If you’ve seen the viral cartoon, Who Is Go To The Movies? on social media, then you can thank Bahamian animator Chernecia Campbell for creating it.
Campbell, through her company, Amatreneur – a portmanteau of amateur entrepreneur – created the cartoon, which has racked up thousands of views on social media, and been shared countless times on WhatsApp.
The audio from Who Is Go To The Movies? stems from a voice note that was widely circulated on WhatsApp years ago.
In the cartoon, an unidentified Bahamian man vents his frustration with individuals who go to the theatre without taking a jacket.
During his conversation with a female companion, he grows increasingly incensed that women have an expectation that men would share their jackets in a chilly theatre. The entire clip is hilarious . . . and very Bahamian. Disclaimer: it’s not safe for work.
Campbell, 28, took that audio and transformed it into an hysterical piece.
In an interview with This Bahamian Gyal, the full-time animator says she decided to put her work in the public domain because she felt it could change her life and the lives of others.
Beyond that, she says she had “nothing to lose.”
“The response to my work has always been ‘good’ or acknowledged on a small scale by people close to me, but It wasn’t until recently that I experienced going viral with my Who Is Go To The Movies? cartoon,” she said.
“Ironically, that cartoon was probably one that I put the least amount of effort into. It was just something to post. I now see something that I created under threads of posts, [where people rave] about how hilarious it was.”
A Regular Job Just Didn’t Cut It
Like many artists, Campbell’s foray into animation began as a hobby.
She graduated magna cum laude with a BA in Music Production and worked a number of odd jobs in the customer service industry where she says she experienced great success. But, the work environment proved to be detrimental to her happiness.
“A combination of work stress and personal life factors led me down a path of self-discovery – one which did not include having an official job,” she said.
It wasn’t until 2019 that she went full throttle with an animation career.
The self-taught animator, who is also a classically trained pianist and producer/songwriter, believes she was born an artist.
“I never just played with toys, I created storylines and moved them around in a lifelike manner. My ability to create my own stories and bring them to life stuck with me,” says Campbell.
She says she eventually invested in software and spent every day figuring out how to operate it.
The Inspiration Behind Her Career
A 90s cartoon that aired on Nickelodeon and featured precocious babies was a huge inspiration for Campbell.
“Rugrats was it for me. I loved Rugrats more than anything. I was completely amazed that a show like that existed,” she said.
“I lived, breathed and dreamt of Rugrats. Not only did I love the art of the cartoon itself, but in watching the show I developed a passion for voice acting. Cree Summer and Christine Cavanaugh are two voices actresses that I admire.”
Summer and Cavanaugh influenced Campbell so much that she says she would like to create and voice her own animated series one day.
“I am passionate about kids shows and creating them for another generation of children, hopefully sparking the same joy that Rugrats did for me. I am also a passionate writer and plan to continue creating stories that all ages would enjoy,” she said.
“I plan to be brave enough one day to pursue acting in sitcoms or sci-fi. I see myself moving with the flow of my own creativity, allowing it to take me wherever it wants.
Animation Is Work
One of the things Campbell says people may be surprised to learn, is the length of time it takes to create even the shortest animations.
That’s due to the many components that go into developing a project, like creating a script, recording audio, and designing the characters and
“Animation is one of the most time consuming forms of art I’ve ever done. A lot of people look at a short clip of a few minutes and are completely unaware at the extent the animator went through to make it possible,” she says.
“A second of an animation for me could take an hour or more, depending on the detail I hope to accomplish within a frame.”
Campbell says as an artist, when you are completely “passion driven” you become emotionally attached to everything you create.
“You essentially dedicate a product of your blood, sweat and tears and release it into the world for others to scrutinize, ignore or love. It can either bring you an immeasurable amount of fulfillment, or sadness. At the end of the day, though, no one can genuinely appreciate your content as much as you do,” she says.
“Remembering to do what makes you happy regardless of whether it gets noticed, is what’s most important.”
You can find Campbell on Instagram, TikTok and YouTube under the handle, @TheAmatreneur. You can also reach out on email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
This Bahamian Gyal