Animation - a COVID-resistant industry

With the easing of lockdown regulations, the False Bay TVET College, 2D Animation program was able to host two, one day stop-frame animation workshops. The workshop was facilitated by animation artist Thulani Yose-Simantov through the auspices of the Triggerfish Foundation which is the educational platform for the Bergvliet based Animation company Triggerfish. False Bay TVET College has recognized the need for transforming access to studying animation skills and in response has been running a fully funded 1-year certificate in 2D Animation funded by the MICT SETA and various other funding partners. 


Image 1 FBC 2D Animation smallThe current group of students is funded through the Department of Labour Youth Activation Programme. The National Certificate in 2 D Animation is one-year a foundation course at level 5 and introduces artists to the animation pipeline process and all the various skills and roles and therefore employment opportunities there are within the industry. The course also provides learners with the digital-skills necessary to create motion graphics, a fast-growing area of employment that is used across a wide variety of digital media from mobile devices, websites, online educational content, news and sports casts.

As the current students are wrapping up their training, this was a good time to show the students how they can create stop frame animation on their own phones with the free Stop Motion Studio applications. Thulani spoke to the students about how the course they are studying is going to prepare them for careers within the 4th Industrial Revolution. The course delivers the animation content to the learners through a system that mimics the animation production pipeline. However, with the stop motion app, the learners were able to go from concept to finished short film in one day, thanks to the focused guidance provided by Thulani. It was a very inspiring and energising experience as the animators learnt an extra skill set through the Stop Motion Studio App which they can use to tell their own stories.

Thulani, an acclaimed animation artist, works with the foundation to introduce animation as a viable career to scholars. Image 3 FBC 2D Animation small

Reiterating the viability of Animation as a viable career path, in a recent Forbes article (https://www.forbes.com/sites/robsalkowitz/2020/06/26/africa-angles-to-be-animations-next-global-hotspot/#291dd56a6959) Africa Angles To Be Animation’s Next Global Hotspot, Rob Salkowitz reported that the animation industry was one of the few broadcast industries that was able to be take their work process online during the global COVID 19 pandemic and lockdown. This is because much of the animation working system already involved animators working from remote or home-based studios across continents and time zones. Digital animation (whether 2D or 3D) is a career that is integral within the 4th Industrial Revolution where it is applied not only for entertainment but increasingly in bringing to life medical illustrations and diagrams, scientific discoveries and educational content, to name only a few applications of animation.

“From Cape Town to Cairo, Lagos to Nairobi, animation is fueling the emergence of a creative economy across the African continent and helping to satisfy increasing global demand for new programming and production capacity. Just this month, a series of announcements underscores the rising prominence of African voices in one of the few COVID-resistant segments of the media and entertainment industry.” Rob Salkowitz states in the Forbes article Africa Angles To Be Animation’s Next Global Hotspot
If you are interested in a career using applied animation skills, applications are now open for the False Bay TVET College 2D Animation 2021 program. For more information, please visit our website at www.falsebaycollege.co.za or contact the Muizenberg campus at 021 7888373.

Mthembu, Senior Manager, Industry Support Development at the GFC (Gauteng Film Commission) notes that: “Animation is not only a pandemic-resistant industry, it has the potential to create a significant amount of employment for the youth of South Africa in a period when Africa is positioning itself as a global hotspot for animation services.”

Cate Hunter: False Bay TVET College 2D Animation Lecturer.