Losing someone who has always been at your side, from the very beginning of your life, is completely devastating. It leaves an emptiness in one’s soul that can never be filled by a substitute, no matter how good it is. We share the same paths for a while, but in the end, everyone has their own separate destination – only memories can live forever. ‘Radiance‘, a short animated film by ChiaLing Yang, tells its creator’s personal story of coping with the loss of a beloved someone in her life: her grandmother.
This short film, which clocks in at about two minutes and thirty seconds of runtime, is a beautiful project that tells its story through hand drawn characters and environments. The chromatic style suits the bleak atmosphere like a glove, and the resulting atmosphere is further contoured by a beautiful soundtrack composed by WenGu Hu. The director manages to strike a perfect balance between the key elements on display, as well as with regard to the project’s theme and pace. It strays away from being overly-dramatic and instead opts for a much more refined approach to a truly heartwarming conclusion.
Entire novels can be written on one’s relationship with someone dear to them. Likewise, feelings, emotions and impossible dreams can be condensed in a few simple yet meaningful scenes. ‘Radiance’ fits in the latter category: it does not tell a story, but instead visualizes emotions. Sadness on the one hand, but also deep, everlasting love and gratitude on the other. While it does not break any storytelling or creativity boundaries, it is readily apparent that each frame is drawn with much love and this sincerity makes this short animated film a beautiful experience – one that abundantly offers the possibility of reflection the timely character of life, despite its limited runtime.