When I was tasked with this project to create an animation targeted at children, I was hesitant as I’m not the best with kids. Another thing I was worried about was having to work with bright colours as desaturated and muted colours are my go to. To immerse myself in the assignment, I re-watched a few cartoon series that I loved as a child. Charlie & Lola became the core inspiration for this task. I also had a good scroll on Pinterest and Bookdepository to study the design of children book covers to apply suitable themes in my animation.

Syaf’s character designs during the storyboarding process

Having to create a 7-8 minute animation for the first time felt daunting. Learning to destress and care for my mental well-being was important as the animation process can get mind-numbing at times. This is especially when there are mistakes within certain frames and I would have to amend them individually. Because of that, I was often burnt out after a productive day of editing. But I paced myself, and I would get back on my feet soon after.

Syaf’s final characters and their individual roles

After a few rounds of amendments, it was very satisfying to see the many hours of drawing come to life. Compared to my school projects, this new experience at Tuber gave me control over many significant aspects, such as the art direction, colour scheme and character design. An important takeaway was learning to find the middle ground between using my preferred art style and one that caters to the client and the audience.

My favourite part in this journey was having the opportunity to witness the voice recording process. I’ve always been curious about sound design and voice acting. So of course, I was mesmerised by everything during those hours in the studio.

Illustration by: Liew Xinyi