– E G O –
For my final 2D project, I am supposed to dig deep into the abyss of my soul and materialize certain aspects of my personality into visual, metaphorical characters/objects that reflect how I am like in different situations. It could be how I portray myself to others (outward portrayal), or how I think I am like towards others (inward portrayal). By combining the character/object chosen and different social situations, I can combine the two to imagine an outcome.
AH HAAA but there’s a catch, because in this project, COLOUR is IMPORTANT. In this project, we are only allowed to use the following colour palette (Just for easier illustration purposes, I shall use red to demonstrate the differences!)
(same colour but different saturation level)
2) Analogous (including colours on the side of the original colour in the colour wheel)
Analogous color schemes often mimic the color schemes found in our natural environment and can create a calm and relaxed feel when applied in design.
3) Complementary (colours on the opposite end of the colour wheel)
Opposing colors on the color wheel are dramatically different and because of this they will create a high impact jolt when paired together. Complementary colors are frequently used to draw attention and emphasis to a particular space within a design and can be quite effective when used in small doses.
4) Split complementary (colours on the opposite, but includes adjacent colours)
Using a split complementary color scheme as opposed to a complementary color scheme is less risky as the result of the three colors together is less harsh and not as loud as a complementary color scheme.
5) Triadic (draw a triangle on the colour wheel get the colours)
The three colors used in this scheme tend to sit well together and can be quite lively and harmonious.
The reason for using colour palettes is that we are able to create colour harmony, which looks more aesthetically pleasing. Including different colours in the colour wheel can evoke different emotions that enhance the message of our chosen imagery.
Based on my findings, I came up with some visuals to depict my EGO in the format of
_(insert symbol of self)_ + _(situation)_ = _(outcome)_
Situation #1 (Draft 1):
-My struggle with the standard style of academics (especially in Junior College).
Trait: Free-spirited (trapped)
Thing: Cuckoo clock
-When asking around for what animal would represent me, my friends said a bird/butterfly. Some of my friends also said that I was free-spirited (You learn new things about yourself when you actually bother to ask other people what they think of you HAHA), so I thought something with wings would work since it represented flying away from your responsibilities to obtain freedom. I thought that a cuckoo bird was really apt since cuckoo birds are always trapped inside the clock and released at a fixed time every day. Sounds like SCHOOL?? 8’D So I’m a cuckoo bird that wants to be released but still restrained.
-I used a monochromatic brown palette for this picture since it represents dullness and the mundanity of school life. The bird, however is a light yellow-ish shade since I wanted to represent myself in my ideal element as a jovial, optimistic person.
Social situation: School
Setting: Car on the road
-To me, school is a pretty mechanical system that keeps pushing students higher up the educational ladder. I used a car to represent school since cars are automobiles that are supposed to help us, drivers are usually very focused on moving forward.
-I used a monochromatic red colour palette since red is a very energetic colour and implies action. it could also imply danger.
Free spirit + School = Tortured soul
Cuckoo bird + Car = Cuckoo bird getting dragged along the ground
-For me, the higher up the educational ladder I climbed (with the exception of university), the more I struggled to keep up and the more unhappy I felt. With every bad grade I got for my exams, it really made me feel like I was getting increasingly abraded. It was tough being myself again; looking back at my social media posts and reflecting on my attitude towards my family, it made me realise that I really wasn’t myself at all, as if I’d gone dysfunctional and completely lost myself under the unrelenting stress of school, and I felt like everyone around me was oblivious to how much help I needed. I’m representing this with a cuckoo bird tied to the car and getting dragged along the road to destruction. (not depressing at all)
For the colour palette, I simply combined the two monochromatic colour palettes together to form an analagous red-yellow colour palette.
Medium of execution: Digital painting
1st row (Draft 1)
Situation #1 (Draft 2):
I decided to make the outcome less negative so I decided to portray me being empowered in school instead of being crippled by it!
Here are some inspirations!
