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Triggerfish invites high school animators to submit films
DURBAN: At the Durban International Film Festival and Durban FilmMart yesterday, Triggerfish Animation Studios launched a new programme aimed at engaging with high school animators to stimulate the development of animation at school level.
In a presentation at the 2018 Durban Talents programme, Triggerfish CEO Stuart Forrest spoke about the fast pace of growth of the South African animation industry, and the growing need to create awareness of animation as a career opportunity, as well as the need to find solutions to improve access to animation training.
“Triggerfish currently has - in production and under negotiation - two feature films, two TV series and two TV specials, and we’re turning away work because the industry isn’t big enough to support more productions,” Forrest says. “We’re looking at raising animation awareness at school level so that we don’t have the same capacity problem in 10 years time.”
Forrest also spoke about the growing need for visual storytelling literacy in all career categories.  “We live in an increasingly video-driven world, where having the basic skills to visually communicate concepts with clarity is an important life skill which goes hand-in-hand with effective reading and writing,” he says. “Learning to tell a simple story through animation is a fun way to develop these skills, and all you need is a smartphone and some freely available software.”
Scholars are encouraged to submit short films to Triggerfish before the end of each month, from which Triggerfish will choose a Staff Pick of the month which they will promote on all their social media platforms.  All scholars who submit films will also receive personal encouragement from experienced animators.  The Staff Picks will also go into onto a shortlist and be eligible for a grand prize in January of animation software and a drawing tablet, among other prizes still to be confirmed.
The programme forms part of Triggerfish’s learning division, Triggerfish Academy, which is launching a specialised one-year animation course in 2019 at their studios in Cape Town. 
Details of how to enter are found on the website http://academy.triggerfish.com/, which also has pointers on how to create your first animation with just a smartphone. Aspiring animators are encouraged to join the community on the Triggerfish Academy website, where they will get access to studio tour invitations and online animation tips, as well as notifications of future developments in this programme.

About Triggerfish 
Established in 1996, Triggerfish is a Cape Town-based film and entertainment company. The studio has produced two of the top five highest-grossing South African feature films of all time: Adventures in Zambezia (2012) and Khumba (2013). 
Triggerfish has also provided animation for three multi-award-winning BBC Christmas adaptations produced by Magic Light Pictures: Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler’s Stick Man (2015) and The Highway Rat (2017) and Roald Dahl’s Revolting Rhymes (2016). 
Revolting Rhymes was nominated for an Oscar and won over 15 international awards, including the International Emmy Awards Kids: Animation prize; the Cristal at Annecy; Best Animated Special at the Annie Awards; Best One-Off Special at Kidscreen; and Best Animation at the BAFTA Children’s Awards. 
Triggerfish is currently in production on their third feature film, Seal Team, and on Zog, another Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler adaptation produced by Magic Light Pictures for BBC for Christmas 2018. 
For more information, visit https://www.triggerfish.com/ and follow the animation studio on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.