Phil Saunders and pupils from Guston primary at Kearsney

Art in the Park: Kearsney interpreted

Animator and Illustrator Phil Saunders has one of the Art in the Parks – Kearsney interpreted first commissions for young artists. Phil lives in Dover and recently graduated with a first-class degree from the University for the Creative Arts (UCA). He is making an animated film inspired by Kearsney Abbey and Russell Gardens.

At the start of the event I explained to the young people that they were providing scenes for an animation already in the making.The film is about wildlife in the park. The focus was collecting materials found in the park e.g twigs, bark, feathers and leaves. These assets will be used in stop motion sequences in the film.

To get a feel for the landscape and its surfaces found in the Abbey we created paper rubbings on different types of paper, using pastels, crayons, chalk, markers and ink. The young people also took inspiration in the park to draw a variety of scenes. After feeding the ducks their seeds, we recorded some sound for the production. 

All of these assets will now come together as moving images for certain scenes in the animation. Phil Saunders

They described the day as “Cool”, “Best day ever”, and all expressed a sense of pride in being involved in a project in the local area that they could bring others to see and a real sense of excitement that people they didn’t know would come to watch what they had been part of. In a school where many children’s families are employed either within the military or within the hospitality and catering trade it allowed children to interact directly not just with the environment and different media but with a professional artist hoping to make their living that way. We hope that will impact on their thinking of the many opportunities non-core subjects offer to them.  Primary School teacher