In Passing Stories, nine year old Peanut’s life is changed after her grandmother, whom she calls Tittyboo, tells her about the safe keeper of stories, Mother Shannon. Peanut is lead on an adventure of story telling as Tittyboo weaves together some of the many stories kept safe by Mother Shannon. The telling passes along from narrator to narrator within the story to build a picture that Peanut herself must complete.
Structure and Inspiration
Passing Stories draws from the Arabic style of storytelling by nesting one story inside another. By using this technique the film weaves together eight distinct stories all within one narrative. Each of these individual stories is lead and narrated by its own unique character. These stories and characters are inspired by Southern American, African, Louisiana Creole, and Arabic folktales. The vignettes combine to create a broader picture of American lore as influenced by the story telling tradition across multiple cultures.
Along with it's unique narrative structure, Passing Stories will also feature an equally distinctive visual language as well. The first layer of storytelling will be told in a crisp digital format, but as the plot descends deeper into second hand accounts and tall tails the format transitions into atmospheric film and then into sequences of animation. As opposed to portraying fantastic ideas and imagery with realism Passing Stories aims to portray the more fantastic concepts with equally fantastic means of execution. In order to realize this, we intend to combine a wide array of visual techniques to bring the richly detailed stories within Passing Stories to life, including sculpture, installation, painting and drawing, and alternative animation.
About The Creators
“Though I originally began making work as a sculptor, as my interests expanded at school, finding my way to film was a natural progression. The greatest thing about film is its ability to combine the wide spectrum of fine arts disciplines into one cohesive showcase; its a binder above all else. I hope to really showcase that quality with Passing Stories by incorporating our backgrounds in sculpture, painting, drawing, installation, performance, and photography. A big theme in the film is the idea of weaving, weaving stories and memories and artifacts, but also on a technical level weaving all the great fine arts disciplines together to create something that really reflects our unique interests.”
You can check out some examples of my fine arts work here: http://hannahalpert.weebly.com/
“My interests range between photography, video, animation and weaving. I have experimented with using animation in video and weaving and scratching in photography. Mixing the use of technology with manual labor opens the door for many possibilities of creating and expanding imagination and how we see and in turn understand the world around us. Passing Stories incorporates all of our techniques and knowledge of film/video we have been honing for the last few years in order to offer a unique visual of storytelling.”
Making It Happen
In order to make Passing Stories a reality, our goal is to raise $7,000 over the course of our 30 day Kickstarter. Our dream budget would be $15,000, but as artists we're no strangers to finding creative means to stretch the budget. We will be contributing our own money as well because Passing Stories is truly a passion project for both of us. As soon as the money is raised we will spring into production phase (in fact we already have!) Our basic production schedule is to shoot in fall, post in winter and launch in spring. Without your help we would not be able to stick to this schedule, or bring this film to life at all! Your funds will directly hire our cast and crew, as well as drive our pre-production, production, and post production. Passing Stories can not be possible without you!
The Big Picture
We have some big goals for Passing Stories, and a lot of personal investment in the project. As seniors in college we would really like to exhibit everything we have learned over the last four years, as well as transition into life after school.The Student Academy Awards allows us the perfect opportunity to do this, and we hope to submit Passing Stories to the competition by the April deadline. Our ambitions don't end there either, we also hope to submit our film to festivals and short film competitions during the following year. But of course, none of these hopes could become a reality without the help and support of all of you!
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