Exploring local history through animation workshops

Published on 01 October 2022

Heritage portrait of Charles and Jane Wildbore and 12 of their children.

The city’s newest artist in residence will be giving youth the opportunity to learn animation.

The Palmerston North Artist in Residence scheme, a partnership between Massey University, Square Edge Community Arts and Palmerston North City Council, will see Martin Sercombe, an Auckland based moving image artist living in the city for 6 weeks.

As part of his involvement with the community he will be running workshops at the Square Edge Community Arts Centre alongside animator Britta Pollmuller.

The youth workshops have been funded through a Palmerston North Creative Communities Scheme grant and will be free of charge, making the school holiday experience accessible to anyone aged 8 to 14 years old.

Participants will explore the life of European settler and photographer Charles Wildbore, who produced a collection of photographs of the early settlers in Pohangina Valley.

They will use animation to explore how their own lives might have been growing up at that time.

Sercombe says exploring local history through animation is a wonderful way to bring communities together as they share their knowledge of their local heritage. “The process acts as a golden opportunity for the youngest and oldest members of the community to work side by side, sharing ideas and creativity.”

The first workshop on Monday 3 October from 10am to 2pm is for adults who want to teach animation. It comes with a $50 entry fee. Following this, there will be 2 two-day youth workshops, Tuesday-Wednesday, and Thursday-Friday, from 10am to 2pm.

In the first session they will study the historic photographs, then design characters and backgrounds for short animated scenes from Wildbore's life story.

In the second session they will animate the scenes and record voice overs, working from scripts that will be provided.

The teams will draw inspiration from local historian Dr Catherine Knight’s book Wildbore, A Photographic Legacy.

The finished work will be premiered at 7pm on Saturday 22 October in the FX Studio at Square Edge.

All equipment and art materials will be provided but bookings are essential as numbers are limited. To book, email reception@ca.org.nz or phone 06 241 8444

Photo: The Wildbore Family of Pohangina – Charles E Wildbore, circa 1915