The phrase “labor of love” is used to cover all manner of undertakings, but occasionally you come across a creative project that really justifies that tag. Loving Vincent is the world’s first fully painted animation film, created by Dorota Kobiela and Hugh Welchman. It tells the story of Armand Roulin, a postman on a mission to deliver one of the last letters Dutch painter Vincent van Gogh wrote before his death.
The numbers alone are astonishing. 125 classically-trained oil painters, reimagining 94 famous van Gogh paintings, with just under 67,000 individual frames. But the technical aspects of creating the paintings and turning live-action scenes into animation only tell part of the story. The huge achievement of Loving Vincent is in its ability to translate the emotional pull that makes van Gogh so loved around the world and to render his work – both famous and lesser-known – into cinematic visuals.
Watch the behind-the-scenes video below to get a sense of how this truly unique film came together.