JoAnne is an animator at LoveLove Films, an animation studio based in Bournemouth, and has worked on a range of content including original animated series, TV adverts and broadcast graphis
JoAnne was born with Treacher Collins Syndrome, a genetic condition characterised by deformities of the ears, eyes, cheekbones and chin, which causes breathing problems and hearing difficulties. Never one to let anything get her down, Treacher Collins Syndrome has only spurred JoAnne on, and encouraged her to create beautiful and engaging animated content, including an animated documentary produced by Lovelove Films and commisioned by MoFilm about her journey titled Chin Up.
Throughout her childhood, JoAnne loved to draw herself as heroic characters to escape the insecurity and feeling of being different that came with her condition. However, JoAnne never drew her facial features any differently to fit the scene of a heroic warrior or mystical mermaid.
Chin Up follows JoAnne's story from being 1 in 50,000 babies born with Treacher Collins Syndrome to currently living her dreams as an animator at LoveLove Films. The documentary touches on poignant milestones that have impacted JoAnne and made her the strong and inspirational woman that she is today, highlighting on the female empowerment that is giving 2018 the great ‘Year of Women’ status. JoAnne’s story fits into a much larger story of women in today’s society and the way positive change is happening, and she touches on this with her unique outlook within Chin Up.
Chin Up was narrated, illustrated and animated by JoAnne, giving a true insight to growing up with a visible disability. JoAnne and the LoveLove Films animation team created the documentary with intricate 2D mixed media using childhood photos mixed in with beautiful and colourful illustrations and animation.
Chin Up went live as part of the MoFIlm Many Voices campaign on 23rd August 2018, with a feature in Campaign magazine which can be read here; https://www.campaignlive.co.uk/article/chin-up-uplifting-story-rebel-creatives/1490074
Since the success of Chin Up, and receiving touching messages from people with and parents of people with disabilities telling her how the documentary has moved them and helped them on their own journey of self acceptance. JoAnne is a central part of the LoveLove Films' team, and is now helping to develop diverse and inspiring content for children and adults alike.
Aside from producing Chin Up and other animated content, JoAnne also speaks at workshops, talks and panels, including two panels for Animated Women UK with women from Disney, Turner, Blue Zoo and Jellyfish.
JoAnne said of Chin Up: "I have learned that being different is not always about outside appearances, it can be on the inside too and everyone wants to feel accepted. I hope that people, no matter of age, gender, race or ability, will be inspired to know that they can be whatever they want to be."
You can watch Chin Up here: https://vimeo.com/286156799