Our sand animation of "The Village of Kepuhi", started in 2015 as a project in Object Animation, a second-year, undergraduate class I teach at the University of the Arts (UArts), Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States. The aim of the class is to explore the movement design possibilities of different media, including paper cutout, pixilation, stop-motion puppets, sand, and other materials. In the spring of 2015 we decided to tell an entire story using sand animation. Although not fully realized, UArts students Haley Monson and Mee Choe spent many hours on the film after the original class deadline and the result serves as a motivating glimpse into what the final project could be.
"The Village of Kepuhi" is a Hawaiian legend involving an eel, aumakua of the village of Kepuhi on the island of Moloka'i, an aging chief, and a young couple. It teaches respect, wisdom, and community in a Hawaiian cultural context. Text from Caren Loebel-Fried's "Hawaiian Legends of Dreams" was used in this initial iteration.
Assistant Professor, Animation
University of the Arts
Philadelphia, PA, United States