I'm currently a student studying Illustration, and I have been fortunate enough to be able to work on briefs relevant to my interests- I thought some people here may like to see this. One of the briefs was a project collaboration with Age UK, entitled 'Historic Wartime': we were to talk to elderly people from Stockport (a few of whom had dementia) about their memories and stories of the war, and then produce work based on this. The idea was to preserve memory, with the resulting work being assembled for use in a resource pack for use in schools, libraries and heritage centres.
I spoke to a 95 year old lady named Enid about her wartime experiences, which was great. She was very happy to tell her stories, and covered a nice range of topics. She started off by talking about the sound of the Luftwaffe bombers flying over the houses and how scary this was, to talking about her husband who served in the army in Italy. She mentioned how he was given a motorbike to ride that was far too big for him, and how he had helped an injured American soldier while there. I asked what she thought of the current "Keep Calm and Carry On" poster phenomena, and her thoughts of the propaganda at the time, to which she replied "it seemed good then, didn't it? Now it seems absolutely Corny!" -I thought that was great.
I produced a few quick sketches from various topics she mentioned, and chose one to develop: Enid recalled always having her gas mask, a memory of the war many can relate to. From this, I produced the following image- Behind her stands the Stockport viaduct.
I wanted the piece to have a ghostly aesthetic, working with the idea of memories as ghosts in places that still remain, inspired by the surreal "then and now" photo arrangements by Sergey Larenkov and others. The feedback received from Age UK was very positive, and I chose to take up a follow-up project to work with them further. One aspect of this required us to take our image and briefly animate it in some way, for a short DVD compilation that will be a part of the resource pack. I produced this:
Hope you like it!