Tuesday, August 14, 2012

The High School Graduation Project

Art Appreciated 
A project that I would describe as a milestone in my Animating Journey. 

     2011 was a great year for me and my friend Mohammed Al-Guthmi.. A year we proved that we can make a major project in just a few months, about a very great cause, concerning the Saudi community and youth.

     In my School "Dar al-Fikr" every senior must present a graduation project. This project counts as a class and affects your GPA. Projects could be about anything, and a single project can have up to a team of 4. 

    Two of my Friends Abdulrahman Linjawi, and Abdulrahman Badayyan, Suggested that I make my graduation project about Art and the value of it, and even suggested that I team up with my buddy Mohammed Al-Guthmi for his great Artistic sense. 

    I talked with my Friend Mohammed about the Idea and we agreed to do it together as team. The school requires that we make a presentation, and a small booklet explaining our project. After many meetings, we decided that on top of that we create a, small short cartoon, big Banners to show off the idea in school, and design our own thobes -Saudi uniform- that went a long with the theme of our project. 

    We split the tasks , Mohammed was responsible for writing and arranging the idea, recording the voice over for the cartoon, bringing the green fabric from his Father's company for our Thobes, and arrange the Presentation. I on the other hand was responsible for Making all the design work, designing the booklet, the presentation, animating the cartoon, and creating the Logo. All of this was in the end supervised by both of us, and we both helped out each other to make this project work, and create a great cause. 

The Logo phases... 

    I must thank Basmah Felemban for her great comments and suggestions for this Logo at first, as a great designer her critiques were always right on. This Idea came to mind when I was at the American Embassy in Riyadh, I was busy doodling and this idea popped out.

  The name of this project was not yet official. We were wondering between Art Undefined and Art Appreciated, we finally named the project "Art Appreciated", because our whole idea was to make it appreciated in our community and country that really pushes art away.

  The colors at first were rather boring and uninteresting, so I decided to give the logo the look of the Saudi passport, dark green with a little bit of gold here and there. Combine the Saudi logo "two swords and a Palm Tree" with the word art. To create an Idea that Art is the palm tree, and these two swords represent the community that doesn't appreciate it. Another thank must go to the amazing Calligrapher Mohammed Ghulman, who wrote the "Art Appreciated" in Arabic for the logo, it was amazingly done.

Attempt #1


the Beginning...

Final Result with Ghulmans Calligraphy
Attempt #3

and the End...

The "Art Dubai" Trip

   To professionalize this project even more, I decided to take a trip to Dubai and attend the ArtDubai gallery and event. The main goals were to contact Arab artists, take a lot of pictures of unique artistic material made by them, get to see the artistic community, gather information and data, and above all a source of inspiration for this project. 

The Short Animation

    The short animation was a challenge, but rather an amazing one. Like any animation you always need a story then a storyboard to start with, and that task required a lot of brain storming with my buddy Mohammed alguthmi. It took a lot of sleepless nights, I would go to his house and stay up all night animating and making this Animation happen. 

    I truly believed that having this Animation along with the presentation and booklet will prove a very distinctive point to the judges, which is how much we value art, and how we're willing to take it to the next level with this graduation project.

    While making this Animation, we came to a point where doing the voice over was a pain in the ass. I was obviously not a good narrator, I struggled with the recording and had to record countless times and always rejected it. Yet my friend Mohammed came up to me and told me that he'll give it a shot.. and so he did.. and the result was AMAZING !  

Here is the 4 minute Animation with subtitles.

The Presentation:  

We were very nervous on that day, but we were very well prepared. The presentation, Booklets, Thobes, Banners, and of course the Animation.

The booklet..

The booklet was written by my Teammate and friend Mohammed Al-Guthmi, and designed by me. It was uniquely printed so u flip it upwards. The Booklet was printed for each of the Judges. 


    They say dress to impress, and so we did. Our project theme was the color green, so Mohammed got us some green fabric from his father's Fabric company "Al-Guthmi". We went to a shop who designed our thobes with that fabric. We entered the Presentation and the judges were shocked. Because this was definitely unexpected since the usual color of a thobe is white. 

The Banners..

Simple, Huge, and appealing... that was the message.

Finally the Presentation

   Mohammed and I, controlled the presentation using both our iphones, with the keynote app, we added notes, that we were able to read right off the iphone, and noted each slide with the name of whoever's turn it is to talk. 

   Best of all the whole thing was recorded and is on youtube.. 


   I really hoped that by this project I was able to convey a message to the Saudi community about the value of Art and how we really can't leave Art out of the picture. It was an amazing Journey that I had with my friend Mohammed, going through the writing of the idea, the interviews we made with Design companies, the trip to Dubai, the Animation, Presentation and Booklet. It was all worth it.. We Received a grade of 97 and the Judges were more than satisfied.. even though we didn't really go by the rule book they gave us. Yet we stuck to our time limit and conveyed the message artistically and with passion. 

waiting for the Judges critiques.. :P

note: I would like to thank everyone I couldn't cover in this blog, and not everything in the presentation in written here, so watch the video if you didn't do so yet.

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