Wednesday, May 5, 2010

On Storytelling

I have been drawing since I was a wee child. I have been working on my visual language for all of my (short) life. Finding the right imagery and stylistic choices for the art and animation of Fathoms is not an easy choice, but, it is a choice I am much more comfortable with than the story. But, the story is the critical thing, it's the backbone, and the heart and soul of Fathoms.

It's the reason I stopped production half-way through completion of the original Fathoms, and it's the reason I am still revising my script. It may take me 5 or 6 years to complete this, but this is my baby, and I will finish it, but I also want to be happy with it. I'm not going to pump something out just to say I finished it. That works when I'm making things for paying clients, but not when it's for me. If I'm the client, and I'm not satisfied, what's the point?

The art style (for me), is just the skin, the hair, the nails. Sure, we will all judge these things first, because they take the least work to address, but, these things do not make a success (unless I'm making a demo reel).


I admit, I am not a good storyteller, not in the midst of conversation anyway.
I find that I stumble in live performance situations, including telling stories.

But, I am good at planning. If I have time to sit with my thoughts, and write something out, and let it sit, and stir, for a week or two, then I have a chance at addressing my lack of innate storytelling abilities.

I believe I have stories in me, unique, universal stories...maybe even interesting stories. And no, these stories don't include the main character finding out that they had a split personality and they were really the villain (as well as the hero) the whole time.

I have lived a little, through good and through bad. I don't always know how to connect with others, but, I think that adds to my unique perspective as a story teller/writer/auteur/director/artist/whatever.

Basically, I'm saying this: I'm very comfortable with my visual vocabulary, but I'm very uncomfortable (and unpracticed) with storytelling (and writing).

The focus of Fathoms is, at its core, a story about people and their internal struggles. So, I am still focusing on refining my story until I am absolutely satisfied that it has an air of emotional authenticity...before I start doing the 'easy' part, the visuals...again.

Also, when this is all over, I will be making an art book that includes all the original art work and storyboards for the version that sits dead on my work table. And, hopefully I will be making tiny real life models of the Scavenger Arken to give away to a few kind souls.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

"O snail
Climb Mount Fuji
But slowly, slowly"