Simón Wilches Castro won two awards at the 2013 Adobe Design Achievement Awards, one for “Best Animation” as well as the “Grand Prize” in the Film & Motion category. His film, Semáforo, which was made during his first year at USC, was selected from thousands of entries in Adobe’s competition for cutting-edge projects created with Adobe software.

Simón is a Colombian animator who has been creating experimental animation and political satire for 7 years. He’s the creator of and “The Little Tyrant” webseries. Studied Animation in Cuba and was selected as international jury for the 10th ed of Animadrid. Was awarded the FULBRIGHT Scholarship on 2010. Simón is currently an MFA student at John C. Hench Division of Animation at USC. Since his arrival to L.A, he has been nominated for a Student Academy Award and awarded a Graduate Teaching assistant position by the Institute of Media Literacy for CNTV 101 on 2012

Amongst an illuminated Colombian stoplight, a beautiful circus act becomes a terrifying freak show

Communication Objective:
Due to ongoing war amidst the Colombian jungle, many people are forced to flee their rural towns, in search of refuge in capital cities. Their only means of earning money, is to host shows, under the city’s street lights. Some dress up like clowns, or do acrobatics, while others spit fire or juggle. Some show the only thing they have left – deformities and amputations, in exchange for sympathatic coins. This is the life of the people that live under a street lights, and the people who watch them.

Simon painted every sequence, frame-by-frame, with Photoshop Brushes and the animation timeline. Simon did the final comp of sequences in after effects, did the sound design in audition and the final render in premiere. All the sequence file handling was done by Bridge.

Adobe Tools:
Adobe Premiere Pro CS6, After Effects CS6, Audition CS6, Bridge CS6, Photoshop CS5 Extended

Simón’s special thanks:
I want to thank my parents and my friends. My mentor Carlos Santa in Colombia, Kathy Smith at USC and the wonderful faculty and staff at John C. Hench Division of Animation and Digital Arts. Fulbright, Colfuturo and everyone that has contributed with their support and opinions to the making of this project.


Read more at the Adobe Design Achievement Awards site