A gentle drama about a young girl who endures life in the face of anticipatory loss.

Technical Specs:

6 Minutes    |    35mm [1.66:1]
Color    |    Animated (Ink on Paper)


Director/Producer: Andy Collen
Written by: Amy Blumenstein-Collen & Andy Collen
Art Director: Amy Blumenstein-Collen
Animated by: Kyle Jones
Illustrated by: Steve Hess
Music & Sound: Scott Brasher-IV Group & Greg Ives
Composited by: Andy Collen and Chad Essley

Additional Information:

To learn more about Winter and filmmakers Andy Collen and Amy Blumenstein-Collen, please visit the following web sites:

Still photo from the animated motion picture Winter

Still photo from the animated motion picture Winter
© 2004 Happy Trails Animation, LLC

Still photo from the animated motion picture Winter
© 2004 Happy Trails Animation, LLC

Still photo from the animated motion picture Winter

Still photo from the animated motion picture Winter
© 2004 Happy Trails Animation, LLC

Review of Winter by the BMPA Founders (Warning--Contains Spoilers):

Winter, an animated short by Andy Collen and Amy Blumenstein-Collen, stands as a reminder in today’s film world—a world dominated by computer-generated explosions and pop soundtracks—that narrative filmmaking is about telling a story. Winter captures a morning in the life of a young girl with a sick, bedridden mother. As the young girl tends to her mother, the family dog asks to go outside. The young girl takes her pet for a walk and returns with a gift for her mother. When her mother fails to respond, the young girl fears the worst.

With no dialogue, this pen-and-ink, animated tale subtly filters this winter morning through the eyes of its main character. Illustrated with carefully chosen low and high-angle shots, we are able to see both how large the world appears to her and how small she appears in her surroundings. Moreover, the detail given to her actions—her need to use two hands to move her mother’s arm, for example, and the matter-of-fact way she contends with a banister out of reach—help define her place in the world around her.

Andy Collen, Amy Blumenstein-Collen, and their team have put together a motion picture that is more than simply well-crafted. Its touching, intimate story, without the inclusion of so much as one spoken word, is both a rarity in modern film and a much-needed reminder that filmmaking is first and foremost a visual medium.

About the Filmmakers:

Andy Collen

Andy Collen began his career at the age of 13, selling his meticulously detailed clay sculptures at a local gallery in Aspen, Colorado. An interest in the art of animation led Andy to Los Angeles where he gained industry experience as a production assistant for Terry Thoren at Expanded Entertainment (now CEO at the animation studio of Klaspy Csupo, Inc.)

Intrigued by the growing number of independent animators in Portland, Oregon, Andy relocated to the Northwest where he completed an apprenticeship with Tom Arndt of Merlin's Hammer Studio. This hands-on experience with commercial animation and special effects gave Andy the skills to freelance with companies such as Vinton Studios (California Raisins) and Blashfield & Associates (creator of the mixed-media music videos such as Tears For Fears' "Sowing the Seeds of Love" and Michael Jackson's "Leave Me Alone").

Now with the studio of Happy Trails Animation, Andy directs eye-catching commercials and independent films. His extensive background in visual effects, technology, and the art of animation, help drive the studio's commitment to generating original, inspiring productions.

Amy Blumenstein-Collen

Amy Collen is an accomplished art director and production manager with an animator's sensibility.

She discovered the art of animation in 1984 while earning her BFA from the Pacific NW College of Art. After completing an ink and watercolor short film ("Bob's Choice") Amy began pursuing a career in what is now a lifelong relationship with the moving image. After apprenticing with independent animator Joanna Priestley in Portland, Oregon, Amy worked as an independent contractor on commercial projects such as Texas Lottery, Nike ACG, Fanta, Blueberry Pop Tarts, and Sesame Street. In addition, Amy taught animation to young people through the Northwest Film Center's Filmmakers In Schools program.

Now with Happy Trails Animation, Amy draws from her fine arts background and experience to enhance production efficiency and quality control.

Photography by Maureen