My first time in Naga

Naga City, 11.23.10 - Located at the southeast tail of Luzon is the Bicol Region. Me, my sister Eldee, and my cousin Wella is currently in Naga City to attend the annual Philippine Animation Festival called ANIMAHENASYON. It's me and my sister's first time here in the region. Last monday, we went here by plane via Manila. Upon arrival, we were welcomed by Wella's cousin and travelled to the city proper by bus. We arrived at SM Naga and did some errands for a while. Then we hired a tricycle to bring us to the place where we will stay for the week. The fare here is much cheaper than in Zamboanga. Our boarding house is just near Ateneo de Naga University where the festival will happen. It is a boarding house where Wella stayed for one semester when she studied there. We left our bags and went back to SM and spent the rest of the night shopping and eating. We went back to the boarding house and rested.

The next day is the Opening Program of Animahenasyon held at the Arrupe Auditorium of ADNU. I was with my buddy-buddy Coline during the whole time. The opening ceremony was very different compared last year. Before, we just had dinner, opened the exhibit and had a short program at the cinema followed by the screening of the opening films. Now, it was formal more like the programs we had in school with keynote speakers, cultural and national dance numbers, awards and more. Every year Animahenasyon gives a lifetime achievement to a personality who had contributed or influenced a lot in the Philippine industry. This year, the award was given to Mr. Roque Federizon Lee, better known as Roxlee, pioneer of independent film animation. His style is known for his spontaneity and surreal sense of humor. Although he haven't worked as an animator for a company, his independent approach to filmmaking has influenced a lot of animators. During the whole week of Animahenasyon, his paintings will be exhibited at the Arrupe Auditorium. His book "Planet of the Noses" is also up for sale.

In the afternoon, we had a conference with the department head of one of the best animation schools in the world, Goblins, l'ecole de l'image, France. Mr. Eric Riewer talked about teaching animation in Gobelins and showed us the works of their students. Gobelins is known for its competitiveness and quality in choosing its students. A three year course in Animation includes 2 years of 2d animation and 1 year of 3d animation. Every year they have hundreds of applicants but only the top 25 will be allowed to study there. These students should be excellent in the basics of drawing. Usually, they are graduates of fine arts who has the expertise in drawing anatomies and perspectives to name a few.

Aside from its excellent students, they also had the best teachers, none other than the best professionals in the animation industry. Gobelins is known for their affiliation many animation companies in the world. Mr. Riewer showed us a lot of their student works and my favorites are the opening bumpers that they make for the animation festival called ANNECY. They were truly the best not only in drawing but also in story telling, design, technical aspects and more. How i wish to be one of the 25 students who will be privileged to study there. But i guess i have to take courses on Fine Arts and learn French first. Oh yeah, they use French in school.

After the very inspiring talk, we went to the auditorium to watch the screening of the competition entries of Animahenasyon. We saw the best works from the previous years and also the entries in the professional division. I will talk about it later and i may give some reviews about the films.

 Tired and hungry, coline and i went to the centro from ADNU through a tricycle for only 7 pesos per person. Ate and Wella was waiting for us so we could have dinner together. As we were walking in the centro grounds, we took some photos at the church and plaza where a rally was ongoing. It is the anniversary of the Maguindanao Massacre which is sad and i clearly remember a year ago where we were at Manila attending last year's Animahenasyon. It was a sad feeling watching the news at the mall when we were having dinner that time. Anyways, going back to our dinner, we had a yummy dinner at the Bigg's Diner just beside the plaza/park. The restaurant is beautiful, decorated with vintage stuffs like old bicycles, vinyl records, gramophones and Elvis Presley posters. It is a place that you should really go when you're in Naga especially if you love vintage and retro-pop art.

Then we headed to Starbucks to have some frappes and update our facebook accounts. This day is really fun, inspiring, and nostalgic. The week is still long and we still have a lineup of activities ahead. As of now, i will enjoy my stay in Naga and whenever i have the opportunity, i will write more about my experiences here. Dios Mabalos!

Why don't you read my next post! Read it here!
Thanks to Gerard Asay for some of the photos!

1 comment

Skeeper said...

oh wow! nice experience! :D be thankful kuya and congrats ;)

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