National Storyboard Competition Winner
On Library Day last year, we were fortunate to receive a visit from celebrated author Ali Sparkes, who spoke about her career as a writer and inspired a number of our students to develop their own creative writing skills. Many of our students are fans of her work, including the popular ‘Shapeshifter’ series of novels.
In July, we received the very exciting news that Cerys Nolte (8K) had entered and won a national competition to dream up a trailer for the new book in this adventure series – ‘Feather and Fang’. Ali Sparkes visited Oakbank to announce the good news and to unveil Cerys’ winning storyboard, which had been turned into a professional book trailer. The trailer was launched to Oakbank students as a world exclusive preview. Ali also gave a highly entertaining talk about the whole series and the inspiration for her writing.
“I’m a huge fan of Ali Sparkes and the ‘Shapeshifter’ series. I have always loved fantasy and adventure stories and 'Shapeshifter' is both. There are six books in the Shapeshifter series and I have read them all (twice) as well as the five books in the spin-off series 'Unleashed'.
I found out about a nationwide competition to create a storyboard for the Shapeshifter series to celebrate the 10 year anniversary of the publication of the first book called 'Finding the Fox'. There was a template to download from the website with a number of blank boxes where I had to create the images and then the final box had to have the words "the wait is over". I decided to use drawings and words to create my story and then on the back of the sheet I wrote a lot of director's notes so that it would be filmed in the way I envisaged - Ali said afterwards that she particularly liked these notes.
The inspiration for my design came from the way Ali writes which allows me to picture the characters and the scenes clearly in my imagination and develop these ideas into a design. I also looked at the trailers for some of her other books on the website to make sure I was thinking along the right path.
The way I discovered I had won was a real surprise. Ali Sparkes came into school to talk about her new book "Feather and Fang" and towards the end of her presentation, she mentioned a recent competition she'd run to see who could create the best storyboard for a trailer. She then said that someone at Oakbank and sitting in the hall had won it and I started to think that there may be a chance it was me. She called my name and I had to go to the front of the hall whilst everyone was clapping and cheering. She then showed us all the trailer but at that point it wasn't quite finished as they were still going to add some finishing touches.
I felt a rush of excitement seeing what was in my head brought to life on the screen. But I also felt a bit embarrassed as I was in front of everybody and my parents were there making a fuss of me. It was a happy and proud moment, especially as I was meeting Ali Sparkes, who I hugely admire, in real life.”
Cerys Nolte (8K)
Congratulations to Cerys on her winning design - it is definitely a worthy winner.
You can view the trailer by clicking the play button below!