Onwards: James Jarvis Animation

James Jarvis has executed a terrific running animation script. A nice collaboration for Nike (sponsored by them) but without the obtrusive marketing. Onwards explores the topic of running free and leaves the viewer with a sense of searching for their own experiences. This has been out for a while, but I felt this to be too good not to repost. After noticing a post from Simon Lamb, I dug around a little in hopes find more information about the 2009 project. 


"At the beginning of last year I was thinking about what kind of project I would like to work on. I had become interested in the idea of characters that were less referential and more iconic and abstract. I particularly wanted to do something with a potato-headed stick-man that I had been drawing at that time.

I liked the idea of a moving image project that involved my obsession with running. Rather than make a narrative-based film, I wanted the content to be non-linear, reflecting the way I make drawings that have a logic all of their own.

I was talking to a friend at Nike, Kerry Shaw, about this idea and, given the subject matter, she suggested that Nike might be interested in supporting the film. I had been an admirer of Shynola's collaboration with David Shrigley in their promo for the track Good Song. I liked the way it maintained Shrigley's drawn aesthetic in its transformation into moving image, so I contacted them to see if they would be interested in working with me on the idea. Richard 'Kenny' Kenworthy agreed, and worked heroically on the film.

The film was inspired by certain personal experiences in running – a favourite run over Blanchland moor in Northumberland, being attacked by a crow in Singapore – and also by the transcendent, almost psychedelic experience of the simple act of running.

Rather than a marketing project inititated by Nike, the film was something proposed and produced by myself, and as such I hope represents a much more equal collaboration with a brand."
- James Jarvis' Blog


Animation by James Jarvis. Directed by Richard Kenworthy, and music courtesy of Caribou (Crayon)

Jason Eichhorst1 Comment