Aesthetica Short Film Festival takes place in York this weekend, with over 300 films screening in venues around the city. As well as new dramas, comedy, documentaries and music videos, the line-up includes some funny, thought-provoking and beautifully made animation. Here's a look at five of our favourites...
Marcus Armitage - Over Dinner
Marcus Armitage's two-and-a-half minute oil on glass animation is a poignant portrayal of a young soldier's last dinner with his family before he leaves to join the army.
Armitage graduated from the Royal College of Art this summer and made Over Dinner in his first year of studies - he's since produced a series of impressive hand painted and dawn films and his graduation project My Dad was one of the stand-out films from RCA's graduate showcase:
Daisy Jacobs - The Bigger Picture
Daisy Jacobs' stop-motion MA graduation film, The Bigger Picture, has won awards at several international festivals since its release and is one of ten films shortlisted for best animated short at next year's Oscars.
The film is about two brothers struggling to care for their elderly mother and was made using life-sized characters painted on to a wall and full size sets:
Alan Holly/And Maps and Plans - Coda
Also shortlisted for an Oscar nomination this year is Coda, a nine-minute hand drawn film from Dublin animation studio And Maps And Plans. The film was directed by Alan Holly and tells the story of a recently deceased person's meeting with Death.
Eoin Duffy - The Missing Scarf
Eoin Duffy's The Missing Scarf is a brilliant black comedy featuring the voice of George Takei, which begins as a children's fable before turning to something much darker. The film deals with some complex and mind-bending thoughts about life and the universe and stars a charming cast of woodland animals. Watch the film in full below, or read our interview with Duffy here.
Oscar Lewis - John and Iris
Falmouth fine art graduate Oscar Lewis' degree show film, John and Iris, is inspired by an interview he conducted with an elderly couple who have been married for 61 years. It's a lovely look at their life together and is made up of thousands of drawings photographed on a lightbox, based on a mix of photos taken after the interview, old pictures of the couple and found imagery. Since graduating, Lewis has been accepted to study animation at RCA and is working on a new set of drawn films based on interviews conducted around Europe.
Talks and events
This year's line-up is also the first to include fashion film and advertising strands, with shorts from White Lodge, RSA Films and Partizan as well as German, Polish, Italian and African productions.
Talks and workshops include one from Ian Mackenzie of Channel 4's creative diversity team on getting your short films noticed, another by Craig McNeil from record label Beggars on the secret to successful music videos, plus one by director Kathryn Ferguson on the rise of fashion film. RSA will also be discussing how to collaborate with brands and Blinkink executive producer James Stevenson Bretton will give a talk on animation production. To see the full line-up, click here.
Aesthetica Short Film Festival takes place at various venus in York from November 7-9. For showing times or to buy tickets, see asff.co.uk