Shadow Stories is a 4 minute animated film which takes 18 objects from Shrewsbury Museum and Art Gallery’s pre-historic gallery and weaves them into a story of human endeavour and society over the 10,000 years between the end of the last ice age and the arrivals of the Romans in Britain. The film makers used expert opinion and advice from archaeologists about how each object may have been used and what its significance may have been. In the end though, the film makers had to work with the traces of people who left the only imprint of their existence in the objects that they held dear – intangible shadows hinting at the larger picture. For this reason the human figures in the film remain shadowy and undefined, often depicted in silhouette. The objects themselves take centre stage in the film whilst their presence in the surrounding cases anchors them in both the past and the present.
Samantha Moore, working with four animators from the West Midlands region, directed the film. All the animators got the chance to visit the museum and handle the objects which gave them an insight into how the objects would have been used. The animation was done entirely digitally, working to the score composed by Bastien Keb (bastienkebmusic[at]hotmail.com).