Idea 1 – A Character Profile

Initial Idea:

The first idea for this project that came to mind was due to the way in which I used to come up with vivid and varied characters for my Sylvanians when I was younger. This came about as recently I have been going through my collection, along with my sisters, putting into one and into proper storage.

While we were going through it all being the organised geeks as were are we started to categorise and create an inventory of everything we had. We had collected a lot during our childhood years, mainly as birthday gifts, and when it came to the figures we had created our own names and family groups. There was also an intricate social structure and back story to these imaginary characters that we had come up with all those years ago and we thought we should put down on paper what we could remember of it. We had everything from adoptions, lost twin brothers, singe parent families, divorces, family traditions…there was a lot. (To think we didn’t watch any soaps back then either!)

Anyway the imagination of a child is a powerful one and it was that which sparked my idea. To create a stop-frame animation based in a Sylvanian house that would allow the user to interact with various objects so that they could build up an image of the character that lived in that house within this imaginary world.

Developing the Idea:

An interactive house to learn about a character.

The house would be interactive so as to learn about the character that inhabits it.

The user would be able to look around the house using a mouse pointer and certain areas or objects would become highlighted to show that they could be interacted with. Once the user clicked on these areas and objects an animation/sound would play sometimes accompanied by text to give the user some information about the character that lives there.


Scanned image from a Sylvanian Family story book.

Image scanned from 'Acorn Oakwood Prepares for Winter' published by Fantail (1988)

After finding some of the story books produced for the Sylvanian Families it became clear where I got this idea from. Having read these as a child it inspired me to set up scenes using my own collection and create a story for the day that me and my sister would then play out. It took the simple route of setting up a scene using the same furniture and figures that could be purchased taking a photo of it and then using text alongside to tell the story.

Analysis of Idea:

Obviously this is an idea that it pandering to my own want to create an interactive piece based on something I held dear as a child and has only come alive in my imagination before. It is not taking into account the target audience, which in regards to the brief, is technically the class as we have to present our work for critique by the lectures and the class at the end of the project.

I also fear that although it sounds simple on paper and having had practice at setting up scenes, it may not be technically easy. Planning out and creating each piece of interaction will be time consuming as anything is that involves stop-frame animation. Also the small matter of taking decent photos of everything, taking into account lighting and the scale of these things. The models are very small and will require particular set up to photograph well.