In the Beginning

This project began from two concepts: one having a traditional narrative structure that would explore the nostalgic theme of a homecoming, such as a depiction of the Odyssey, and another less story-driven motion piece that would abstractly illustrate an artistic movement.

  • The story suddenly came to me one day as I was washing my hands. A strange feeling overcame me as I could picture myself repeating this same task in another lifetime. This epiphany formed the basis of the film by connecting that sense of déjà vu with the past.

In to the Deep

Once the topic was decided, I began to research what could possibly answer the question of why one may prefer the past over the present. Sigmund Freud offered his thoughts on this paradox, and his teachings brought more questions to light regarding identity and even trauma.

  • The way in which individuals connect with these reflections of their identities can be understood in correlation to psychoanalysis, which is the philosophy of personality and the development of the mind. Paralleled with psychoanalytic theory, this alleged past can be argued to be non-existent entirely. Sigmund Freud offers that it is a repressive response to childhood trauma. These screen memories overshadow one’s true recollections, which are now lost in the unconscious mind.

    In consideration of Jacques Lacan’s studies, these memories may be constructed in pursuit of the ideal image one forms early in life during the mirror stage, a theory in which a representation of oneself is established by other external images of the body. The formation of identity is dependent on this glorified image, and people spend their lives yearning to fulfill this early impression of self.

A Glimpse of Her Mind

Genevieve yearns for a life more than the everyday and mundane aspects—more than what her life has become, and, for this, she becomes nostalgic for the past. Her escapism through dreams represents the person she once believed she would be or had the potential to become at the least. It reflects herself and the ideal image she has spent her life trying to attain; however, she will never become this impression of self.

  • As Genevieve solemnly sits in her unruly room, representative of her internal struggle, she reflects on her life and who she has become. She suddenly begins to see herself living a glamorous life as a starlet, but these are not genuine recollections. Her romanticization of the past begins to take over her current reality and even her authentic memories.

2D Character Rig

A two-dimensional character rig for Genevieve was created in order to speed up color and clean up later on in the animation process. As most of the shots of her are from the waist up, more focus was dedicated to the face rigging for the eyes as well as a smooth turn for her head.

The Influence of Art Nouveau

The main idea behind the two-dimensional sequences is that they are not real. They are meant to serve as fantastical moments that the main character is experiencing, and the audience is watching this happen to her visually. For this, I wanted something highly graphic that had a dream-like quality to it.