Studio’s “Being by Yourself” is one of 20 animated shorts
produced by the Imaginary Friend Society, a project of the Pediatric Brain
Tumor Foundation and RPA.
GLENDALE, Calif.—Kids suffering from cancer get advice
on dealing with the loneliness that accompanies long hospital stays in a sweet
animated short created by Renegade Animation for the
Imaginary Friend Society. The star of the piece is a cuddly, blue yeti named
Yuri, and she’s certainly an expert in loneliness as she’s camped out in the
middle of a desert with no one around but her own make-believe friends. Yuri
suggests that when undergoing complex medical procedures or when family members
are away, kids can use their imaginations to conjure their own companions.
“When you have an imagination,” she says, “you’re never really alone.”
Being by Yourself is one of
20 animated shorts produced by the Imaginary Friend Society, a joint project of
the Pediatric
Brain Tumor Foundation and advertising agency RPA. Each short tackles a
different cancer-related subject in a warm and child-friendly manner. Their aim
is to help kids get through scary times by providing them with useful
information and guidance in a way that they can relate to.
RPA’s creative team came up with the idea of using a yeti in a
desert as a symbol for loneliness, and Renegade’s animation team brings the
concept to life with thoughtfulness, gentle humor and charm. “We wanted to
capture how it feels for a child to be in a place where there’s no one else
around,” explains Renegade Animation Director Darrell Van Citters. “And we
wanted to show how you can magically fill the space with friends and zoom
through it in your mind.”

The colorfulness and whimsical style of the animation makes the
serious underlying message palatable to young minds. “Yuri has the personality
of a kid and she has an optimistic outlook on life,” says Designer John Bajet.
“She may be experiencing a dark time—she’s a winter creature who has been
plopped into a foreign place—but she knows how to make something out of
Being by Yourself, along
with other films in the series, can be viewed on the Imaginary Friend Society website. Renegade
Animation Executive Producer Ashley Postlewaite notes that the film won’t shorten
hospital stays or eliminate the sadness experienced by sick kids, but it could
help them cope with their feelings. “It’s wonderful to contribute to a project
that may help families and kids get through the toughest time in their lives,”
she says. “We’re proud of the enthusiasm and passion our people brought to this
project and thrilled to be a part of the campaign.”
Renegade Animation is located at 111 E. Broadway, Ste. 208,
Glendale, California 91205. Call 818.551.2351 or visit
Title: Being by Yourself
Project: Imaginary Friend Society
Client: Pediatric
Brain Tumor Foundation
Agency: RPA
Animation: Renegade
Animation. Darrell
Van Citters, Director; Ashley Postlewaite, Producer; Brittney Jorgensen,
Production Manager; Todd Cronin, Storyboard; John Bajet, Designer; Austin Doyle
and Randy Sanchez, Riggers; Zach Mekelburg Roman and Ng Lok, Animators; Austin
Doyle and Zach Mekelburg, Effects Artists.
Music: We Are Walker
Lime Studios        
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