“Oh Willy…”

Good afternoon! Today, I am sharing with you this piece called “Oh Willy…” by Emma De Swaef and Marc James Roels [1].

After weeks of animating my final film in Maya, it was so refreshing to set eyes on this beautiful stop-motion piece! I was just browsing through Vimeo in search of some inspiration, and what drew me towards this was definitely its unique visuals and palette.

Things I love

  • Narrative: This is quite a unique and entertaining piece, given that it’s titled “Oh Willy”. However, the medium of animation somewhat gives the story a particular artistic filter that live action could not achieve.
  • Colour palette: This is what attracted me to click on this video! I ADORE this palette so much! This selection of nude, warm tones is really gentle on the eyes. I personally love how it’s not overcrowded with too many colours – it sets the film in a very particular space and time.
  • Textures: I personally feel that textures is a great strength in Stop-Motion that I find so difficult to achieve in CGI. The textures of the materials used is so intriguing and it truly brings out the charm in stop-motion. For example, the texture of the fluffy trees here have an interesting organic appearance. It’s mesmerising to see how artists can get creative with a certain selection of materials!
  • Set up & Focus: The creators used blur & focus really well to give a cinematic feel as well as help the audience focus on the narrative, even when there is no dialogue.
  • Music: Dramatic music sets up the scene in a way that allows us to immerse into this little world that the animators have created. It also gives the audience a sense of what emotions the creator wishes to convey. Subtle sound effects such as the fence ripping also brings this animation to life.
  • Lighting: The use of lighting here compliments the palette chosen. It is really gentle on the eyes – nothing too harsh. The use of lighting here gives a sense of reality – it is convincing that the characters are in a real place with real sunlit landscapes.

What I took away: Boiling down to the key features I took away from this piece:

  • Aesthetic: stunning visuals that blend together to create a specific space and time. Choice of palette, textures and camera shots are utilised and well thought out.
  • Camera: the choice of camera shots, lighting and set up really create a cinematic feel here. I think this is something I should plan out before executing my animation.

Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed this artistic piece. What are your thoughts?

Until next time,


References: Emma De Swaef and Marc James Roels Co-produced by Beast Animation/Vivement Lundi!/ Polaris Film Productions/ il Luster Films, 2012. Oh Willy…. [ Video ] Available at: <https://vimeo.com/45322909> [Accessed 20 February 2020].

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