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Magic Lantern

When I was young, I struggled with depression and a troubled home life.
It sometimes felt like I was wandering through a dark, scary forest filled with monsters.
But art and stories gave me hope. They helped me imagine a better life and let me see that good can conquer the darkness.
It was like finding a magic lantern that illuminated the good things and drove away the bad - helping me have the courage to face my monsters.
Now that I'm a grown-up artist and storyteller, I want to share the light of the magic lantern with you - to help you on your own journey.

Gif creation process

I created this series of gifs using the metaphor of a Magic Lantern to articulate my journey and goals as a children’s illustrator. The animations were made using Procreate, Photoshop and After Effects. Here are some images showing my process:

Rough sketch.
I like to work in Procreate using texture brushes that look like pencil or lithograph. As I’m building my layers, I use arbitrary colors to separate the shapes.
Then I draw in the values and textures.
I then composed the different pieces of animation in After Effects.
Seamlessly looping background made using both Procreate and Photoshop.
Same thing for this background.
Again using arbitrary colors to separate the layers. This one required a lot of layers for all the moving parts.
The fairy became a side motif throughout the gifs. You can see him fly by the car window in gif 3, sitting on the tree in gif 4, and of course playing a pipe next to adult-me in my studio in gif 5.