By Sean Shagaran
Aiming to bring cheer to the special needs community in Singapore and motivate them during the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic last year, NTU alumna Khoo Siew May (ADM/2014) and her teammate Jay Septimo collaborated with non-profit inclusive arts movement Superhero Me to produce an animation titled One More Time.
Crafted as a letter of encouragement to people with special needs during Singapore’s Circuit Breaker, the animation features the voices of individuals with special needs and tells how they struggled with isolation, but were united by a shared sense
“The aim of the film was not just to spread a message of hope, but to empower the special needs community by letting them speak, and encourage them to remain hopeful, just as they are with their newfound resilience through this hard time we're all in,” said Siew May.
For their work, Siew May and Jay won the prestigious D&AD Graphite Pencil award – an accolade that celebrates creative excellence in design and advertising. “Winning this award affirms that the special needs community's voices have been heard by the world and people are inspired by their strength,” said Siew May. “This award is for them.”
To produce the piece, Siew May and her partner met with members of the special needs community. They met Javier, a young boy who spoke about his personal experiences dealing with lockdown restrictions. Astounded by his amount of positivity and how
he coped with having to drastically adjust his everyday life, Siew May believes it was through him that she learnt “to never forget about hope and looking forward to meeting together again in person.”
Watch the award-winning animation.