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  • I'm a storyteller I love narrative I love narratives that fuel stories and move them

  • along and we see the experience of life through them

  • When I was a child I went to ballet school, followed my sister to ballet school when I

  • was seven and loved it so much that I decided that I wanted to be a dancer and so I went

  • to London to school to study dance and realised quite quickly that dance was not really for

  • me, I wanted to be a choreographer, I didn't fancy being a dancer who had to do everything

  • that other people said so I became a choreographer and I had a career as a choreographer until

  • I was in my late thirties. I was also directing in the theatre, I worked around the world

  • and occasionally I designed productions as well. I began to draw and to paint which is

  • not something I'd ever done. I'd drawn but I'd never painted. Things started to evolve

  • for me and I had a second career which I'm still in which is as an artist.

  • We are talking about the built environment, we are talking about the historic environment,

  • we're talking about heritage and that's something I do know about because ever since I was a

  • child I've wondered around castles and imagined what they would be like and wondered around

  • great houses and imagined what it might have been like to live in them. I love taking all

  • those things from different places and putting them all in a box and keeping them close to

  • me and then taking them out when I need them so when I come to do a job like this job that

  • I'm doing now for English Heritage I've got all these toys in the box and I know exactly

  • where to go to rootle them out and what would be perfect for the brief and to make it work

  • and that's a treat.

  • When we got the brief through from English Heritage we were really really excited. One

  • of the things that we were struck by was that it was a really interesting technology challenge

  • which is something that we love doing. One of the things that we were most drawn to and

  • I know that I was really excited about was heraldic illustration and being able to incorporate

  • things like dragons and mythical being which is not something that we typically get to

  • do so that was hugely exciting, that was a really nice approach.

  • When we saw the brief for this project obviously we were really excited. With illustration

  • as well, often you see online maps everyone's used to using Google it's flat it's graphic

  • it's really easy to use obviously but this was less about a map as a thing to navigate

  • but more as an exploration piece, a piece of artwork.

  • I think because it's quite an illustration rich website and we've got so many assets

  • of images and layers and things that we've put into it that's quite unusual, a lot of

  • the time now design is taking a more flat image-less kind of route so it's interesting

  • to actually put all of that into the app in such a scale that we have done it and for

  • it to work really quickly and be performant on mobile and tablets and anything that you

  • throw at it really.

  • You have a mini map that shows you where you are in relation to the rest of the UK and

  • we were trying to think about how you could as you drag around the map you could move

  • the focus spots on the mini map. You want it to be a seamless experience. We want it

  • to be easy we want them to get the fully immersive experience of being able to drag around the

  • UK and find all these myths and legends.

  • Obviously we want to preserve as much of Clive's style as possible. When Clive is illustrating

  • the map it's a huge canvas and it looks incredible it looks amazing and that's normally how people

  • view a map is they open it out unfold it uncover lots of things all at once and then they can

  • hone in on a certain area, little forest critters or sea creatures looming round the coastline

  • dragging ships down, yeah, it just started to get really exciting.

  • This is my painting room, this is my easel currently covered not in paintings but in

  • drawings for telling tales.

  • We're up to artex world now, this horrible rough plaster which is due to come off but

  • we haven't got around to it but it's my secret weapon. When you use it to make rubbings you

  • get these lovely textures that are quite three-dimensional, and so the textures of the map were made from

  • rubbing pencils over paper on top of my artex walls in my studio.

  • Old maps are full of these sea monsters. Here's one of my references which is this fantastic

  • book on sea monsters on medieval and renaissance maps and that's been really useful to look

  • at and so although I'm working in my own style I'm using historic references. One of the

  • things that will happen on the map, the first thing that we see is what we're calling a

  • cartouche. What you'll have is this light shape over a dark background and there will

  • be writing in the middle of it and then the digital eye goes through this and descends

  • through clouds and onto the map. English Heritage presenting a map about myths and legends.

  • So we have references to buildings in care and we've used George and the Dragon as the

  • crowning glory of this particular cartouche because George is one of the characters that

  • we'll be investigating and they just add a little sweetness to the feel of going into

  • an environment that we're going to be drawn into because it's a living, breathing environment.

  • I think one of the things about animation, one of the things about puppetry is that you

  • need to get the feeling that the characters are breathing, that there's life going on.

  • Stillness is kind of death, movement is life and so just having a little bit of animation

  • will be quite charming and will lead us through and then as we go through little flights of

  • birds go past as we go down, descend through the clouds and then all of a sudden here we

  • are, we see the map.

I'm a storyteller I love narrative I love narratives that fuel stories and move them

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B1 map clive heritage english heritage illustration environment

Making the Map | Telling Tales with Clive Hicks-Jenkins

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    Summer posted on 2020/06/08
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