A T R A I L O F L I E S
Narrated by Chris Packham
Voiced by Peter Egan
Directed, produced and Animated by Ben Sinclair
Written by Ben Sinclair and Keep the Ban
Music and Sound Design by Ben Sinclair
A 6 minute animation highlighting the absrudity of trail hunting and how it has been a smokescreen for illegal hunting across the UK for over 17 years. By animating how a trail hunt can so easily become a fox hunt, and bringing back into focus the leaked hunting office webinars, I hope this film encourages viewers to help non profits like Keep the Ban end this cruelty.
B E H I N D T H E S C E N E S
The whole process of making this film and animating this message was such a cathartic experience and I enjoyed trying to make every second as informative and emotive as possible. Animated in TVpaint, there was a huge amount of hand drawn animation to get through, as I wanted the film to feel as physical and tangible as possible, in order to get across the realities of a fox hunt. This meant using lots of reference footage of foxes, hounds, horses and so on, to make the animation of each character feel as real as possible, whilst at the same time avoiding any true to life gore and graphic details, so that all audiences can watch it. The power and endless possibilities of animation can also really help people understand the nuances in certain issues. For example, by animating the trail layer in bright smoke, viewers can distinguish it to the darker orange of the fox's real scent, helping people understand the crux of how a trail hunt can so easily become a fox hunt.
To break up the amount of digital animation I was doing on a cintiq, I decided to create the backgrounds in ink and pastel paintings. I scanned each painting in, cleaned it up digitally and animated over the top. I wanted each environment to feel instantly familiar and homely to UK viewers who love the countryside, from the dense woodlands to the open fields - to remind people that this barbaric sport is still happening in our backyard. To have such a horrible act happen in such a beautiful landscape is a real tragedy in our modern society, and I hope the juxtaposition of visuals in this film shows that.