‘Heavyweight’ Packs Heartfelt Punch

/ Jul 23, 2013

Heavyweight

A

The overnight sensation that vogue media pundits call “storytelling” was actually heralded as an art form long before it became a tool of persuasion adopted by marketers waxing romantic over the wonders of an Oreo. While the interweb has provided the platform and tools to empower great telling of tales, we find simple stories that touch the heart, provide subtle layers of complexity, and leave the audience pondering its varied nuances in short supply. I point to “Heavyweight,” by British animator/illustrator Joe Sparkes, as several cuts above the pedestrian Film School 101 clips that overpopulate the web channel universe.

The film school analogy refers to the fact that Sparkes, 26, created this two-minute, 40 second clip as his recent graduation project from London’s Kingston College’s School of Animation and Illustration. This filmmaker is no newcomer to the art world, previously making his mark as a book illustrator for Random House. In “Heavyweight,” we see the story of a fighter unfold, from locker room to the ring and back again, blurring the enigmatic boundaries between expectations and reality, as well as the muted contrasts between rage and simple acts of kindness. To go into greater detail would spoil the beauty of the marvelous work — a colorless, voiceless animation whose complex narrative requires repeat views to understand its elegance.

The boxing ring is perhaps only a metaphor for anyone entering an overwhelming challenge armed with talent, but unsure of his or her footing, letting self-doubt overrule confidence and experience. A trip to this young animator’s personal web page provides a look into his process as it evolves from sketch to completed video. As an added bonus, proving the accuracy of the “birds of a feather” adage, it’s worth checking out the work of Sparkes’ colleague and sometime collaborator, Jonah Ainslie. Both have become Vimeo darlings, giving hope for the future of real storytelling.

Tags: , , , , , ,


  • Andrew Orillion

    Thank you so much for recommending this! This was art in the truest sense of the word.

lyor-cohen-youtube-music

Pioneering Hip Hop Exec Lyor Cohen Joins YouTube as Global Head...

 
alpha-legendary-digital

Legendary Digital Reveals Alpha Subscription Service Launch...

 
time-inc-jash

Time Inc. Teams with Digital Comedy Producers Jash for Branded Content

 
Amazon Logo

Amazon Greenlights Three Comedy Pilots as Series

 
Industry Tickets Selling Fast!
Click above to lock in your registration for VidCon 2015!
 
cartoon-network-app

How the Cartoon Network Combined the Best of VOD and Linear TV...

 
jukin-media-ethos

Jukin Media Goes Viral for Brands with Ethos Division Launch

 
Streamy Awards

Streamy Awards Trade In VH1 for YouTube, Again

 
zefr-alignment-report

Matching Ads to Videos Not So Simple, According to Zefr’s...

 
shomi

Plug Pulled on Canadian SVOD Service Shomi

 
Twitter

What’s Trending on the Twitter Sale

 
Machinima Logo

Machinima Teams with SiriusXM for Daily Esports Radio Show

 
Hearst

AwesomenessTV, Vice, Complex to Power New HearstLive...

 
dirty-30-hannah-hart-mamrie-hart-grace-helbig

VIDEO: ‘Dirty 30’ Confessions with Stars Hart,...

 
facebook-thumbs-down

Facebook Says It’s Sorry It Vastly Overestimated Video...

 
craig-piligian-pilgrim-media-group

Pilgrim Media Group CEO Craig Piligian (‘The...

 
youtube-heroes-for-change

Heroes or Rats?: YouTube Unveils New Program for Creators Who...

 
Vessel says it's doing well in its first month

Why Verizon is Pursuing Vessel, the...

 
jared-feldman-and-sam-hui-ph-d-at-the-2014-canvs-launch

How Canvs Media is Harvesting Emotional Insights on YouTube,...

 
marlon-wayans

Marlon Wayans Getting ‘Naked’ for Netflix with Regina Hall

 
huffpost-ryot-aol

HuffPost RYOT Launching Virtual Reality Comedy Series and News...

 
youtube-vote-irl

YouTube Launches #voteIRL Campaign Targeting Digital-First Generation

 
tyler-oakley-camp17

How Top YouTubers (incl. Tyler Oakley & Meghan Rienks)...

 
charlie-sheen-anger-management

Charlie Sheen to Star in Crackle Feature ‘Mad Families’

 
filmbuff_videoink_300x250

Gunpowder & Sky Buys Distributor FilmBuff As Vision for...

 
toy-freaks-youtube

Toy Freaks Top Viewed YouTube Channel in August According to...

 
jeffrey-tambor-transparent-amazon

Emmy Wrap-Up 2016: Jeffrey Tambor (‘Transparent’)...

 
Twitter

Twitter Scores 2.1 Million Viewers for Thursday Night Footall Kickoff

 
youtube-sad-face-error

Vloggers Not Unique Snowflakes: 90 Million Flag YouTube Videos...

 
Mode Media

‘Billion Dollar Startup’ Mode Media Shuts Down

 
raised-firsts-branded-tv

Who Is Winning The Marketing Revolution And Why?

 
shes-gotta-have-it

Netflix Orders ‘She’s Gotta Have It’ Series...

 
swedish-dicks-peter-stormare-keanue-reeves-viaplay

What Is ‘Swedish Dicks’ and Who Is Selling It?

 
seamlessly-she-monica-potter-aol-partner-studio-gmc-acadia

How GMC is Using the AOL Series ‘Seamlessly She’...

 
Netflix_new

Liberty Global to Put Netflix on Set-Top Boxes in 30 Countries

 
vincent-cacace-vertebrae

Getting to the Spine of VR’s Monetization Challenges with...

 
meredith_brandfront_videoink_300x250

Meredith Hosted Its Own “Front” Stacked with 20 New Series

 
complex-networks-hearst-verizon

Verizon and Hearst Move RatedRed.com and Seriously.TV Under...

 
Twitter

Twitter Launches Live Streaming Apps for Amazon Fire, Apple TV...

 
YouTube Community

YouTube Fights Back Against Social Media Rivals with Community Feature

 
Casual Hulu

Vimeo Opening Television Store with Lionsgate Content, Launching...