So here I have a new outcome! Instead of being dragged along by school until I’m broken (which, by the way, was quite true to a large extent in JC), I am now empowered by what I have learned and now I have the conviction to aim for higher results!! I guess this now represents the present. The past me was really depressed– ok I shall stop ranting here.
Situation #1 (Final Draft):
Yay! So now I have my final results done traditionally with watercolour markers (Shinhan Twin Touch, not Copics because I’m poor like that), and black marker pen for outlines (OUTLINES SAVE WATERCOLOUR WORKS!!!).
[Traditional; Shinhan Twintouch watercolour markers]
The cuckoo bird is still desperate to break free (made it have a complementary colour harmony which was fitting since blue also represents freedom), I added papers with really bad grades flying around the school car (not bus), and now I am a MECHA BIRD THAT WANTS TO BE MORE POSITIVE 😀
Situation #2 (Draft 1):
-Me dealing with anyone visiting my house.
– Normally, I don’t like to put myself out there and be the centre of attraction. Speaking with confidence to strangers for a short while is okay, but if it drags on for too long, my mental energy gets drained thinking about what topics to bring up because I’m awkward and overly-conscious like that. And when it does, I like to stay in solitude to gather my thoughts and brace myself for meeting the next fellow human. I thought a tortoise was perfect for this trait since tortoises can retreat into the safety of their hard, protective shells. It would be pretty boring just having a tortoise so I made myself into a windup tortoise instead after drawing some inspiration from Toy Story’s Woody which as a pull string, which represents having a limited time of extroversion before feeling really down and keeping to myself again.
-I coloured the tortoise green with a pink background to depict my amiable personality (or at least I hope I am).
Social situation: Home visits from strangers
Setting: Ominous figure walking into a dark room
-I utilised the complementary colours of blue/purple with yellow to show a contrast in lighting. Anyone who invades my humble abode appear like towering dark figures to me. They threaten my bubble of privacy and I will use all means to defend it. 😀
Introversion + Home visits from strangers = Isolating myself from everyone else
Tortoise + Ominous figure = Tortoise retreating into shell and cowering away
-Here I used sort of an analogous and complementary colour scheme. The pink from the turtle is completely gone because I’ve run out of fuel to socialise and seeking refuge in my shell while the anonymous tall figure towers over me and daunts me.
Situation #2 (Draft 2):
After receiving feedback from the first round of consultations, I got the idea of using rabbits to represent strangers (because according to the hare and tortoise folklore, they’re supposed to be enemies, also, rabbits are often representative of hyperactivity and face-paced action because of how much they can jump about).
Situation #2 (Final Draft):
I never thought I would actually do it, but I PICKED UP ILLUSTRATOR WHOOPDEEDOO!!! It seemed like such a daunting task. I remember how shocked I was at the amount of potential it had after watching a Youtube tutorial video. Everything you put in Illustrator looks so legitimate!! But I’m so glad I did because now I have one more tool to carry around 😀 (but it does take quite a long time since every single shape has to be manually inserted and the number of layers drives me nuts.)
So I made my tortoise (without the pullstring thing because it kind of seemed redundant), have rabbits peer through the door instead of an anonymous stranger, and have me (as a tortoise) project a carrot, instead of a bat, to draw the rabbits’ attention elsewhere so that I am free to relax in solitary.
Situation #3 (Draft 1):
-Me dealing with anyone visiting my house.
- The moon is often seen as a feminine, nurturing, all-seeing symbol. All of which I am usually not (because I am one big giant kid), unless I am surrounded by kids around me. (Monochrome harmony)
Social situation: Taking care of kids
-Crayons remind me of children because that one time I worked at a kindergarten, they literally did colouring with crayons for so much of their time there. Crayons are one of the first drawing tools that we are exposed to as children as well, so it usually suggests childhood. (Crayons are made of wax, so I thought maybe they would burn. What an odd idea 8’D)
Nurturing + Taking care of kids = Educating and enlightening them
Moon + Lit crayons = Crayons being lit up like candles
For some reason, there are lots of children in my life. My younger baby brother, and the kids that I met when I taught in the kindergarten. I only feel grown-up when I’m around them and feel like a responsible adult. The crayons being lit represents me enlightening them and showing the way.
