The video is a film of Sullivan flipping through an incredibly well-designed pop-up book the combines inspiring slogans with demonstrations of their techniques. He also created a series of posters to be used alongside it (see here and here).
We sat down with O'Sullivan to find out more about how the book and film were developed.
DA: Have you ever created something like this before?
ROS: Prior to the project, I had always wanted to try my hand at this sort of thing. I have an admiration for people who can create tangible pieces of art and design out of the simplest materials such as paper.
DA: How did you arrive at the idea of a pop-up book?
ROS: Basically it started from the original concept for the Rethink Scholarship. To apply, students are asked to fill a classic black sketchbook in any way they want, they can even take it apart and rebuild it into something totally different.
So we wanted to show what we did with ours, with the hope that we’d inspire others to show us what they can do. We also wanted to show that you don’t have to fill an entire book with just sketches – think bigger than just the page.
DA: How difficult was the book to construct?
ROS: It was more difficult to construct than I initially suspected! I started off with one sketchbook that was just bursting with stuff. This was a problem when it came to performing the take -- as it's live and not stop motion.
The pieces started to bust out of the book and become messy after a few takes. So I, begrudgingly, divided it into two books. We switch books in the glow in the dark scene – which is why that tip is sort of in the middle. Also, for practical reasons certain pages like ‘impressions’ were placed back in after I constructed them.
DA: How did you create the 'Leave an impression with your audience' reveal?
ROS: That took a long time. I cut letter forms out of thick illustration board (a few mm thick). Then pushed the letters into the paper, leaving the impression -- basically a manual emboss. At first, that page was just going to be filmed straight through -- but when we got it on film the white on white emboss totally disappeared because of the bright lighting we used.