Sunday, April 18, 2010

My Final Studio Thesis

This is my final studio art thesis- "The Boy Who Could Not Not Worry", run time: 6 minutes and 30 seconds. Below is my studio statement. Hope you enjoy!

This project is very close to my heart. I have always been passionate about storytelling and was excited to be forced by the demands of thesis to sit down and get one out of my system. Granted, I am writing this half way through the second semester and it is possible this film will not be done by the time you are reading this. But, the show will go on.

I always knew I wanted to pursue a career in the arts and in animation in particular. When I was younger I would staple pieces of paper together, and would draw and write on them for hours at a time in my room, narrating adventure stories. For better or worse, my parents would listen to all of them giving me the support and encouragement I needed (despite many of the stories being about Mr. Fox, a professional chef, or professional murderer).

Even at this young age my tales would veer towards the grim and ghastly. Throughout the course of my life I have been inspired by the works of Tim Burton and Edward Gorey. As a double major in psychology and studio art, I have become obsessed with exploring these two worlds in both research and observation in my sketchbooks.

While the film you are about to see was intended for children, the inspiration for it is a strong current social issue occurring just within this past decade. In my animation I begin to question the way that pharmaceutical companies are choosing to broaden their clientele. Within the past decade the criteria for having any given psychological abnormality has broadened and more mental illnesses have been “identified”, especially for young children. Not surprisingly, there has been a corresponding rise in mental illness diagnoses, and in the prescribing of medications to treat it.

My film is presented as an animatic, or very choppy animation, a technique I learned last spring at Parsons the New School of Design in NYC. Everything is hand-drawn in charcoal, ink and ink wash. The program Photoshop was used to layer images on top of each other and FinalCutPro was use to merge these images into a sequence with music, voiceovers and sound effects.

My ultimate goal for this short film is to gently remind the viewer that they are in control of their own minds. All psychological illnesses are on a spectrum- we all have a little bit of craziness within us- the test is truly how we learn to cope with it.

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