It is an excruciating tedious process for me to fully illustrate Assignment 2 (see: Don’t Make My Dream Come True!), and once again I challenge my limits by taking on the full role of visualizer for the group’s Final Project.
There are several reasons why I decided to take on the role of the visualizer. Mainly, in order to narrate a story through such visual communication successfully, the need for a cohesive art direction is duly needed. If everyone on the team decides to draw fragmented pieces of narratives with different stylings, it will look very jarring and the whole story will not flow as smoothly as fluidity is key.
Secondly, skill sets are important in delivering such illustrations. Being the most experienced person in the team in working with Illustrator, naturally the role of the visualizer falls upon me. The team has no qualms about it.
Though the team has communicated briefly before that I can do up the drawing and they will do the inking, the approach that I had undertaken works differently from how the team envisioned. It’s not about drawing and inking as separate process but rather a whole conflated process in which I think only one person can perform to deliver the graphics, unless the other person works almost exactly like me, which in this case I really wished for one to lighten the load.
I had seen teams with all members illustrating and if i may add, it proved my first point; narratives end up in fragmented pieces rather than an assimilated piece. I have put in a lot of hours, not forgetting the heart and soul in illustrating these 70 odd panels. Looking back at it, I must say I am proud of myself in achieving such feat.
To recap, the final project is a team collaborative effort in which to deliver a sequential piece which is interactive and engages the audiences through several approaches. In our team, we decided to alter the particular ending of Sleeping Beauty, how we envisioned it to end.
I begin with Draft 1 where I loosely draw some figures and some composition to play with space relations and also set a certain framework for my vector illustration to follow through.
I took on an illustrative style that is closely related to child-like renderings, use of vector based graphics to bring out the whole narrative. I did not draw on paper and then transfer as my working style is draw and develop at the same time. So here are some stills!
The use of color to suggest the mood should also be noted, the transition from the evil aftermath of evil queen defeated leaving Sleeping Beauty in the castle, to the cheerful and buzzing sights of the cosmetic beauty world.
Serif and san-serif fonts are used in this sequential art piece, they are used to convey either a classical, timeless mood needed for the narrative, or modern look to convey a clean and fresh mood, that is suitable especially for the info graphics component to depict the process of the surgery, as it has a cleaner ‘technical’ tone to it.
Didot, a serif font was used for the main text, and DIN, a san serif font was used for the info graphics or screen based font that are needed in scenes such as displays in the airport, etc.
Character are the key roles in the whole story, thus it is important that they are done up right. In this story, at first I wanted my prince to take on a more mature role thus i added in facial hair, but during critique it was brought up by many peers that the beard made him seem rather old, and that in certain frame it seems like the prince is extremely lecherous:
After taking in the feedback I removed the facial hair and the Prince seemed younger.
And here are some of the characters that I have came up with for the story:
LAYOUT AND VISUAL COMPOSITION
The problem I faced with the final project was that time was definitely not on my side. The work load was indeed mental. Trying to juggle between workload from other modules and drawing this project, it takes a balanced equation, but mine somehow fell short at times. Nitty gritty attention to details must be paid duly in order to bring out the essence of the illustration. Even though they are secondary, but these small details sometimes can take up hours to complete them, such as buildings, landscaping design, peripherals and apparatus, human crowd, to name a few.
And this is further exemplified by the Infographic components, small details are critical in conveying the narrative at large. Here are some examples:
Also there are technical aspects such as achieving results like light source emitting luminance, glass windows, reflection of mirror, etc in a vector based program is rather difficult, but I managed to overcome this through the use of filters.
All these are components of visual composition and layout, the understanding of color relations, spatial relations within a frame are to be duly noted.
Though this took up a lot of time, there are also other parts that we as a team have to worry about, how do we script the html to display the panels and so on. How do we add on interactivity, how do we engage users. To capture audiences’ attention by aesthetics is primary, but to further engage them through modes of interaction is something that is of prime importance in this module. For the scripting, the group has undergone tedious scripting and after 12 revisions, we came up with something that the team is proud of.
In all, it was an extremely rewarding experience as not only I tested and expanded my limits as a visualizer working under such tight deadlines, I uncovered new ways to solve problems which I never knew could have been solved, and only through such developmental learning in which I seek answers, probe deeper and inject new meanings and viewing experiences in the art that I create.
I hope you like it.