Better Days Ahead for Animators, As USP Holds LIFANIMA Workshop, Awards
Riding under the theme, “Collaboration As the Key to Actualising Animation Projects”, the Lagos International Festival of Animation, LIFANIMA held its maiden festival, a first of its kind in the country at the Freedom Center, Lagos Island, Lagos featuring young but highly talent animators in the country.
A brain child of USP Brand Management Consultants, proud owners of Nigeria’s first educational cartoon series, “Adventures of Turtle Taido”, the event which brought together vibrant professionals in animation related fields such as creative animators, film making, digital marketing, information technology companies and manufacturers among others.
The one-day festival opened with a workshop with the convener, Muyiwa kayode, CEO, USP setting the ball rolling as he declares “the animation industry is just beginning to blossom in Nigeria.
“LIFANIMA will provide a platform for animators to interact with other stakeholders for optimum value creation and rapid growth of the industry”.
Not unmindful of the fact that the industry is at its infancy stage in Nigeria, Muyiwa showered encomium on the participants’ entries received for screening and to compete for the maiden animation awards. “The quality of entries received for this maiden edition, confirms our belief that there is tremendous animation and special effects talent lying across the country”, he adds.
This sets the stage for the what became exciting and revealing session primed to henceforth animate the African animation industry by positioning the practitioners and the industry for the business side of the industry as figured out by the youthful but intelligent panel who acknowledged USP’s very unique and brave move to bring about a platform for the “forgotten or behind the scene” animators.
Uche Anisiuba, CEO, Quadron Studios is excited to be a participant and a discussant at the event. For Uche it is highly commendable that animators are coming together under one umbrella to reason together especially on the business and collaboration aspects of the industry. Hitherto, it’s been “solo-run mostly and we do not give enough thought to the business aspect”, he submits. As the LIFANIMA platform becomes more regular, issues like collaboration, fund sourcing and distribution of our outputs among others will get sorted out, the foundations are being laid today, “I see the platform helping practitioners on how to navigate the waters – business wise and collaborations for big budget projects”.
Another panelist is Toochukwu Ogbogu, Creative Director, Color Red, an animation and Visual effects Studio, he did his Masters in Animation in the UK and worked out there for a couple of years before returning to set up his business about two years ago. With his exposure and experience, he believes the industry in Nigeria is in its toddler stage and needs efforts like this, the support and impetus to grow into a mature industry, “the potential to be great is there” he adds.
For him, the LIFANIMA idea is great, it indicates the industry is picking up. “It is hope rising for many young practitioners and talents. As SME operations we employ people and we need visibility and right packaging to attract the right businesses and investors. If these run well, the industry will be able to attract the right talents. He sees the event as a spark, “we need to develop an umbrella association for the practice and begin to put good structures in place for the tomorrow of the industry”.
The festival coming at this time is a solution platform where issues in the fledgling animation industry are being pragmatically addressed declares Ewonron Amune, CEO, WON Creative Ventures. “You could feel the pulse that solutions are coming forth from the discussions today such as artists’ survival. How do we combat mediocrity which is gaining ground in this embryonic industry that has massive potential? He asks as one of the issues considered, just as the immense benefits the internet offers animators and the industry in general.
Entries screened which will also contest for the maiden edition of the LIFANIMA awards include “Gang Run” – by A Richards, “Sango & Friends” – by O.J. Okosun and “Talk More for Less” – By Samuel Ishola. These are shortlisted for the Best 2D category. Best 3D Category has “Molue, the Revolt” – by Ekene Okoye; “Pull” –by Collins Egba and “Robo Phone” – by Olumide Adeosun.
To contest for the Best Animation Commercial are “Leadway Funeral Insurance” – By O.J. Okosun; “Manifest” – Olumide Adeosun and “Total Ascent Edutech” – by A. Richards. Similarly, entries for the “Best Special Effects category” are “Fly Effect” –by A. Richards; “Molue, the Revolt” – Ekene Okoye and “Raptor” – Olumide adeosun.
The LIFANIMA festival is supported by BrandCrunch as media partner. Other partners on the project include The Guardian, Brilla FM, Radio One, Yes Magasine and Thisday Newspapers.
Watch this space for the LIFANIMA winners.