May 10, 2016

The Life of Death from Marsha Onderstijn on Vimeo.

Death is a subject that many of us visit in our lives, it is a theme most of us deal with in graveness. This year many great artists passed including Prince, Phife Dawg and David Bowie reminding us of the transient nature of life. In mythology, Death is often humanized as a dark entity with a bit of life that has to do his or her job.


The Life of Death, hand-drawn animation by Marsha Onderstijin, an animator from the Netherlands, follows Death in a unique way, illustrating death as a cute specter wearing a skull. Death seems very much in love with life, as he befriends a death on his journey, while taking the lives of a bunny. There is a prolonged sense of longing as Death projects a sense of loneliness. Everything Death touches, dies.

It's a rarity nowadays to see an animation with such depth, yet simplicity. The concept that Death is in love with life is an interesting subject that is playful and unique to explore.This version of Death is softer than most, metaphorically relating a more ‘human’ side of Death. It would make sense that Death is a sad spirit, with a unquenchable desire for contact and communication. We fear and hate the idea of death, if everyone hated you it would color your character strangely as well.


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