Friday, September 14, 2018

Becka Barker's Animated Short BOUY at the 2018 FIN Atlantic International Film Festival

Sketch from Becka Barker's short film BUOY.

Becka Barker is one of the filmmakers at the 2018 FIN Atlantic International Film Festival, which runs from September 13 - 20. 

Her “crowd-sourced” hand-drawn animated short Buoy is in the Atlantic Shorts Program 2 lineup that screens September 15 and 17. 

The Atlantic Filmmakers Cooperative commissioned Becka to make a short animated film about the Halifax explosion to mark the 100th anniversary in 2017. 

As she dug into her research, she found footage posted online by the Nova Scotia Archives that was shot just two days after the disaster. She was astounded to see so many ordinary Haligonians assisting in rescue efforts and helping where they could.

From Becka: “This is what hit me hardest. Not just because of their grit in the face of such devastation, but because this felt like the Halifax I know. We rely on each other so much to get things done around here. Often, it feels to me like that's the only way. After all, when you live in a depressed economy on the edge of a continent, you simply can't go it alone. This footage and this thought gave me a spark for my project.”

Becka Barker. Photo: CFAT
Becka is known for her use of hand-crafted processes in her film and video work, and Buoy is no exception. She invited members of the public to trace frames she printed from the film footage, and used those to illustrate the tactile way people interacted with the explosion and the century-old images of the aftermath. Buoy is the result of that exploration.

In addition to her Talent Trust scholarships for film studies, Becka's work has been supported by the National Film Board of Canada, Canada Council for the Arts, Arts Nova Scotia, and the Halifax Regional Municipality. 

She’s been regular part-time faculty at NSCAD University since 2005, and was visiting foreign faculty in the Film and Animation Department at SoonChunHyang University in South Korea from 2008-2012.

Buoy screening details 
Atlantic Shorts Program 2

September 15, 2018
Begins at 1:00 p.m.

September 17, 2018
Begins at 9:10 p.m.

To learn more about Becka and her work, visit

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