Within these Walls: A Collaborative Animation Film Created by Design Students in Different Locations during the COVID-19 Pandemic


A collaborative animation short film ‘Within these Walls’ was the outcome of a ‘Moving Images & Animation’ Course at IIT Hyderabad. This film was created by nine Masters of Design students, despite the constraints of living in different cities and villages across India during the COVID-19 pandemic. The objectives of the course were to understand the principles of animation and the animation production process. This led to the query of how could a practice-based animation course effectively deliver these objectives in an online mode? To address this query, collaborative filmmaking (Baumann, Lhaki, and Burke 2020) was adopted as a research method to express pandemic experiences and co-create a film. Animation has often placed greater value on the final artifact rather than the creation process. However, it is argued that a unique understanding of knowledge can be unfolded from the creative process (Spicer 2015). Norman McLaren’s animation experiments were practice-based and practice-led that advanced the technology and processes of animation by pushing the limits of what animation could achieve artistically achieve (Dobson 1994). Drawing inspiration from this, the students at IIT Hyderabad were briefed to write a verse of a poem expressing their pandemic experience. Their verses were further developed into a short animation sequence. While each sequence had a unique visual approach, the rhythm of the poem contributed to weave it together as a cohesive narrative experience. This suggests the potential of collaborative filmmaking and the various creative possibilities that can emerge, irrespective of the limitations and circumstances.


Delwyn Remedios
Assistant Professor, Design, Indian Institute of Technology Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh, India


Presentation Type

Workshop Presentation


Design Education



Digital Media

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