Books Stop Motion Project

A look at my collection of books through stop motion animation, created for a time-based communications class.


We live in an era of consumerism and mass production, where hardly any of our possessions are truly unique. Thousands or millions of people may have the exact same phone, the same shirt, or the same frying pan. But owning an object can make it seem very personal. The more time we spend with something, the more it becomes a reflection of ourselves instead of a simple copy of a manufactured product. No two people’s collections of belongings are exactly the same, and even one individual’s possessions will vary as time progresses. In this way, the property of any given person functions as a sort of material fingerprint. I chose to explore this idea by examining a subsection of my own possessions, my collection of books.


This project was filmed in my bedroom with the help of a single studio light, a DSLR, and hours of patience. In total, the final stop motion consisted of over 550 individual photographs. This does not include the many photos I captured of books in the process of falling over, refusing to stay open, or refusing to stay closed. Eventually I resorted to using paperclips to resolve some of these issues, which were kindly edited out for me by talented VFX artist and designer Henry Wilkinson.


I used Premiere Pro to add title cards and text for clarity. I aimed for these to be as plain as possible, and to give only a sparse amount of information. Because of the concept behind this project, I wanted my collection of books to speak for itself and to appear with minimal context. The plain text also matched the look of my set, which was purposefully simple and generic.