Narrative, Short Animation

Setting & Symbolism for animation

Our main vision for this animation was to have it set in a nest resting on the highest tree above the forest. This shot would be very impactful for the intro but I feel that it lacks something for the scene.

Yes the sunrise in the distance could be interesting but I feel having a scene closer to home in a forrest would allow us to create a more vibrant and lively atmosphere.

Another problem I felt with the birds nest being so high is that it would create a sense of danger and unease. I believe making the setting in a more freindly enviroment would help give our animation that warm and welcoming atmosphere that our story gives. This would also allow us to show more life and sense of community in the story. I feel the nest being up so high compared to everything else will create a sense of isolation which could mix feelings towards the audiance.

Here is a quick mood board showing some settings I think could be useful to use for reference.

Symbolism of Water


I like the idea of having a waterfall or some form of flowing water in our scene. Not only would it be more visually appealing, it would show more life in the scene than just the birds. After some research I found out that Native American Indians used the symbol of flowing water to represent the continuity of life and the on going flow of time. Given that our story is about a mother bird and her chicks hatching I feel this would be a great tool of symbolism.

butterfly-smallAnother symbol used by the indians is the butterfly. Used to show the transformation of ones self or a messenger from the spirit world, the butterfly symbol has different meanings depending on its colour. For instance:

  • A black butterfly indicates bad news or illness
  • A yellow butterfly brings hope and guidance
  • A brown butterfuly signifies important news
  • A red butterfly signifies an important event
  • A white butterfly signifies good luck

I think the use of a yellow and red butterfly fluttering through our opening scene would be a nice little nod of symbolism as to what is going to happen.

8. Thunderbird-KwakiutlThe weather is another symbol used quite frequently in Native American Indian culture. It is a symbol of change, renewal and fertility. Lightning is another powerful symbol used and is commonly referred to the mythical spirit, the thunderbird. I think it would be cool to use thunder bird references for the design of our mother bird.

Reference for thunderbird image:*&imgdii=jBDmm4f4RT6pTM:&imgrc=lJfWV6RAKhbNlM:

The native American culture has grown on me through out this research, they had very spiritual beliefs in that every soul, human or animal is created equally as a gift from nature. Playing on this theme I feel we could tell a really compelling story through the behaviour of the mother bird, who is experienceing the miracle of life just as a human mother would.



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