The Flower in Me (2021) Erin Kim
The Flower in Me (2021) Erin Kim
Stories & Ideas

Tue 03 May 2022

Create something you love: tips for aspiring filmmakers

Animation Australia Education Film Industry Short film
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Your museum of screen culture

We caught up with Top Screen 2022 Jury Prize winners, Erin Kim, Alissa Mohamed and Finn Woodlock, to share their hot tips and filmmaking insights.

Top Screen 2022, 11, The Flower in Me, Erin Kim

The Flower in Me (2021) Erin Kim

Erin Kim

What inspired you to create an animation with your film, The Flower in Me?

I’ve always loved storytelling through visual language. When I was younger I would draw while watching cartoons, anime and movies. I find that animation is flexible because I can convey deep and abstract ideas in a physical form. By doing so, I can express myself and others who have similar experiences in a visually engaging way.

Do you have any advice for students doing VCE Media?

I think it’s really important to know your strengths and weaknesses. For me, I wasn’t confident in completing a detailed background for my animation, so I focused on the character designs and narrative instead. By establishing your strengths and weaknesses, planning your film can be less overwhelming.

How does it feel to be the Top Screen Jury Prize winner?

I am so grateful and honoured. I was really doubting myself and nit-picking my animation after seeing it so many times. I’m a perfectionist and rarely give myself credit, so when I received the Top Screen Jury Prize, I realised I did really well. I’m very proud of myself!

Top Screen 2022, 7, Strings, Alissa Mohamed

Strings (2021) Alissa Mohamed

Alissa Mohamed

What was the inspiration behind your film Strings?

I grew up watching a lot of animation, but gravitated towards thriller and horror films as I got older. I thought it would be cool to combine these genres and add a twist to your typical Disney or Pixar film. I was also obsessed with the film Coraline with its blend of dark, sinister tones and childlike elements.

Do you have any advice for students doing VCE Media?

My main tip is to create something you love. It can be easy to lose motivation and burn out, but it will feel less of a chore if you stick to something you genuinely enjoy doing. I recommend using Units 1 & 2 Media to experiment with different media forms and software, as developing these skills will greatly benefit you.

How does it feel to be the Top Screen Jury Prize winner?

Absolutely amazing! It feels like even more of an achievement knowing that my work is out there to inspire other filmmakers. It also gives me motivation to pursue filmmaking and animating as a career.

Puppet Show (2021), Finn Woodlock - Top Screen on Demand

Puppet Show (2021) Finn Woodlock

Finn Woodlock

Before making Puppet Show, when did you discover your passion for filmmaking?

Growing up, I used to make films with my sister using iMovie when trying to fill our days. Although they were pretty bad, we kept making them out of pure enjoyment. Since then, I’ve carried a passion for filmmaking, but it wasn’t until I reached VCE Media that I was struck with the desire to do more.

Do you have any advice for students doing VCE Media?

Time! Use it when you can and don’t procrastinate. It’s so important to keep on track, as it can be hard to get back on schedule after slipping up, wherever you may be in your filmmaking journey.

How does it feel to be a Top Screen Jury Prize winner?

It’s an incredible honour to have my film played as part of Top Screen, and to have it recognised by the Top Screen Jury is just icing on the cake. To have something that means so much to me showcased and celebrated is more than I can ask for. It justifies all the hours of hard work, planning and editing.

As part of the VCE Season of Excellence, Top Screen celebrates young emerging filmmakers across Victoria

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