After coming back from the Computer Art Club trip to Ottawa, those who attended met within a small group and received feedback from one another. A few comments stuck out to me regarding how I can improve my project conceptually. Upon discussion I realized the initial resolution I had planned for my piece would likely be overly convoluted and thus hard for viewers to get invested in. As I further develop the ending(s) for the dialogue trees for each character I will try to keep things simple for the player and visually clear for those watching. Additionally the resolution for the player character should match that of what resolution for a journalist would be, as that is the profession they are acting out throughout the piece. Another comment that made me reevaluate my project was that I had a lack of female characters in my sketches. While I did have one, that was a minority to the 5 characters I had that were either intended to be male or gender neutral. With the theme of my project being heavily reliant on a diverse cast of opinions from relatable personalities, it is crucial that the many different people are represented within the experience. The problem with this idea is that due to time restraints I may only have time to finish 2 to 3 characters. While I would like to have 4 to 5, that still isn’t a high enough number to represent every demographic that I would like. This discussion made it clear to me I need to be careful about which demographics I pick so that my larger message is being communicated through characters that are relatable to multiple demographics of people. These are the two big take-aways I had for this discussion. I found it beneficial in thinking through some of the details of my project as a whole.
My trip to the Ottawa International Animation Festival was beneficial to my planning process for certain aspects of my BFA project. One panel in particular, which focused on the production of the Wes Anderson film: Isle of Dogs, helped me in developing my world building process. Isle of Dogs shares a similar tone within its visual and spoken language that I wish to achieve with my piece. For starters, the time period of the piece is a hypothetical future with post-apocalyptic imagery and themes. Despite the dark tones that come from such a setting, the timing and dialogue of the film inspire a sense of humor (A very dry sense of humor, but a sense of humor none the less). This is something I hope to achieve with my piece. I fear if I make the tone too dark the characters will become unrelatable. While I want the characters to have rough situations that are indicated by their visual design and dialogue, I want these situations to have lots of personality that is unique to their character that may include some dry wit that perhaps comments on the metaphor they represent in a somewhat meta way. In Isle of Dogs, Wes Anderson establishes a future that progressed from the 60s, from the perspective of what people in the 60s thought the future would be like. This is something I am considering for my project as well. I want the technology of the world have parallels to how things are today, however to also have a more analog feel. Much of the inspiration I am arriving at comes from steampunk which combines technological imagery in old fashioned looking ways. The people in the world of my project don’t consider themselves to be in a post-apocalypse, so while they wear gas masks to filter out toxins this is just considered the norm for them. The Isle of Dogs panel gave me a lot to consider regarding the world building of my project.