Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Forming An Idea

The Creative Process

Written by Nicole Wilk

Selecting the Book

For the book trailer we were informed that any book - dictionary, cookbook, storybook, novel, magazine, etc - could be used as a subject matter for our book trailer project as long the material is meaningful to us. Selecting the content for a project makes the choice difficult when options are too wide open, but 'meaningful to you' narrowed the criteria significantly. In order to meet this goal I selected a story from my childhood, a fairy tale I read again and again. The story was illustrated in what I believe was pencil crayon, with decorative boarders and a divide between story and text. The version I was familiar with was "Tatterhood" by Robin Muller.  

Themes Present in the Story

Having accepted group members Ying Shan and Roshanth Nadesapillai I sent my comrades a summary of story elements:
  • magic and royalty
  • blooming flowers of night and day
  • 2 sisters of opposite natures
  • a girl always shrouded in a tattered hood with mangled hair sticking from her hood (she has a goat to ride and a large wooden spoon instead of a horse and sword)
  • a fair princess with a cows head
  • witches/goblins/trolls (a fight scene)
  • endless oceans, sailing ship
  • finding love
  • transformation scene from ugly to beauty
  • the line "As you see me, so I am."

Animation Inspiration

My group members accepted the themes and ideas from the story and shared my opinion that there was a lot that could be done to animate this work. With that in mind I found video's that could inspire the animation technique we would be using in our video: 


In this Dracula and Frankenstein animation, stop motion was utilized with paper. Paper characters, sets, and a dark mood created with a play on black and white (mimicking old film based horror movies). Here I thought creating the world of the animation through paper would reflect the physical texture of the book.

This Legend of the Sword animation relied on mono-toned colouring with heavy ink work. What was most impressive about this was the motion, particularly with the flapping of flags, hair, and clothes. 

The Twilight Sensation animation used a mixture of real-life silhouettes with paper silhouettes, as well as a stunning use of colour in the environments. The video showed how to take a physical object (sheets) and create an abstract plane, such as the world created within the white pallet.

Red was a stunning display of monochromatic colouring. The background and characters reflected the hues of red, going so far to play on the cape of "little red riding hood" and the bestiality nature of the wolf when he has blood dripping frighteningly from his mouth. I found this video, though unfinished, stunning and believe that my opinion is highly reflective of the colour choices within the video.

The Tale of the Three Brothers used stunning narrative and monochromatic colouring, as well as computer generative use of transparency to tell an enthralling story. The narrative was powerful in this piece, the voice quiet, steady, and firm which demanded the listeners attention. The mood was set by the colour tones of the scenes. The backgrounds were simple, misty, and often confined with shadows in what should have been open spaces, and therefore containing the story art into a movie book (the nondescript background the page). This story is a rendition of a children's story, within the Harry Potter series.

Incorporating the reference material

Written by Nicole Wilk after the animation process
Of the videos that I evaluated for inspiration I decided that: like Dracula and Frankenstein I would use paper as the medium to tell the story, as I appreciate the medium that I am representing (in the case of this assignment, a story) within the confines of the animation. I believe the direct representation of paper in the video will emphasize the book nature of the story I am representing. Legend of the Sword, however, was used as a direct study of motion. I will be using still images from paper and wish to convey motion in the movement of certain characteristics such as hair, for that the Heavenly sword was a great resource. Twilight Sensation relied on overlaying aspects of the animation, from this I figured out how I wished to colour my animation: by creating layers of colour that overlap and blend into each other. Red's beautiful use of monochromatic colouring touched a desire within myself to incorporate something similar. I used a duel-colour system of browns and blues. Finally, from the Tale of the Three Brothers animation, I incorporated the vagueness of backgrounds to mimic the imagery of stories as incorporated by the listener/reader. As the person experiencing a story only receive so much information about what is happening immediately, the background can be undefined, vague, or not as important as the immediate going-ons of the characters. By shadowing the characters and creating the indescribable background as flat, I believe that not only am I incorporating the minds reality of the story, but the physical plane of a book as well. 

Referance Imagery

Research on the origins of the Tatterhood story revealed roots of a Nordic nature. With that in mind, I searched for images to base an the animation art from. This involved flowers that represented the sisters, twisting knots, ships and creature art. 

Unfortunately none of these images were used in the final design of the Tatterhood project.

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