by Tom McSorley
TAKE ONE, March-June 2004

Ottawa independent filmmaker and animator Dan Sokolowski continues his remarkably kinetic combinations of oil-on-glass animation and live action in his latest work, LIGHTYEAR (see his 2001 film (winter)time and others). The images for the film were shot over a one-year period around Sokolowski's rural home near Kemptville, Ontario. LIGHTYEAR is divided into 12 sections based on the number of new moons, Twelve is a continuing theme with each section having 12 photographic images and then a corresponding animation that last for 12 frames, so that each segment lasts 1 second, and each moon 12 seconds. Shot on an animation stand and made without edits, this rhythmic hybridized étude celebrates the natural world and questions our aesthetic responses to it. Echoing generations of Canadian artists, writers, musicians and filmmakers, Sokolowski keeps asking: How do we interpret and express the landscape we find ourselves in? Unpretentious and searching, located somewhere between the live-action/animations of Norman McLaren, the temporal investigations of Jack Chambers and the image interrogations of David Rimmer, the work of Dan Sokolowski is both building and furnishing its own distinctive and distinguished home in the Canadian landscape.