Title Sequence for "The Yellow Wallpaper"

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Created: 05/09/12
Last Edited: 11/21/12
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Description
This eerie, surrealistic yarn from the late Victorian era appeals to me on multiple levels. First, in terms of content and message. It is important to recognize how far we have come since the 1890s in the area of mental health awareness. However, misperceptions still prevail in some circles, and we are not past the era of “remedies worse than the disease”. What is obvious in retrospect is not so clear in the moment. For instance, we know today that most Victorian-era wallpaper was made with trace amounts of arsenic -- so it may not be merely a metaphor when we say that “the wallpaper drove her insane.” The trendy, blanket diagnosis of “hysteria” might not be as far off from some of today’s trendy diagnoses as we think.

Secondly, the story appeals to me on a purely visual level. The writing style creates an atmosphere of eerie anticipation, slowly building to a thrilling climax. The imagery she employs is quite potented -- a haunted estate, luxurious gardens, a horrifically baroque wallpaper pattern, and silhouettes of woman appearing behind it. When I read the story I immediately wanted to see it in motion. Unfortunately, I do not yet possess the skills and resources to give this story the surrealistic feature-length film it deserves. So, rather than cheapen the suspense by trying to condense such an epic story into a ten-minute reel, I decided to make an extended title sequence which would capture the rich imagery and suspenseful mood of the story. It was exciting to reinvestigate my painting technique and begin exploring animation.
  • The Yellow Wallpaper
    Title Sequence Based on the Short Story by Charlotte Perkins Gilman

  • This eerie, surrealistic yarn from the late Victorian era appeals to me on multiple levels. First, in terms of content and message. It is important to recognize how far we have come since the 1890s in the area of mental health awareness. However, misperceptions still prevail in some circles, and we are not past the era of “remedies worse than the disease”. What is obvious in retrospect is not so clear in the moment. For instance, we know today that most Victorian-era wallpaper was made with trace amounts of arsenic -- so it may not be merely a metaphor when we say that “the wallpaper drove her insane.” The trendy, blanket diagnosis of “hysteria” might not be as far off from some of today’s trendy diagnoses as we think.

    Secondly, the story appeals to me on a purely visual level. The writing style creates an atmosphere of eerie anticipation, slowly building to a thrilling climax. The imagery she employs is quite potent -- a haunted estate, luxurious gardens, a horrifically baroque wallpaper pattern, and silhouettes of woman appearing behind it. When I read the story I immediately wanted to see it in motion. Unfortunately, I do not yet possess the skills and resources to give this story the surrealistic feature-length film it deserves. So, rather than cheapen the suspense by trying to condense such an epic story into a ten-minute reel, I decided to make an extended title sequence which would capture the rich imagery and suspenseful mood of the story. It was exciting to reinvestigate my painting technique and begin exploring animation.

    This eerie, surrealistic yarn from the late Victorian era appeals to me on multiple levels. First, in terms of content and message. It is important to recognize how far we have come since the 1890s in the area of mental health awareness. However, misperceptions still prevail in some circles, and we are not past the era of “remedies worse than the disease”. What is obvious in retrospect is not so clear in the moment. For instance, we know today that most Victorian-era wallpaper was made with trace amounts of arsenic -- so it may not be merely a metaphor when we say that “the wallpaper drove her insane.” The trendy, blanket diagnosis of “hysteria” might not be as far off from some of today’s trendy diagnoses as we think.

    Secondly, the story appeals to me on a purely visual level. The writing style creates an atmosphere of eerie anticipation, slowly building to a thrilling climax. The imagery she employs is quite potent -- a haunted estate, luxurious gardens, a horrifically baroque wallpaper pattern, and silhouettes of woman appearing behind it. When I read the story I immediately wanted to see it in motion. Unfortunately, I do not yet possess the skills and resources to give this story the surrealistic feature-length film it deserves. So, rather than cheapen the suspense by trying to condense such an epic story into a ten-minute reel, I decided to make an extended title sequence which would capture the rich imagery and suspenseful mood of the story. It was exciting to reinvestigate my painting technique and begin exploring animation.

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