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Miss Ellie Land

Senior Lecturer and Admissions Tutor

Department: Arts

International award-winning filmmaker Ellie Land uses animation and moving images to explore Issues such as femininity, gender politics, education and identity.

Ellie -Land -2

Ellie Land is an international award winning animation director and senior lecturer in animation at Northumbria University. She practices and undertakes research in the fields of animation and documentary.

Her work is renowned for portraying difficult subject matters using animation. Bold and innovative, her films are rooted in collaboration with those her films are about.

Ellie's body of work has been showcased at international animation festivals such as Ottowa, Hiroshima, and Fantoche (Basel) and have been curated at exhibitions at the V&A and ICA.  She is represented by the British Council.

Ellie’s films stimulate and provide material for debate. She has spoken at the Society for Animation Studies conference, Melbourne, and film festivals such as Open City Docs (London) and Tricky Women (Vienna). Her animated documentary Centrefold (2012) was requested by the Austrian government to screen alongside a Q&A with the director at the Women’s Bodies Politics Conference (Vienna) in 2012 and at the British Science Festival Newcastle in 2013.

Ellie frequently collaborates with researchers in health and medicine. Her recent film Breech (2015), made in collaboration with Dr Rebecca Say, was funded by the National Institute for Health Research.

Her most recent work, Sleepless (2015), stems from a two year dialogue with circadian biologist Professor Peter Oliver and uses animation to explore the links between mental health and disrupted sleep. The film will be released in February 2016 as part of the touring program, Silent Signal, commissioned by Animate Projects and supported by the Wellcome Trust.

Ellie is currently working with with director Iain Cunningham on the part-animated feature documentary, Irene’s Ghost. The film is supported by the British Film Institute and the Wellcome Trust and is due for release in 2016.

Ellie’s website is at

0191 227 3110



Research Themes and Scholarly Interests

My research interests revolve around the genre of animated documentary. In particular I am interested in documenting difficult and complex subjects and representing them in a way that is accessible for all audiences. I am interested in and have worked in the past on subjects such as femininity, gender politics, education and identity.
My films are characterised by its blend of cutting-edge digital methods and traditional animation and film making techniques, setting her work apart as striking examples of the creative potential in using new technology to produce visceral, ‘organic’ work.

Documenting the EPA project is part of the knowledge transfer project set up by Professor Jackie Guille, in Africa. This film uses 3D animation and metaphorical storytelling devices to convey the complexities of the relationships built within the project and to map the knowledge transfer which happens within those relationships and the impact that has on the project objectives.

I have over 6 years experience working on collaborative project with Primary Educators looking at how creativity (through animation and film making) can inform and shape how the National Curriculum is delivered in Schools. The most recent project is with Sunningdale School in which I will be resident in the school for about 1 year. I will use observational documentary techniques and animated diagrammatic graphics to unveil and recognise the creative achievements of children with profound learning difficulties.

Professional Activity

Teaching Interests and Modules

I teach on the Undergraduate courses for the Communication Design group. I teach Animation theory and practice and software.

DE0999 Introduction to Animation
DE0964 Digital and Experimental media
DE0970 Introduction to Animation (IMD)
DE0996 Final Project Research and Development
DE0966 Collaboration and professional Association

Key Publications


Sleepless (2016) directed by Ellie Land, Produced by Animate Projects, funded by The Wellcome Trust


Breech (2015) directed by Ellie Land, Produced by Lynchpin, Funded by NIHR


Centrefold (2012) directed by Ellie Land, Produced by Lynchpin, Funded by The Wellcome Trust


Land, E and Patrick, R (2014) The Process of using participatory research methods with film making to disseminate research – challenges and potential  SAGE cases in Methodology, to be printed 2014/15


Land, E (2014) ‘Animating the other side: Animated documentary as a communication tool for exploring displacement and unification in Germany’ Displaced Heritage - Dealing with Disaster and Suffering Boydell and Brewer Ltd: London 


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