Pillow Talk
Sometimes we just can't sleep - for many reasons! What kept me up many nights was making my first solo short-film (this one!!), which was also my entry to the Animator Guild Animation Contest 2021.
I enjoy participating in animation contests because I can learn so much - and, of course, challenge myself. The Contest was a year-long one, but I ended up doing this animation in 1 month. Initially, I had a completely different story, totally anime/action-based, which I ended up archiving to do sometime in the future.
During the pandemic, I found myself having trouble to sleep due to many factors like stress and lack of physical activity... To be honest, watching the lights from the cars on the road come through my window, and projecting shapes on the wall with my hand while I couldn't sleep was the spark for this short film.
Role: Creative director, Storyboarder and Animator.​​​​​​
(2021)
Storyboard
The film was supposed to be 1-minute long or more. As I was running out of production time already, I tried and boarded it to show the passage of time and steadiness the simplest I could, adding some humor at the end, of course. I included some things I like to do when I can't sleep such as watching the lights and looking at my hand shape against the ceiling. Although I took some inspiration from my own experience, this room has nothing to do with my bedroom!
Backgrounds
I'm not very fond of doing background, to be honest, so I used as little as possible. Oh well, haha! Went for this grainy look on the background and ugh, it's not easy to make it look good...
One thing I really wanted to do was the first-person head turn which gives a panoramic view from the ceiling. So I layed down in bed and drew the angles as I saw them. I don't know if this was the most accurate way but I had some fun and I'm really proud of how this shot turned out!
Character design
I had recently discovered that cleaning up characters with no contour line was way easier for me, and I wanted to explore it further. Again, since I lacked time, I went for a rougher look and nothing is so nicely tied-up... it may add a bit of texture to the animation tho, haha. 
Animation process
For some shots, I'd record myself doing the action or observe my hands moving so I could draw and animate it. I tried to be very economic animation-wise, but looking at it now, I wish I would've pushed and exaggerated more the poses and actions.
Post production was maybe the easiest bit? But it wasn't easy anyway. With all those lights and the ambient color change over the film, I had a great time working with masks, layers and effects.
Overall, this was great fun! I could share on screen something that was so particular to me, yet many people can relate, which is insomnia. Also, I could learn that the more subtle is the movement you want to create, the harder... Gotta work this out more on my next personal projects!
Now I wish I would've been more decisive from the beginning so I'd have plenty of time to work on this film. I'm sooo glad it turned out how it did! :)
Thank you for watching!

More of my work:

Back to Top