After I was given the instructions for the first project, to be quite honest, I was at a loss; I didn’t even know what some of the words meant! So that was exactly where I started: researching the definitions.
First off, I looked up for the meanings of each word on the dictionary. I won’t write down all the definitions here and bore you with things that are just a google away.
However, translating these words into lines requires more than just understanding the definitions of the words. So that led me to my second step; associating the words with various things, namely objects and situations (some from my own experience!). I mainly used these associations as a guide during my experimentations.
Anxious: wavering of the will, heart constantly beating and feeling like bursting out of one’s chest
Embarrassed: feeling like hiding behind something or inside a hole, wanting to run away from the face of earth
Bizarre: not from this world, “what is that even”
Exhausted: the feeling after walking around for hours without a break
Fragile: shattering of glass, one little push is all it takes to break it completely
Systematic: repeating patterns, machines, someone who strictly follows the law, instructions, or a set schedule
Lyrical: happy songs and tunes
Turbulent: stormy waves, the feeling when different intense emotions internally clashes with each other
Nonsensical: when someone talks and they go about it in a roundabout way that it makes no sense
Psychotic: mental disorders, murders and mystery stories
Ambiguous: when something could be seen as one thing or another, when someone does or says something incomplete and leaves the rest to our imagination
Distracted: daydreaming, having lots of thoughts and problems in one’s head that they are detached from the real world
Sensual: flowers, silk, laces
Sloven: a room that looks like it has just been hit by a tornado, children playing with dirt
Spontaneous: when someone does something without thinking beforehand, “let’s buy this, and this one; this one looks good too; hey, how about this one?”
Aggressive: feeling like attacking something or someone out of the blue, reacting violently, answering with fists instead of mouth
Awkward: when you are in a group of people and no one is talking, when your head comes up with different things you could say but your mouth just won’t work and is holding you back
Indecisive: when one is stuck between two or more choices, what ifs, “maybe this choice is for the best; but what if this happens, then perhaps we should do this instead”
In the middle of doing this project, I was reminded of one of my favorite Japanese comic artists. He drew a lot of surreal effects and backgrounds in the comic by himself, so I found myself looking back to his works (not to read comics and procrastinate!) to find bits of inspirations.
Following that, I tried to find more inspirations from other things, such as various abstract art, deviantART, and games.
My very first experimentation process was basically just to let my hand loose, to pour out whatever was on my mind without much prior thinking. And this is what that resulted to: little snippets of trial runs.
And afterwards, I moved on to my black journal book…
These were made after I had finished my first draft (scroll down) as further experimentations.
I was quite proud of how some of them turned out (and I decided to use some in my final work), while others not quite. Consultation with Shirley helped out a lot as well. So I went back to more scribbles and trials on my black journal book.
My second draft was meant to be my second take on interpreting these words into lines.
(Close-ups and a few explanations will be shown in the next post)
When I first heard about what we were supposed to do for this project, I instantly thought “This is going to be a loooong, gruelling assignment…”
I suppose I was right in some ways; but in the end of it all, I actually had a lot of fun with this project! It was a different take from when I would usually draw out these feelings as facial expressions, or translating them into words when writing a story.
If there was one thing I could have improved on, that would be much, much more exploration – both with the mediums and experimentations. I wouldn’t say that I regretted the fact that I didn’t explore enough, but I will take this as a personal lesson and remember to not be afraid of exploring in the next pieces of works to come.