I began to doodle as much as I can I find it is really helping me. Taking a step back from the in depth research on my project to do some quick sketches is quite enjoyable. I have been doodling things to just do with my topic so under the sea related objects like octopus’s, mermaids and some influence from the little mermaid itself. I will continue to doodle through out the project in order to discover my own style.
I think it is very important to invent my own art style. I am still so unsure the approach I want to take when designing my characters, I have tried to start doodling when ever I can, just to loosen up and get my creative juices flowing. I have been looking up some images to seek inspiration. I am still nowhere near what direction I want to go but Im getting there. I feel the information I uncovered when researching my target audience will heavily influence the type of style I go for.
In my previous post I discussed some of my findings when researching about my target audience, ages 5 – 10. It really got me thinking about how can I use this knowledge to the best of my abilities. How can I integrate my research into creating a better project. I feel for any successful children’s product, it should teach the child something. If my graphic novel thought the child a lesson it would be taking very well as this is the perfect age group for learning new things.
Im still working on some ideas. From the start I suggested Maybe Ursula secretly supports Ariel. This would promote females supporting females instead of the usual evil witch trying to cause the beautiful princesses demise like we see time and time again a lot of fairytales are female vs female heavy so I could take a unique approach to something like that.
I found out quite a bit of information, Ages 5-10 is commonly known as middle childhood. This is a time of major cognitive development. A Childs vocabulary significantly increases between these ages. They enhance their imagination and creativity and self care skills. Also at this age children learn to play fairly, follow rules, improve ability to cooperate and think morally.
This is also an important age for self esteem development which I think will come in to play with the way I portray my characters as there is quite a bit of speculation around how Ariel is drawn in Disney’s The Little Mermaid. Some say she is drawn in a sexual way aiming her towards an older male audience.
So I began researching online, just basic google searches and looking up some articles to try and acquire as much information as possible. There is so many different theories on different age groups. I want to concentrate more on what children are into, what abilities they have at certain ages and their literacy level etc.. I feel by educating myself more on my target audience this will with out a doubt help me provide a better product in the end.
The age range I chose as my target audience was ages 5 – 10. I chose this range as it seemed the most popular age of children who where into disney movies and cartoons. As I have nieces and nephews in and around this age from chatting to them it seemed it would be a good age to create for.
After much thinking I realise I need more in depth research about my age rang, what are they into? what are their abilities? in order to create a more successful product. I plan to look into these things and see how I can integrate my findings into my design and over all project.
So I began to do some scene by scenes just again to help myself and allow me to vision my story. I like just writing everything on paper. Jotting down ideas and scribbling stuff out. It really allows me to play around with ideas. Once I have more scenes written out in depth I want to begin to do some quick storyboards, just on paper, I really want to get the ball rolling and start playing around with ideas more. Once I do that I feel I can finally decide on the style of drawing I want to do and start to look at character designs.
I decided to sit down and write the story down from start to finish. This may not be the final draft but it is a good start. I already knew the route I was going down with the story, but I needed to actually properly write it all out and fill in some blanks. The first draft is a bout a page I am going to write it out again going into more detail just for myself. I do plan to write out scene by scene as well.
I decided to put the art style and design to the side for a bit. In order to start thinking about the look and feel of my project I need the story to be complete, all the blanks filled in and for me to be totally happy with it before moving forward. I started with the overview of my story. Yes, it is based on the classic tale that is The Little Mermaid, it is a story about a misunderstood woman. A villainous witch we where against in Disney’s depiction of the tale. I aim to show the audience why Ursula is the way she is, in the hope they can sympathise with her aswell as take a liking to the sea witch in my version of the story!
The way in which Disney illustrated The Little Mermaid is quite beautiful. The animations are seamless, overall the whole piece is brilliant which is the reason it is a classic and a favourite of many. Most people would recognise Disney’s The little mermaid immediately. The red headed beauty is an icon.
I want to create a unique portrayal of the story. However I do want the characters to be somewhat recognisable to fans. I plan to make my characters unique with some essence of the disney drawings put in to tie everything together nicely.
This may be where I face challenges. How do I portray that these characters are your childhood favourites without ripping off others ideas. This makes me think about completely reworking the characters and making them unique to me and my ideas.
I feel the fact I am telling the story from a different angle and in a different time that the story automatically becomes unique. So therefore keeping some of what you see in the classic Disney movie may be ok.
The look of characters and style will be a big factor in my story soon, Once I perfect the story from start to finish, Which is what I am concentrating on now. I just couldn’t help but think about the look and style of the characters.