Today’s Cartoon Brew Pick is a minute-long series of adorable vignettes titled My Mu from animator Sonnyé Lim, an artist that we profiled back in 2013.
The short, or collection of micro-shorts, unspool in a world where plants can become sentient creatures. Mu, a radish brought to sentience with the love and care of a human companion, has a special power that allows it to bring happiness to the plants around them.
Small clips that fit together aesthetically but without a linear narrative seem to be a result of Lim’s process, which she explained to Cartoon Brew saying, “My method of working is fairly non-linear and spontaneous. Too much planning often gets me stuck and the work ends up stiff and uninspiring. This makes the world of My Mu surprising and exciting, even for me!”
Lim did the rough animation digitally before shifting to physical methods for line and color, which she says is the fastest way she’s found to get the results she’s looking for. On My Mu, she used crayons.
“The medium provided the ideal texture for My Mu, and it was also considered one of the safest options since I work in a low-ventilated setting,” she said, although that’s not a hard and fast rule.
“Crayon is my preferred method, but I will use just about any medium that I feel will best fit the needs of the animation production,” she continued. “One short could be made entirely digital, watercolor or inks, or maybe even stop-motion.”
The use of crayons mixed with some playful camera work gives the film a particular texture that creates the impression a viewer could touch their screen and their fingers would come away feeling waxy. There is also a fun reference in the “Dandy Lions” vignette to Henri Matisse’s “La Danse.”
Recently, Crayola announced it is launching its own production outfit, and it might make sense for them to reach out to Lim.
In the meantime, she’s got another short coming out soon titled HAPPY GREEN, which is a three-minute backstory for some of the characters that will be appearing in My Mu soon, so keep an eye out.