I’ve been looking back at Medea (I posted Ninagawa’s theatre version earlier.) This is Pasolini and Maria Callas on the set of the Medea film. Her costumes are really wonderful, I want to bring some of this into Ariel’s costume. I like the cultural hybrid that makes up the film, Pasolini invented his own history, this is exemplified in the choice of music (parts are traditional Japanese music) and costume design.


Sansho Dayu

Drawings from the film by the phenomenal Kenji Mizoguchi, in english Sansho the Baliff. It’s a dreadfully sad film about a family that is separated and sold into slavery in Medieval Japan. The top drawing is from a particularly emotive moment in the film. The anguish aside, the costumes were really good to look at for a less ornate, yet still patterned kimono/hakama.

Prospero & Ariel

 This is Prospero striking a Mie Kabuki pose. This won’t happen in my animation as I have made him a musician rather than an actor, but I explored the possibility in a few drawings, It helped me to get to know him a bit better.

When I did these drawings I was watching Bando Tamasaburo’s dance in Wisteria Maiden. It was really helpful to try and capture Kabuki style movements for Ariel’s dance in my storyboard. The backwards bend is characteristic of Kabuki. You can see the kimono sleeves are becoming wings at the bottom.


The Beginning:

The end:

I’m reworking some parts in the middle before I begin the animatic later today. I’m really looking forward to getting some feedback on Monday, I think it will be really helpful at this point. I’ve chosen a three pieces of music I’d like to try on the animatic, to see which works best.

Geisha Boy Geisha Girl

This is a video piece I made with my sister Romy some years ago, but it’s relevant to this project. I was looking back at it for a close look at some details on the Geisha’s kimonos and the ornament they wear in their hair.

Princess Raccoon

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A theatrical and stylised film by Seijun Suzuki. The sets resemble those in Kabuki, with consciously artificial looking sets and props. Some of the sets (shown in this boat scene) are superimposed traditional paintings, like Kawamoto’s animations!

Kihachiro Kawamoto’s  Dojoji

An Actor’s Revenge

I wrote about Kon Ichikawa’s film An Actor’s Revenge in my essay. As it happens this background is a lot like the one I’m developing for my set. Blue on black. Incidentally this film is playing on the screen near the film studios at college.