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Experimental Animation

Sophie Maria Vickers

Sophie Maria Vickers is a London based animator and mixed reality artist. She graduated from The Manchester School of Art with a first-class honours degree in Illustration with Animation. She continued her practice at the Royal College of Art, directing a virtual reality film which utilised both 2D and 3D animation within an immersive space. Over the last year she has enjoyed working primarily in 3D animation having directed a short animated film called Aeons Ark. She enjoys building other worldly places and exploring themes such as technology, religion and the future.

Show Location: Battersea campus: Studio Building, Ground floor

I am driven to create other-worldly spaces filled with fantastical creatures and enchantment. Overall, I aim to create a sense of wonder through my worlds. Currently I am exploring topics such as artificial intelligence, technology and religion. Since my practice is so centred around building spaces, utilising immersion and 3D was a natural progression.   

Having primarily worked with traditional 2D mediums prior to discovering immersive technology, my work has developed significantly since delving into the world of 3D. I decided to continue on to postgraduate study as I felt I had begun to explore new and exciting ways of working with mixed reality animation. Throughout my time at the Royal College of Art I have continued experimenting with augmented reality, virtual reality and 360° video. 

My first year film Do you Want to go to Tesco? (2021) was a virtual reality film exploring my relationship with my bedroom and reality throughout the pandemic.  

For my graduation film Aeons Ark (2022) I decided to tackle creating my first fully 3D animated film. It has been an amazing experience to develop my skills both as a director and an animator over the last year. I am excited to continue building more new worlds in the future.

Aeons Ark is a futuristic flood epic which depicts the destruction of a future world by a momentous flood. The film is a reappreciation of both the biblical Noah’s Ark story and the Mesopotamian flood myth. In this version the God is an artificial intelligence which has become a deity to a group of humans. Flood myths are universal with many cultures and religions around the world sharing a similar earth destroying flood story. The film aims to find a new appreciation of these stories by taking the story out of the context of a specific religion.


3D Animated Film

It was important for me that the world itself takes centre stage of the film. I wanted to create a highly tangible world which does not relate to a known time and place and therefore does not relate to a specific religion.

The humans in my film are very childlike, gormless creatures and throughout the process of making them I have thought of them as not really human.

The inspiration to have an artificially intelligent God in my film came from seeing a child interact with an Alexa. It is interesting the ways that technology and religion may intersect in the future.

The final scene in my film will be a contrast to the traditional calamitous depictions of flood we have seen throughout the world. I will instead be creating a sequence where the human bodies disintegrate and return back into the water peacfully.

This is my final first year film Do you want to go to Tesco? (2021) It is an exploration of my own experience of my bedroom during the lockdowns, when going to Tesco became the only escape from daily life.

The vimeo video shows the 360° video version being interacted with.