The online element

After the exhibition I focussed on modifying the elements of the story to post on social media as I had originally planned. 

I had decided on a less distinctive house for this stage, both to protect the privacy of the knitter, and because the story has evolved for me, to be also about the extraordinary within the ordinary. Maybe extraordinary is the wrong word to use here but I want to get people to look with curiosity at their immediate surroundings and to challenge the prejudices that people who live in suburbia are boring.

Using the terraced houses from my earlier post I struggled to get the greenery right.

In this version it really looks bolted on. Returning to the theme of the wool I printed the drawing onto light card and sewed the hedge.

This is much more in keeping with the rest of the project, and I’m much happier with it. 

I considered redrawing the figure with the dog but it was becoming stiff and losing fluidity so I used Procreate to paste some versions over this base.

When I laid them out I realised that the wool I’d added didn’t meet when it crossed the frames so I moved it for publication. The first three images have the background cleaned up but I used the original version to make the rainy scene.

I tried various methods to make the rain, still not sure that it’s absolutely right.

Is it really necessary to have this element to the story? I used it to set the scene and to explain why I walk through the streets looking in windows, but it’s not an essential part of the tale. My followers on social media are predominately veterinary friends and people who like my animal drawings so for the Instagram release it will attract their attention, but for a wider audience of people who aren’t bothered about dogs it might not be as useful.

How to generate interest in the windows within a small square frame?

Pictures without the distraction of the figure. 

Or zooming in on the window:

Maybe I’ll zoom in on these? They’re brighter and clearer than the whole house, I think that they’re more attractive. I decided to release the first two images of the whole house as a teaser on stories in the morning and the windows by themselves later in the day.

I experimented with different ways to increase the size of the windows and focus the viewers eye.

I think that the whole windows work better, the fragments are confusing. Most viewers use Instagram on a phone which was the platform it was designed for, so although incrementally increasing the size of the windows looks good here…

….the smallest window will be hard to see. I am therefore, going to post the windows sequentially in the same  post and keep them all the same size

For a long time I have wanted to animate the hedge growing up and being cut back. I redid my knitting so that I could reveal the new house and videoed it on my phone. It’s impossible to unwind wool smoothly so I exported the video into iMovie and cut out the pauses. The resulting video is fine for the hedge being cut but it needed reversing for it to look like it was growing. iMovie for iPad doesn’t have a reverse button and my mac is so old that I can’t run the program any more. My original plan was to get one of my kids to reverse the movie although its a big file.

I also wanted there to be wool in the window when the hedge grows up so I explored the video editing capabilities of Procreate, first by adding a blob of colour. 

This was reasonably successful but I’d failed to appreciate that when I rubbed out any mistakes although the individual frame looked fine when I ran the movie there were white flashes.

I redid the balls of wool being careful not to use the rubber facility. When I ran the movie wool looked like it  was pulsing because the individual frames were hand drawn. I’m sure that there is a way to create a brush or something so that a consistently sized ball of wool appears in each frame but my time to learn about the program is limited. The pulsing does draw attention to the ball of wool, I had it moving around the window in my first version but it just looks odd to me so I edited it to stay still. Whilst playing with Procreate I found the ping pong feature which made the hedge grow up and recede. This laid out the frames back to front which was brilliant, I sent the movie back to iMovie and cut the receding hedge part so I had just the growing bit.

The flashing ball of wool was irritating me so I sewed some real wool into my picture

Again  I experimented with colouring the ball of wool to represent the change but it’s not professional enough for this project. 

With the set up I have (my phone and a swan neck holder) I don’t have the option to switch the coloured wool without moving everything. I’ve edited it so the hedge starts to grow up close to the start so hopefully it won’t look too out of place

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Hello, I’m Cal (short for Caroline) I make illustrations to explain things, to tell stories and to share the beauty of the world around me. I’m a qualified veterinary nurse so a lot of my work is veterinary subjects, but I’m fascinated by how illustrations and stories can aid learning and understanding.  When I’m not working I draw to celebrate, to record, to relax and to understand what I see. 

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