Wednesday, 2 October 2019

Output animations

As part of MoDiP’s current exhibition ‘Output’, AUB Alumnus Jody Sweeney, BA (Hons) Visual Communication, was employed to create a series of visual explanations of the sometimes rather complex plastics manufacturing processes. These accompany the objects on display in MoDiP from 13th September 2019 - 13th March 2020 and can also be viewed online through our website. Katherine Pell, Museum Collections Officer.

Producing eleven plastic process animations for MoDiP has been a very exciting experience for me. Not only because it has been one of my first freelance works since graduating, but also because of the engaging subject, as I was learning more and more about plastics manufacturing as I went along. 

I was very eager to start, and began watching many plastic videos online. My favourite process to research and animate was the Sqezy washing up bottle. I was very new to the blow moulding process and wasn’t aware that to make the bottles, air is pushed into a plastic tube in order to expand the material into the mould. I now also know the reason behind the markings on the bottom of the bottle is because the excess tube at the bottom is cut. 

Another favourite of mine was Thermoforming, as the action of draping plastic over a mould as if it was a tablecloth, was quite a satisfying aesthetic. 

3D printing was a process that I was not entirely familiar with, especially SLS (selective laser sintering). To get my head around this process I was able to view a printer in the AUB workshop to see how it works. This was the most challenging and exciting animation to create in my opinion, as not only lasers were included, but the object being created was a fedora with a lot of texture and chain links integrated into the hat.

All of the animations were created by digitally drawing frames and objects. Titles, text and the MoDiP logo were also digitally drawn. My aim was to simplify the busy plastics process videos, usually filmed in factories. I created basic shapes for the moulds and machinery to visually interpret each process and used MoDiP’s colour palette to correlate with the museum branding.

Each object featured in the clips can be seen on display in the exhibition (MoDiP, 1st floor, AUB Library).

Jody Sweeney, BA (Hons) Visual Communication

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