A phantom boyfriend features in Jimmy Simpson’s touching Modern Love animation

Date
6 January 2016
Reading Time
1 minute read

We’ve featured numerous animations from The New York Times’ Modern Love series in the past. In heartaching detail, they retell simple tales of romance and sorrow and Jimmy Simpson’s offering is up their with our favourites with his sensitive portrayal of Deenie Hartzog-Mislock’s story.

The animation recounts the tale of Deenie’s grandmother and the boyfriend she unknowingly invented for one of her daughters (Deenie’s aunt). At the time, her grandmother was suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, so while they knew it was fiction they played along for two and a half years until the phantom boyfriend’s “death”. The New York-based illustrator and animator thoughtfully brings Deenie’s words to life and elegantly glides from one scene to the next in a sea of calming blues and silky peaches.

One look through Jimmy’s portfolio and it’s clear he’s able to adapt his style to suit any project having previously worked with Google and Refinery29, but his Modern Love animation demonstrates his narrative skill. A mix of close-up crops and wider shots, the individual frames are beautifully composed and sequenced. The soft features and smooth textures of Jimmy’s animated world adds a friendliness, which keeps us engaged.

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Jimmy Simpson: New York Times, Modern Love

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Jimmy Simpson: New York Times, Modern Love

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Jimmy Simpson: New York Times, Modern Love

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Jimmy Simpson: New York Times, Modern Love

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Jimmy Simpson: New York Times, Modern Love

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About the Author

Rebecca Fulleylove

Rebecca became staff writer at It’s Nice That in March 2016 before leaving the company at the end of 2017. Before joining the company full time she worked with us on a freelance basis many times, as well as stints at Macmillan Publishers, D&AD, Dazed and frieze.

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