Let’s talk trash

Hannah Drew collecting sea lettuce at Kulim Park. Photo: Bruce Barnard.

If your trash could talk, what would it say? The trash in Hannah Drew’s 30-second videos is telling us a very important message.

In one 30-second stop-motion video, a discarded can of soft drink receives help from animated litter which helps the can climb into the rubbish bin – and applause follows.

“That generates a laugh, which I think instantly engages people,” says Hannah. “They can laugh with a group of people and go away and think there was a serious message there.

“It’s that lighter approach rather than heavy reading material. Something that’s quick, funny and straight to the point – that’s more memorable.”

The 30-year-old has created three humorous 30-second stop-motion videos to help generate not only laughs, but discussions about caring for the environment.

The videos are part of the Bachelor of Creative Industries Year 2 Body of Work and will hopefully be chosen to be shown in Mainstreet Tauranga and BOP Polytechnic’s Students in the City exhibition series at the pop-up gallery Project Room at 63 Spring St.

Rubbish is one of Hannah’s three key issues surrounding Tauranga Harbour. And how do you get people to be serious about litter, oil spill disasters and stinky sea lettuce? Make them laugh.

That’s the Bay of Plenty Polytechnic graphic design student’s plan. But it’s no joke.

“My project is not about taking a stance, but getting people to further engage with their local environment,” says Hannah.

“My whole project is based around humour. I think humour is a massive tool to help engage the audience.

“They [the videos] are all centred on one little character with googly eyes. They’re only 30 seconds each but they make you fall in love with this little character.”

The project titled ‘Investigate’ challenges Year 2 graphic design students to explore issues currently facing Tauranga Harbour.

“We had to research things that were effecting how we use it either from regional council perspective or a Maori perspective,” says Hannah.

“From there we had to create some sort of response that helped highlight those issues and make the harbour better in some way.”

In three stop-motion videos, Hannah’s highlighted three key issues including oil spill disasters, litter, and sea lettuce.

“Basically, oil spills are just nasty and no-one wants them. But what I find is that with the Rena, a lot of people have kind of forgotten about it because you can’t see the Rena itself anymore.

“Discussions are happening behind closed doors now and yet it’s still really effecting our environment and local Maori as well.”

Hannah encourages residents to dig deeper into what could solve the issues of smelly sea lettuce that’s washed ashore, instead of turning their noses at it.

“It’s the same with litter, people know you shouldn’t do it but people still do. Maybe it’s a responsibility of others to pick it up if you see it, rather than saying: ‘That’s terrible’ and walking away.”

The ‘Investigate’ exhibition is at The Project Room, 63 Spring St, on November 26-December 4. The opening event is Thursday, November 26, from 5pm-7pm. The exhibition will open 10am-2pm Thursday-Saturday.

For more information, visit www.boppoly.ac.nz/bci

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