A stop-animation video designed to raise awareness of the environmental impact of cheap clothing earned three Centennial Collegiate students the grand prize in the Focus! Climate Change video contest sponsored by The Kimberley Foundation.
"Fast Fashion," created by Braelynn Simpson, Kayla Greig and Jenna Read, claimed the $5,000 top prize and earned an additional $2,500 that goes toward Centennial Collegiate for acquisitions that support the school's art and science programs or its library. The trio received their award during a recent gala event in Vancouver.
Their video can be viewed on the Kimberly Foundation website.
"Over consumption of cheap clothing is a large problem in society," says the students' submission. "Fast fashion companies are constantly creating new stylish clothing sold for extremely cheap prices. These cheap prices result in poor quality clothing that lives a very short life, often ending up in the landfill.
"The clothing industry is the second-largest polluter in the world, only second to oil. Many people are not aware of the impact fast fashion has on the environment, so we made our video on this topic to raise awareness and to encourage others to be aware of where your clothing is coming from and the impact it has on the environment."
The video uses characters and backgrounds created from felt fabric to illustrate through stop-motion photography how the online purchase of low-cost clothing creates an environmental ripple.
Production methods, labour practices, shipping and the way in which convenient access to cheap clothing spurs consumerism all have consequences for the environment. The video concludes by illustrating the disposable aspect of "fast fashion" as a truck dumps unwanted clothes on to a growing pile of garbage.
The contest asked Grade 8-12 students from Canadian schools to submit a video on the subject of climate change from perspectives such as the social, scientific, technological, environmental, economic or the architectural impacts of climate change, and/or the Indigenous or traditional knowledge.
Entrants were encouraged to think creatively about the story they wish to tell and how it could have an impact by raising awareness, changing perspectives, or calling viewers to action.
Located in Vancouver, the goal of the Kimberly Foundation is to promote learning, inspire curiosity about the world and support activities and pursuits that create environmentally responsible change. The FOCUS! Climate Change Video Competition has run for two years and during that time it has received more than 260 films, from over 650 students.