Friday, 18 January 2013

Script to Screen: Influence Maps and Ideas

I'm still interested in including the dream/hallucinating/drunk sequence in the story. So i've made up a couple of influence maps showing a real world setting and how the dream world might look.

Id like to make the dreamy world more vibrant and abstract in comparison to the real world. since the animation is limited to a minute, id like the short sequence to be quite interesting and memorable, but also to carry on leading the story. 

For the real world setting, or how it will look at the beginning and end of the animation, i'm trying to decide what the time period might be, so far im trying to decide between a Victorian world, an 18th century or a post WWI/II setting. The reason i was leaning towards these two settings is as it would provide a good reason for the alcohol that the character drinks, to hallucinate so much.

After doing some research, I found some information on the 'Gin Craze' within the 18th century. Roughly in the 1730's London, 10 million gallons of gin were being distilled and roughly 14 gallons was consumed by each person a year. To get their fix of Gin, quite often homemade versions were being created. Turpentine and sulphuric acid was being used, leading to poisoning. Though it was also blamed for an increase in crime, prostitution, madness, high death rates and low birth rates. 

The print below was part of a two piece print along with 'beer street', and was designed to shock and show the effects of the gin craze. The image shows decay  suicide, starvation along with probably the most shocking image of a woman dropping her baby whilst drunk. 

Gin Lane by William Hogarth
So, i'm thinking about placing my character within this time period, just to give the character a background and design, and maybe suggest the reason for why he just picks up the alcohol/wine and drinks it, in my potential storyline, and also to explain the hallucination scene. 


  1. Hey Vikki,

    I really like this aspect of your research - giving yourself lots of production design options. From reading over your new story developments, I suppose I'm a bit unsure about the emphasis on the real see-saw (appearing on the label etc.), just because I don't think it's necessary, especially in terms of your dream sequence; see-saws are metaphors for balance, for liberty, for the 'scales of justice', so perhaps thinking about this mechanism more symbolically might relax your grip a bit; for example, you've got a Hogarth image here, but he also produced images entitled The Rake's Progress - which is essentially a cautionary tale about following a life of vice and hedonism; perhaps, your drunken gravedigger could see, as part of his dream sequence, a giant set of 'moral' scales, which he is sliding up and down on (the dangers of booze etc.). I'm not sure if you're still going with the 'grave-digger digs his way into wine cellar or hidden gin stash', but there is a logic here to a) his job connecting him (literally) to the cellar environment and b) the cellar connecting to his drunken hallucinations. You might want to research Cornish smugglers (and that time period) because smugglers were reputed to use tunnels etc to store their contraband, so maybe your gravedigger is Cornish and digs his way into a smuggler's cellar, perhaps filled with barrels stolen from wrecked ships...

    When it comes to your third act - i.e. post-dream sequence - it does feel as if we need some kind of pay-off, or twist or punchline; something giving the audience more information than they had previously, or reframing the original story or similar - any ideas?

    1. Thank you for your feedback Phil, Okay a lot more ideas are coming to mind when thinking about making the seesaw metaphorical, and the smuggler idea is interesting, i'll look into all those things :)