Sunday, 19 April 2015

Introducing Orang-utans

To progress on the development of my project, I have decided to focus on threats to orang-utans in the wild. The threats include habitat loss through deforestation, the illegal pet trade and agriculture for palm oil. These facts were all sourced from the World Wildlife Fund website.

The choice to focus on orang-utans came from when I initially looked into endangered species of the Sumatran forest. Then when I went to Chester Zoo to take primary source imagery I felt I sympathised with the animals, especially one who was by the glass and looked to somber and sad.

Although the animal was hard to photograph due to the reflection from the windows, I cannot explain how emotional this made me feel, how sad it was to see such a grand animal being observed in a cage which resembled not even a small portion of his original habitat. This made me want to make a change even more through my illustrations so that perhaps people will become aware that these animals were put on the Earth to achieve more than be viewed as an object in a zoo. If people are ignorant to the threats of orang-utans in the wild then they will be destined for a life in containers until they eventually fade from this planet entirely.

Here is a couple of experimental illustrations defining the character of this beautiful creature:

Saturday, 21 March 2015

WWF Donation Box

As part of the final exhibition, I wanted to include a World Wildlife Find donation box alongside my displayed work to encourage people to donate to the charity. Choosing the WWF to fund raise for was an easy decision as I have based much of my research on their website. My aim is to hopefully encourage people to want to make a change through my artwork and therefore donate as little as possible. 

After contacting the WWF through Twitter I emailed the contact given and was pleased to received a positive response and it seems that it will be possible to get a couple of donation boxes.

I gave them my address and received the boxes soon after I contacted the charity. Here is one of the boxes pieced together, I received two others which I can display with my exhibition.

Friday, 6 March 2015

Inspired by Campaign

Researching animal rights has made me realise how huge the problem is not only in the UK but also worldwide. Since the completion of my dissertation about animal rights, I have taken it upon myself to stop eating meat for as long as I can in aid of my project. As an avid meat eater it will be interesting to see how long I will be able to cope before I run out of meals... The point is, through research it has changed my own viewpoint of the way in which animals are treated my humans and therefore I hope to transfer this desire for change through my illustrations. A small step in the right direction is better than being ignorant to any of the issues at all.

Since my new project is about animal rights in regards to global issues, specifically endangered species, I found an inspiring way of campaigning by the WWF.

 WWF Origami Campaign
WWF Origami Campaign

The idea here by the WWF is to generate an interactive campaign method to raise awareness about the issues with a main aim for a donation from the viewer. This simple yet innovative campaign idea not only involves the viewer but allows them to make a direct connection with the animals who are endangered. Varying levels of difficulty mean that the origami is aimed at a range of younger and older viewers. The effort put in to making the origami proves to the viewer how little time it takes to make an impact through giving just a small amount of their time. Involving the viewer is an effective tactic for keeping the viewer interested and making the app available on a variety of technology devices aids the campaign to be accessible to a large amount of potential viewers who may donate to making a change.

Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Ideas for an end product

As an illustrator it is important to find a compatible context which is suitable for the topic. In this case I needed to figure out the context for the topic of 'endangered species' which would help me communicate in the best form possible. I have decided to step away from animation which I was leaning towards in my last project. This is due to the fact I would need to learn a whole new set of skills within a couple of months, and as I want my best work included in my final major project of university I felt that it was important to develop on skills I already have rather than learn new ones.

Therefore, I would still like to incorporate campaign in my work and making them more effective by enhancing my traditional and digital skills. The final product I would like to create is a campaign brochure as I feel it would allow me to explore the issues and causes of endangered species in the most effective way and hopefully begin to make a change. This will require research into brochure design and the content included, which I will do along side creating concepts through illustration.

Monday, 9 February 2015

FMP Development

Having decided on looking into endangered species for my final major project for University I feel that I have made a positive progression.

The main focus at the moment is on tigers in the wild and how the species is threatened due to a number of issues such as habitat loss and poaching caused by deforestation and the illegal wildlife trade. Therefore I have begun to create several ideas depicting how deforestation is threatening tiger species.

Here are my illustrations including process:

Idea 1: 

Watercolour and ink illustration portraying both sides of the story; a healthy tiger next to the destruction of deforestation which will be it's fate if nothing is done to prevent it.

Idea 1

Having completed the illustration, I feel that it is somehow quite disjointed and the two halves do not compliment each other. Perhaps if the tones refelcted each other more and the cut down trees formed the stripes of the tiger so that the image would connect as a whole. Even so, the fact the illustration is very literal means it is self explanatory which is important for conveying a message to the audience with instant impact.

Idea 2:

Watercolour and ink illustration of a close up tiger's eye filled with a scene of deforestation.

Idea 2

This illustration is intended for the audience to see how deforestation has a threatening impact from a tiger's point of view to create empathy. The scene is literally a reflection of what is seen by the tiger as excavators destroy its home. 

Inspiration for these illustrations came from a video posted by the WWF:

This video demonstrates how tigers could be here one day and gone the next. Without anyone stopping deforestation, habitat loss will eventually lead to tiger species becoming extinct. Through illustration, I aim to raise awareness about the issue and portray the truth behind the issue. 

Future development: 

So far I feel my illustrations are heading in the right direction although there is still much room for improvement and many more ideas. These illustrations could then be applied to a campaign brochure informing an 18-30 audience. The age category I have chosen is due to the fact that adults have the power to change, they can donate money or even be inspired to help conservation. I aim for my illustrations to not only raise awareness but inspire people who also want to and can make a change. 

Sunday, 1 February 2015

Endangered Species: Sumatran Tiger

After brainstorming for my final major project, I decided to focus on the theme of endangered species. As an extension of my animal right theme, this will allow me to explore a wider variety of endangered species globally, researching the issues and causes behind each animal I choose.

To begin with, I chose to focus on the Sumatran Tiger as it is noted as critically endangered by the World Wildlife Fund. With a bit of research I found out that deforestation is one of the main causes for the habitat loss of these beautiful creatures. Therefore, I wanted to create a quick experiment using media, materials and techniques to portray this sense of deforestation.

In these photos you can see the process of making the piece. Initially, I tore the top layer of cardboard to reveal the corrugated texture. The aim here was to recreate a similar effect to deforestation by destroying the background just as forests are destroyed in Indonesia, the Sumatran tigers home. Once I had completed this effect enough, I chose to use mixed media of oil pastel and charcoal which enabled me to create bold line and strong, vivid color.

Overall, I think this technique has worked effectively although the drawing of the tiger could be in better proportion. However, the way the cardboard was torn reflects the deforestation well and similar methods could be used to reflect other issues and species.