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3D Animated Documentary Explores Various Perceptions of Time

SVA continues its series highlighting some of the many outstanding projects by 2017 Alumni Scholarship Award winners. Next up is MFA Computer Art student Ninaad Kulkarni on his 3D animated documentary KCLOC, which explores the way people perceive time and how that changes depending on age, culture and profession.

Tell us about your project. What inspired the idea?

KCLOC is a 3D animated documentary on people’s perceptions of time. A selection of brief interviews provide the voices for 10 meticulously designed CGI clock characters, in a variety of real-world settings, as they respond to a single question: “What does time mean to you?”

My fascination towards the idea of time and its perpetual nature goes far back. I decided to contribute to this vast, sometimes mysterious, subject and dedicate my thesis project at SVA to exploring time and how people perceive it differently.

During this journey, I came across many beautiful readings and documentations. One quote that stuck with me through the project was by Marie von Ebner-Eschenbach: “Even a broken clock is right twice a day.”

What most surprised you once you started working on the project?

I understood the vastness of the topic I had chosen and I very well knew that I am not a scientist who has factual views about science, but reading enough about the subject gave me the understanding I required to portray my vision and idea of time. In addition, I researched and wrote a thesis paper on the evolution of time keeping, which gave me a solid base to build upon.

The documentary format of the project provided an opportunity for me to have a dialogue with many people from different backgrounds. I was amazed at how many ways there are to look at this thing we call “time.” It was then I decided this is the exact aspect of time that I want to talk about and further explore in my three-minute film.

What advice do you have for next year’s students going through your program?

This might be the last chance to do a truly personal project for some individuals, so I would encourage them to enjoy this free environment and to share their own experiences and stories through this student project.

Was there a teacher or class that was essential for you?

Yes there was, Trilby Schreiber taught the class for thesis writing I & II. Trilby was not only a wonderful teacher but also an inspiring mentor and friend, without whom this thesis project wouldn't have been possible. Her incredible experience and immeasurable visual literacy is just the surface of what she has to bring to her students. I find myself extremely lucky to have had her with me through my entire two years at SVA MFACA and to have had her as a strong mentor on my thesis film.

This year, a record 78 students were chosen from a pool of over 300 applicants, and were awarded scholarships worth more than $83,000 for projects as varied as narrative film, animation, painting and sculpture. For more information about the Alumni Scholarship Awards and to see a complete list of this year's recipients, click here.

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