I think I need to work on my confidence with my own decisions, which is something that I struggle with especially closer to deadlines. I often second guess myself and overwork things due to my anxiety about getting things 'wrong' or things being 'not good enough'. However, I feel like I stressed less in this project than I have on previous projects. Despite my project feeling counter intuitive to me, I think it gave me the freedom I needed to explore the technology in a creative manner without feeling the pressure of getting things 'right'.
It made me recognize my interest in VFX and Maya overall, which I think was always there but I feel now that I was forcing myself to be mostly interested in drawing when in reality my interests also include VFX and 3D. I'm surprised I was able to use software that didn't use drawing (ex. Photoshop) to create something I feel is more like a fine art piece than traditional CGI animation. I now know that with some work, I can work with software such as Maya or After Effects to be more flexible and creative than I originally thought.
Before showing my animation I was very concerned people wouldn't 'get it', but after showing it in the crit I'm more confident that I portrayed my message in the way that I wanted and that it was received well. It seemed that people understood it more than I thought they would, so I'm proud of myself for being able to trust in the process and go against all of the thoughts in my head screaming that I wasn't doing what I was 'supposed' to be doing. I found it a very freeing and liberating experience, similar to how I felt when I was making artwork to cope with my mental illness a few years ago.
Part of me wishes that I prepared myself more for the making an animation, but at the same time I think it was good for me to just go where the project took me rather than obsessing over the final outcome as much as I normally do. It has taught me that stripping things out is sometimes just as effective as adding more things in, and just because I experiment with things does not mean I need to include it in the final product. It's just part of the process and they are skills that could be used elsewhere on another project.
Looking back at the beginning of the project, I'm glad I abandoned the more stereotypical 'horror' aesthetic for something different. I enjoyed applying what I was reading for my Dissertation into my project, it made everything feel more relevant, mature, and respectful as mentioned in the crit. I tried to apply the concept of uncanniness throughout my project from my models to my soundscape to get my experiences across, and I'm glad it seemed to be successful.
I was also very self conscious that my Art Of was too long and would be boring, but I feel reassured that it is a good habit to showcase the process as long as I don't go too overboard. I also felt more comfortable in this project to include more writing on both my blog and my Art Of to explain my thought process and my work. I really enjoyed this project and I look forward to seeing might come out of trying to share it more with others and what options I have for my third year.
In the crit it was suggested I reach out and send my animation to the Wellcome Trust or something similar. I would love to iron out the jitters of my animation and send it out to a few places if possible. The topic of mental illness is very important to me and I'm hopeful that my animation leaves enough of an impact that it could be 'educational' or helpful to some people.