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    For my senior thesis project, I created a collection of concept art, illustrations, and animatics based on three of Rudyard Kipling's 'Just So St… Read More
    For my senior thesis project, I created a collection of concept art, illustrations, and animatics based on three of Rudyard Kipling's 'Just So Stories.' Read Less
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How the Camel Got His Hump
 
One of Kipling's most famous stories.  The Camel lives alone in the Howling Desert, and each day he is visited by another animal and is invited to work.  All the Camel says in response is "humph."  The animals complain to the Djinn of All Deserts, who curses the Camel with a hump as punishment for being lazy.
Turnaround, gestures, and expressions for the Camel.  His design is flat and angular to contrast with his eventual hump.  Much of his structure is based on diamonds, a frequently occuring shape in Middle Eastern art.
Gestures for the Djinn. I envisioned him as powerful, yet with a sense of humor.  So while his design still has angles, it is also curvier.  For his clothing, I drew from Egyptian and Bedouin culture.
Environment illustration and callouts for the Howling Desert.  I saw the desert as a small oasis surrounded by dunes and dry, hardy plants.
Illustration of the story.  This is the moment right before the Djinn gives the Camel his hump.
 
"The Djinn sat down with his chin in his hand and began to think a Great Magic, while the Camel looked at his own reflection in the pool of water."  --Rudyard Kipling
The Elephant's Child
 
The Elephant's Child is very curious, and asks his family what the Crocodile eats for dinner.  His family offers no answer, and so he sets out to ask the Crocodile himself.  When he gets to the Limpopo River and asks him, the Crocodile snaps up the Elephant's nose and the two engage in a tug-of-war.  The Elephant escapes the Crocodile's grasp, but his nose is stretched out permanently into a trunk.
Turnaround, gestures, and expressions for the Elephant.  His design is based the shapes of Central African masks, such as ovals and rounded out squares and triangles.
Sketches for the Crocodile.  He is a sneaky character, tricking the Elephant into coming close to him.  His design uses shapes similar to the Elephant character, but sharper.
Environment illustration and callouts for the Limpopo River.  Some of the design is based off the real Limpopo River, but I also referenced Kipling's descriptions and took artistic liberties.
Sketches of food and props the Elephant uses in the story.
Illustration of the story.
 
""Then the Elephant's Child put his head down close to the Crocodile's musky, tusky mouth, and the Crocodile caught him by his little nose..." --Rudyard Kipling
The Tabu Tale
 
The Tabu Tale has a slightly different vibe to it than the other two stories I'm illustrating.  It is one of three stories featuring a little girl named Taffy and her parents.  Taffy is out hunting with her father Tegumai, whom she frustrates endlessly because she is scaring off all the animals with her noise and fidgeting.  She and Tegumai have a run-in with the Head Chief, and it is here that Taffy learns about Tabus and receives a necklace from the Chief.  Tabus here are similar to our idea of taboos--societal rules one must follow.  For example, there is an overfishing problem, so the Head Chief puts a Tabu on the River so nobody can fish there.  That night, Taffy and Tegumai work out a series of Tabu signals to use while out hunting, and Taffy does her absolute best to follow them because she is tired of being looked down upon as a child.
Turnaround, gestures, and expressions for Taffy.  She is a wild child and a daddy's girl.  Her design is based on the Cro Magnon people and Otzi the Ice Man.
Sketches for Tegumai.  He is a mighty hunter, but he is first and foremost a father.  I wanted him to look imposing while still being a relatable father figure.
Environment illustration and callouts for the cave and the surrounding area where the family lives.
Props used by Taffy and Tegumai throughout the story.
Illustration of the story.  This takes place at the very beginning, before Taffy has learned her lesson.
 
"She kept very unstill...So all the animals that they hunted - squirrels, beavers, otters, badgers, and deer, and the rabbits - knew when Taffy and her daddy were coming, and ran away" --Rudyard Kipling
Animatic companion to the illustration.  Tegumai scolds Taffy for scaring away all the animals.  She apologizes, only to make the same mistake again moments later.
Animatic of a later part of the story.  Taffy and Tegumai have put together a series of Tabus to use while hunting, one of which is the "Still Tabu" which commands one to stay completely still.  Tegumai uses it on Taffy when she is threatened by a wolf.