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A collection of mind-expanding films, inspiring artists, and insights into the animation process to fuel your creative practice.

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Monday Shorts

Make your Mondays a little more pleasant with a newly curated short film each week, plus our insights into why we love them.

A mysterious creature stands with outstretched arms under a glowing light

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NO FREE SWIM THIS SATURDAY image, with a light green background and dark blue text

We're gearing up for our 40th anniversary reunion (event To be Posted!) and need the classroom for some preparations!

manila paper background, simple illustrated bunting along the top of the image, and a bunch of o, O and 0 characters with various other letters and colours sprinkled throughout the rest of hte space.

Rendered on a portable typewriter, you can see the film as Johnson’s daydreams manifesting through a dreary day job, the excitement of early aviation rendered in a few pieces of punctuation and some dabs of colour.

From Simon Gerbaud's saVer (2015) - image of a shoe cut in half.

It’s hypnotic in a way that’s hard to describe, like staring at a fire—there’s something in the pattern of movement that’s just inherently compelling.

Cut paper painted in pastels, an image of a man wearing thick glasses, a yellow and red checkered shirt and black slacks sits at a desk looking at a typewriter. He is holding his neck in pain from slouching. In the top left of the frame, there is a hand holding the handle of an umbrella.

unlike most cut-out animation, which tends to treat its canvas like a two-dimensional platform, Voltova is more than willing to push her camera angles and distort her perspectives; it makes for a much more dramatic and energetic piece of animation than paper cut-out usually allows.

digital illustration of a blue cat with red eyes pouncing on a black and yellow snake with red eyes and teeth

The CRT glow and chunky lines recall old Amiga art, and the constant morphing between keyframes gives the whole thing an eerie feeling—more of a ghost of technology past than an exercise in nostalgia.

Lori Damiano's film compresses a lot of wisdom into 15 minutes, on the difference between observation and experience, the burdens created by the past and the future, the need for appreciation of simple moments.

Black screen with white text that reads, "EVERYTHING"

It tells you the things the game will let you discover—it can even be useful in showing you the frame of mind the game is meant to be played in—but it's a different piece of art from the game itself.

Bright crayon-illustrated image of a yellow frog-like character at the bottom of the frame with a big open smile and many teeth. The background is bright teal and turquoise stripes coming from the character , and unevent block letters in the same yellow as the character read "BREAK FAST"

Dr. Breakfast isn't exactly normal, but it is straightforward, mixing a crisp, traditionally cartoony style, an easy-to-follow narrative and a sense of humour that's alternately manic and deadpan.

GIRAF19 Awards

NewsNov 25, 2023

We’re proud to share the winners of this year’s jury and audience prizes at GIRAF 19!

Calling all emerging filmmakers: What To Do When You Finish A Film is a resource meant for you whether your work was made in a class, on a kitchen table, or in a dark little studio! From Joanne Fisher's talk during GIRAF19

a point-of-view shot of someone's feet sticking out of the water. The colour palette is very muted. The text below it reads 
"OFFICIAL SELECTION 2012 SUNDANCE FILM FESTIVAL"

The pervasive sense of melancholy, the dream-like story structure, the dark, dry humour; all of them create a mood that's hard to describe and equally hard to forget. 

Image of a cute blue character wear ing a chef hat lifting a large yellow oven spatula into a pizza over in a small cabin.

In his words, it's "a lamentable tragedy mixed full of pleasant mirth," but the mirth is mostly in the contrast between Cross' golden age animation style and his willingness to follow through on a premise to its bitterest conclusion.

Pencil drawing o fa woman holding her face in her hands, her eyes are closed and she has long hair

Sijia Ke's film Pear is based on a true story. Maybe. It's based on a story, in any case — one that Ke was listening to on the radio, despite not speaking the language it was broadcast in.

Illustration of a bird-man wearing a blue-green suit holding a gun of some sort that looks like it's spewing radio waves (colours red, white and blue) into the sky. From One Year, One Film, One Second a Day by the Brothers McLeod

For an entire year, the McLeod's drew one second of animation each day, basing it on something they had seen, heard or read over the course of the day, with a little creative license for good measure.

Three characters are looking off-screen to the right. The leftmost character is a character with an elephant face, and elephant faces for arms. The middle scaracter looks lik ea furry being wearin gan owl mask. The third character has antlers, and three faces stacked on top of each other like a Totem pole

Anne Breymann's 2017 film Nachtstück is, in a word, weird. Not in the hand-wavy, dismissive way that word is often used, as in "that was weird, I don't get it." Nachtstück is weird in a deeper, more unsettling way, the way that horror writer H.P. Lovecraft articulated almost a century ago in his essay Supernatural Horror in Literature

Screenshot of Victoria Vincent's Floatland (2018)
Image of a girl looking at a screen to the left of the frame. She has blue long hair in a ponytail and is holding a game controller. Behind her is a dirty room filled with clothing, bottles, posters, empty bowls, cigarettes and prescription bottles

The range of moods it runs through in just over two-and-a-half minutes is astounding. The fact she can do it in such an intuitively appealing way is why she's an artist you absolutely should be following.

Screenshot from Andy Kennedy's Slow Wave (2016). Image is of a warped bedroom, looking at the bed on a tilt, wiht a night stand next to it. There are two windows on the right wall and a light above the bed. There is a portal directly above the headboard of the bed radiating a bright neon pink that douses the room with its light.

The first half of the film shows the unease that accompanies those restless nights where sleep never seems to come. The second shows that falling asleep isn't always so great, either.

Image of  awoman in a white robe with tassels down her front stands by a birch tree and looking past the camera. The scene is in a forest

The story of a Nishnaabeg youth and elder rescuing a canoe from a museum's collection, it's a direct challenge to the western claim that other culture's artifacts are educational items or historical curiousities.

Heads up - QAS will be hiring! We’ll be looking for up to 4 folks to fill positions in April-August 2023. More details and an official call for applications will be coming soon!

black and white colour scheme. Depicts an establishing shot of an environment with large hills, but with two figures - one with a black body and a white dot on their middle, and one with a white body and a black dot on their middle - sitting on the floor looking at each other.

There's a reason it walked away from our 2017 GIRAF festival with the Audience Favourite award and some of the highest ratings we've ever seen for a short at the fest.

image of a man standing in a room with minimal furniture. A piano, some discarded picture frames. The room is framed as a circle, and we're looking in it from a god-like view above. All in black and white

Split into four parts, the film is somewhere between a visual poem and an expression of philosophy, cycling through acts of creation and destruction, evolution and remembrance. Volcanoes erupt, creatures evolve as sort of whimsical exquisite corpses, the pins that make up the animation dance around the screen in a strangely minimal ballet.

giraf 18 poster. Different creatures on the prairie look up towards a towering pile of giant bugs that spell out "GIRAF 18"

GIRAF18 Awards

NewsNov 30, 2022

We’re proud to share the winners of this year’s jury and audience prizes at GIRAF 18!

preview image for Alan Holly's Coda (2014). A dark green grassy background, with a nude character lying down, surrounded by black bugs. The title "CODA" is next to him, and the rest of the image is taken up by the various awards that "Coda" has won

Its post-life coda can't come close to capturing everything beautiful about life, but that failure is its own argument for life's beauty.