Excitement is in the air at three Kintyre schools this week, as pupils prepare to take part in a series of animation workshops with Aardman Animations, the creators of some of the UK’s best loved characters, including Wallace and Gromit.
Campbeltown Picture House’s Film Institute has arranged for Aardman’s lead model-maker, Jim Parkyn, to visit the area on Friday, where he will meet pupils from Carradale and Drumlemble Primary Schools and Campbeltown Grammar School to show them how to make their own Aardman masterpiece and talk to them about his career and the world famous animation studio.
As well as Wallace and Gromit, Aardman has produced a number of other well-known animated television programmes and films, including Shaun the Sheep, Morph, Chicken Run, Early Man, Flushed Away, Arthur Christmas and The Pirates! In an Adventure with Scientists.
Talking in advance of the event, Argyll and Bute Council’s Policy Lead for Education, Councillor Yvonne McNeilly said: “Wow. What an amazing opportunity for pupils to learn from one of the most well-know and creative animators in Britain. Thousands of children and adults will have grown up watching animations made by Aardman, their characters are so well loved. I fondly remember when Morph first entered our screens on Tony Hart’s desk. He was, and still is, an iconic figure.
“The children are incredibly lucky to be given this opportunity. Not only will the workshop open the door to the different career paths that are available to our young people, it will also allow them to see the link between what they are learning at school and how they can use those skills doing real jobs in the film industry. I am excited to hear how the event goes.”
Ellen Mainwood, Manager at Campbeltown Picture House, said: “We’re very excited to bring Jim Parkyn all the way from the Aardman studios in Bristol to Campbeltown to run these workshops.
"They’re a fantastic opportunity for young people to enjoy a fun and creative session, whilst finding out tricks of the trade and what it’s like to work in the business. I can’t wait to see Campbeltown’s Aardman masterpieces."
During their time at the workshop, children will be try their hand at making their own Gromit, Shaun or Morph, under the expert eye and guidance of Jim. They will also be able to find out some of the trade’s best kept secrets, for example, how does Shaun the Sheep look so fluffy when he is made of clay? How can you create expressions on Gromit’s face when he has no mouth?
Campbeltown Picture House will be showing a triple bill of Aardman films on Saturday with free entry for Campbeltown Film Institute members. The institute is anyone to aged 10 - 25 and new members can sign up on the day.
The Campbeltown Film Institute was set up in Spring 2019 and is supported by CashBack for Communities through Creative Scotland’s CashBack for Creativity Programme.