Week 1: Choosing a Project Focus

It was my first day on campus and it was good to be back at my old animation alma mater again - this time as a design master’s student.

This week was mainly an overview of what Research Design Methods entailed and how it integrates into our work in our master’s project and helping us come up with our focus for our projects.

When I started this Trimester, I had in mind to research the psychosocial effects of having a birthmark perhaps with a focus on how to help prepare parents to raise a child effected by one. I'd like to explore this through the medium of illustration.

As someone with an extensive birthmark of my own it’s a subject I’m familiar with. Choosing this subject does raise some issues as I will have to apply for ethics if I want to interview anyone and it will be a practical nightmare if I want to study children. However, as I have personal experience with the issue I can use myself as a case study and I also have to option to interview adults with birthmarks about their experiences as a child. I can also potentially research similar physical differences that may affect those affected in a similar way.


It's difficult to find but some illustration work exists as childrens books on the topic, mostly around facial portwine stains, "I Am Unique" byt Jennifer Vassel and Penny Weber is particularly beautiful.

I am considering buying it myself.


In terms of illustration styles that are of particular interest to me I have two directions in mind. One aimed at adults and one aimed at children.


For the adults a more editorial style is more fitting. I'm also enjoying the potential for animation.


I like this work by Sibel Acikalin Akgun for it's texture, colour palete and sense of movement.

Again, I like the creative colour palete of this animation by Dmitrij , and the simple animation.



For kids something more like this by Dilek Altıntaş Birben



And this spread by Altés, Marta



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