AfterGlow: A new animation arts project exploring epidemiology research

boredomresearch AfterGlow sketch

boredomresearch development sketch for AfterGlow – exploring spatially mapping of a mathematical model over a fictional landscape.

A new project will explore how to use animation to communicate the unpredictable dynamics of an infection transmission.

Vicky Isley & Paul Smith (aka boredomresearch), Research Lecturers at BU’s National Centre for Computer Animation (NCCA) were commissioned by Animate Projects, London in November 2013 to develop a new experimental animation project in collaboration with a biomedical scientist for Silent Signal (a Wellcome Trust supported project).

Animate’s mission is to connect audiences to the art and craft of animation, and through Silent Signal we will communicate to audiences – in UK galleries and online – the beauty and diversity of animation as an artform. The artists chosen for this project employ a variety of techniques and styles in their artistic practice, including 2D, hand drawn, collage, 3D CG, real-time, interactive and rotoscoping, and will be experimenting with the tools and processes of animation to bring an inspiring range of scientific ideas to life. The artists are also demonstrating the novel scientific techniques and technologies that scientists are using to decode the body’s signals, incorporating actual data, algorithms, coding and imaging making tools from the research in their artwork.

– Animate Projects (2014)

Boredomresearch have teamed up with Dr Paddy Brock, who is researching infectious disease transmission at the Imperial College London. Boredomresearch are interested in how they can combine real-time animation with stochastic models, communicating the unpredictable dynamics of an infection transmission scenario to a non-scientific audience. Through using the familiar visual language of landscape and cinematography, an audience will experience the fascinating shapes and movement of a malaria epidemic. Through the project boredomresearch have gained an understanding of epidemiological mathematical models that they can employ to create a compelling expression of real world phenomena.

Further details on the collaborative process are posted on the Silent Signal website.