telling stories to my younger siblings, my parents, my friends, and to anybody else who did or didn’t want to listen. Growing up I’ve come to focus my stories on mental health awareness, environmentalism, and emotional expression, wrapping these themes in a blanket of the fantastic and the surreal.
Tidy Town is a 2D animated short film conceived by Thirza van der Zee and myself. It’s a fable about the woolly and whiskered residents of Tidy Town, and their plan to get rid of the plastic trash that’s flooded Pastry Island. The film illustrates our vision about the collective problematic behavior of humans, as we continue to mass consume plastics, against our better judgment.
Within the team, I have focused my attention on directing, writing, and producing. My biggest obstacle was juggling my role as director and producer, especially as production was complicated by the rapid expansion of our team and the sudden change to our work environment due to COVID-19. In spite of these challenges, we’re capable of finishing our film mostly the way we envisioned it making Tidy Town our dream project.
As we’re nearing completion, I’m reminded of Michael Dudok de Wit’s master class (personal communication, September 10, 2018) in which he said if something moves you very deeply, that’s the moment you should embark on your project. This has been the case for us, and we hope for Tidy Town to have a healthy film festival life, sparking debate among viewers.