Janet Curley Cannon
UK based artist
Interview: 10 Questions
1. Tell me something about your life and the educational background –
I am a visual artist, American by birth but living and working in the southeast of England. I studied for a BA in art history in Seattle WA in the early 1980’s, then photography in Greece where I met my English husband. I worked in the IT industry in the UK for many years before returning to my art in 2001. In my return to the art world I combined my love of photography and drawing with the latest in digital technology. I studied for a Masters in London in 2004/05 focusing on digital printmaking and mixed media work using digital print.
2. When, how and why started you filming?
When studying for my MA I undertook a mini-residency at the local arts centre in the Digital Media Centre which gave me access to a large format printer. They also ran courses on animation techniques which captured my imagination and I and a few fellow students requested a workshop for visual artists on using animation software.
3. What kind of subjects have your films?
The same visual interests that inspire all my work – urban scenes, surfaces, structures.
4. How do you develop your films, do you follow certain principles, styles, etc?
They start as an idea formed from a drawing or from some of my photographs, and grow from there into an animated version of my 2D art.
5. Tell me something about the technical equipment you use.
I use only software – drawing with a graphics tablet in Photoshop, montaging with my photographs or other digital images, then use Quicktime and Final Cut to combine and finish the animations.
6. What are the chances of new media for the genre film/video in general and you personally?
I think it will continue to grow stronger and stronger as the main means for promotion and distribution of works from individuals through to the mega-corporations, everything will be downloaded in the not-too-distant future. For me it will remain just one of many methods I use to express my artistic self.
7. How do you finance your films?
All self-funded to date!
8. Do you work individually as a video artist/film maker or do you work in a team? if you have experience in both, what is the difference, what do you prefer?
In my 3 short animations to date I have worked individually but I am presently working with a local poet who has put together a wonderful sound piece. She has seen my urban animations and gave me the sound piece to visualise as I see fit. Her sound piece is very strong and has made me re-think how I have responded visually several times, an interesting experience but probably not a true collaboration. I enjoy both aspects of working, each has it’s pro’s and con’s.
9. Who or what has a lasting influence on your film/video making?
I consider my animations an extension of my work as a visual artist, though I grew up on Disney (Fantasia) and the old Warner Brothers cartoons that have indirectly influenced my manner of working with animations I’m sure.
10. What are your future plans or dreams as a film/video maker?
They will continue to be part of my work as a visual artist and I would love to continue to do a work with animation, or a moving drawing as I like to think of my work, every year!
11. Can your works viewed online besides on VideoChannel? Where?