“Notification” is an animation piece created by Jade Araya and Jussica Ranhotra. It is meant to depict a common struggle amongst young adults and teens alike: confessing their feelings to their crush. It is also a rather cheeky PSA which warns the audience to update their computer, to be weary of pop-up ads, and to be careful when downloading items from the internet. The concept itself was inspired by the video game “Emily is Away” as the work is intended to create a very nostalgic and familiar feeling to the targeted audience. Its intended viewers are people in their late teens and young adults. This is due to the fact that this work is specifically based off of the on goings of messenger apps such as those on yahoo and msn which specifically became popular around the time that they were children and/ or teenagers.
The narrative structure hit on six major points; the exposition, inciting incident, rising action, climax, falling action and resolution. Both the dialogue and the typography in the messaging styles of various characters were utilized in a way to emphasize certain characteristics and differentiate them from one another. We also chose to utilize slang and typing styles of the early 2000s to further emulate this era and add to the believability of this piece’s temporal context.
The sounds in “Notification” are all a collection of sound effects provided on the Westar audio library. After importing the audio into Protools, the sounds were then given a “roto speaker” effect in order to add a fuzzier sound. This is both as a means to provide information that the technology is older than the current electronics, and to create a dream-like feeling as if someone were to recall a memory. The reasoning behind the absence of music in “Notification” is due to the desire to call attention to the conversation in the messenger window to emphasize the complexities of conversation that can take place in just one window.
In total, 23 illustrator files were created in order to construct the feeling of being on an old computer. Every visual aspect was created after careful observation of older websites and movements (such as the “Azn Pride movement”). The aesthetic of the motion graphics itself is rather simplistic with its simple changes in opacity, position, and size. Aside from the actual mechanics of a messenger, it was also meant to help the viewer focus on the narrative. In addition to emulating the messenger aesthetics of the early 2000s, we also took into consideration the design principles and their influence on the artistic representations of background scenery and characters.
In terms of the division of labour, Jade took over the the aesthetic creation of the piece through the illustrator files, audio elements, text animations and overall animation of the first 120 seconds of the piece. Jussica took over the narrative structure, character development, dialogue, typing styles and latter 120 seconds of the piece. We feel that the animation is rather effective due to the positive feedback given during its progress meaning that the work has its intended effect. We achieved the narrative style and visual aesthetics that we were originally attempting to recreate. We utilized the design principles and minimalistic sound design in manner that is complementary to the story.