Saturday, 25 October 2014
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A novel project

Sir Salman Rushdie’s new children’s novel, Luka and the Fire of Life will be brought to life through the animations of four Kingston University students.

Rushdie was part of a judging panel which invited ten students from the faculty of art, design and architecture to present ideas for the book.

Kingston University, 3 characters from Luka and the Fire of Life.

by Sam Falconer, Kingston University, three characters from Luka and the Fire of Life.

Luka and The Fire of Life is the story of 12 year old Luka Khalifa’s quest to steal ‘the fire of life’ and revive his father Rashid from a deep sleep. 

Senior lecture of animation at the university, Damian Gascoigne says Rushdie was ‘extremely receptive to some very individual interpretations of the figures from the book’.

He adds, ‘Projects like this are the life blood of art and design at universities. They’re exactly what the students most want and invaluable to the relevance of our teaching at Kingston University.’

Queen Soraya by Yao Xiang

Queen Soraya by Yao Xiang

Yao Xiang was chosen for capturing the best character design. The Chinese student says she didn’t use any traditional Chinese techniques and only Russian inks for the project.

Yao Xiang, Kingston University BA Animation Student - with Queen Soraya

Yao Xiang, Kingston University BA Animation Student, with Queen Soraya

Sarah Maycock designed five characters – including the companions of Luka, a bear named Dog and a dog named Bear - and was commended for her illustration technique, but her work will not be taken forward.

SARAH MAYCOCK, Kingston University, 2 illustrations from Luka and the Fire of Life

by Sarah Maycock, Kingston University, 2 illustrations from Luka and the Fire of Life

Four visual concepts by Yao, Sam Falconer, Ben Tobitt and Jun Hyoung Chun will now be made into animations, shown on the Random House website and YouTube. Rushdie will chose the overall winner on 21 December.

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