World Festival of Animated Film /
short film edition 3 - 8 June 2014
World Festival of Animated Film / short film edition 3 - 8 June 2014
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Grand Competition Jury   |   Emma de Swaef


Emma was born in 1985 in Ghent, Belgium and studied Documentary Filmmaking at the St. Lukas Academy in Brussels. She decided to use her knitting and craft skills in her graduation film Soft Plants. The short introduces the character of a chubby office-worker Willy. In 2012 she brought Willy back to life in the animated short film Oh Willy... made together with the filmmaker Marc James Roels, produced by the Beast Animation studio in Belgium. It premiered at the Clermont-Ferrand Film Festival and has garnered more than 80 international awards such as the Grand Prix Animafest Zagreb, Grand Prix at the ITFS Stuttgart, and the 2012 Cartoon d’Or, as well as being nominated for a César. 

Emma also works as a director and character designer for commercials, most recently designing and animating a little man made out of sugar cubes for a Belgian sugar brand. In 2013 she designed the title sequence of Belgian feature documentary Behind the Redwood Curtain by Liesbeth De Ceulaer. She teaches stop-motion workshops at the KASK animation film department in Ghent as well as in schools across Europe. Emma and Marc are currently developing a new short in the same technique.