A year ago, two talented Ringling College of Art and Design students, Beth David and Esteban Bravo, created a Kickstarter for their senior thesis animation. Their goal was to raise 3k. They were blown away by supporters when they raised over 10k. Finally, two days ago they released their highly-anticipated animation. Initially, I thought this short film was created by Pixar because it’s so well crafted. Everything down to the texture of the hair, music, lighting, and storyline is seamless. Every little detail, including the transitions and facial expressions added to the heart-warming storyline. Setting aside the technicalities, the message of the story was also touching.
Watching this animation was like drinking a cup of rich, hot chocolate on a cold winter night. So many warm and fuzzy vibes! The premise of this animation was: “A closeted boy runs the risk of being outed by his own heart after it pops out of his chest to chase down the boy of his dreams.” Sherwin is an insecure middle school boy who has yet to accept his sexuality, while Jonathan is the classic, effortlessly cool boy who is also the most popular. Sherwin’s heart is another adorable character in the story, which takes this emotional topic and makes it lighthearted.
This animation is important because according to Esteban and Beth, “Being gay has not been widely explored in computer animations. 9/10 LGBT+ youths have reported instances of bullying based on their orientation this past year. We want to put out a message of love and self-acceptance for all the kids and young people who struggle to identify as LGBT+ just like Sherwin does. We hope our film will inspire an understanding from all walks of life that the heart wants, what the heart wants. And there is nothing wrong with that.”
What a beautiful concept and brilliant execution. Check it out for yourself. Have some tissues ready because it’s so good, you might need them.
All photos belong to Beth David and Esteban Bravo.
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