Situation #3 (Draft 1):
Situation #3 (Draft 2):
Situation #3 (Final Draft):
During consultation, I got the idea of how the tide changes as the moon waxes and wanes. I thought that was really fitting for the fishing theme, so I included it in my first square. In my second square I did a illustration of a crayon in illustrator, made a pattern out of it, and placed the pattern upon the background of green grass, The crayon is red to represent how energetic children are, and the green pasture represents how lively, pure and down to earth they are as well. In my final square, I adopted the dramatic fishing composition and also tried out a new brush to paint the sea and the fish in FireAlpaca. (analagous)
Situation #4 (Draft 1):
Trait: Calm demeanor but insecure
-Many of my friends tell me that I am ‘chill’, but on the inside, I really am constantly on the verge of having a meltdown because I overthink about everything way too much. (it’s all internal)
Social situation: Being accompanied by my group of close friends
Setting: Dandelion field
Dandelions represent childhood, and the way they disperse their seeds are like how childhood friends eventually grow up along different life paths and grow apart from each other. But in my case, I have a close group of primary school friends who, even though have grown up to take on immensely different challenges, still stick close together like glue.
Calm and insecure + Accompanied by close friends = Being empowered by my friends
Bubble + Dandelion field = Bubble burst by dandelion
-Around this group of friends, I can really let out my insecurities and be comfortable around myself.
4th row (Draft 1):
Situation #4 (Draft 2):
So I scraped the previous idea entirely because it was way too cliche and predictable. (it was nice but way too subpar HAHA)
I kind of took the liberty to work backwards but I thought it actually works because I can have a rough concept of the outcome much earlier.
Instead, I thought up a new outcome first!!
This is an actual photo of me during my secondary school prom. I borrowed the horse mask from my classmate. It was irresistable.
I thought of how the idiom ‘dark horse’ is used to represent someone who unexpectedly changes from underdog to the master of a game/competition. So to contrast this, I planned to put 2 white horses on the side of a table and have the 3 horses play a game of Uno. Because that’s probably the only competitive game I’m good at.
Situation #4 (Final Draft):
The first photo is me spouting out some trippy looking spirals out with an analogous colour scheme around the green/purple sideo of the colour wheel to represent nervousness and abhorrence towards competition. In the background you can see the typical game controller symbols to suggest gaming as a form of competitive activity.
In the second square, I digitally painted a game of Uno going on (it was so hard to find reference images that had the exact angle that I wanted). Uno represents something that I’m relatively better at and am willing to lay out my skills for all to see 😀
In the last square, I made a photo collage of the planned composition above. (Never thought I would get to use my prom photo like this but totally worth it). In the background, I used a luminous neon purple triangular hypnotic pattern to represent how ecstatic I am. Purple is also a royal colour and I have a crown on my head, so it suggests how big of a deal I assume myself to be when I get ever so slightly good at something. 😀
I’m actually really thankful that we got to do this project because
- We literally have not touched colour at all in drawing class and we are finally free to use colour in this activity.
- This project introduced different colour harmonies to me; I am now much more aware of different colour harmonies intentionally at play when I look at posters and advertisements in public.
- I managed to pick up Illustrator!!! A little time consuming, but the vector style makes everything look so professional.
4. I would say one of the biggest difficulties I faced aside from the technical part of using Illustrator was figuring out me. I get existential and identity crisis from time to time and through this project (all the feedback from friends, online quizzes and tarot cards), I managed to figure out at least 4 different characteristics of myself. This project was really therapeutic and I would highly recommend it to the next batch of students. 😀
5. Through this project, I was also better able to exercise the use of visual language to get my point across. The regular consultations also really helped me to bring my ideas to further heights (and weird places as well) that I would never have thought of on my own. Sometimes, you need others to know who you are. 😀 Through identifying symbols/representations of my different facades and egos, I learned how to put them into a context and build a narrative within that new context that somehow parallels with the message I am trying to convey about my personality. All in all, it was a very enlightening experience. *shines*