Thursday, 11 June 2009

Mad Ferret - finally documented

So in May/June Kat, Nia and myself were picked out to create the interior of the Caribbean Umbrella (ridiculous, irrelevant name) tent for Mad Ferret festival. It was a fun and also stressful and confusing experience that introduced me to some areas of working that I have never been part of before.

The theme began with fairytale/jazz and moved more towards fairytale/royal family/grandma's sitting room. We wanted to try and make some of the areas of the tent a bit more humorous which is why we chose the royal family as they are a bit of a joke. (Although this didn't go down too well with the organiser - another lesson in following briefs!) Other areas of the tent were a bit less specific with regard to personalities or characters as we really just wanted to create a feel of a fairytale atmosphere - something a bit surreal and out of place in a way. Our main inspiration for this was a Vogue photo shoot by Tim Walker; this shoot was a celebration of Roald Dahl's children's books and he took a contemporary approach using famous personalities and models who were quite different to the characters in the books.

His use of props and the way that they were suspended and arranged had a real influence on us and the way we wanted to approach the set of the tent. We tried to capture elements of the photoshoot (the fabric bubble gum room) in the two cabinets that we worked with. We suspended light fittings and antique frames to try and make a sort of tangled up room inside a box. The royal cabinet was a bit more crowded than the red and gold one and I think I prefer the red one as the effect of the suspense seemed to work more effectively.

I wrote the first part of this blog really soon after putting the tent together and now I can't remember anything! I'll put up some of the photo's that Nia and Emily took and make comments as I see things.

These few shots are just of the main craft work in process, we used the Chapel as a work space which was quite a challenge because it was always so messy and a bit scary because of the amount of power tools hanging around. The cabinets are visible in the background of the left hand photo but it's difficult to see the full effect of them on such a small picture. The right hand photo is of some 3D lettering that Nia and Charlotte made for the stage area. As the theme was fairytale we decided to use the classic phrase 'Once upon a time' to create a storybook atmosphere.

The photo on the left is of the Hansel and Gretel house that Emily and I decorated. We found the dolls house frame in the Chapel and had the idea that it could be used as a replication of the gingerbread house from the fairytale. This was probably my least favourite part of the decoration as I ended up thinking that it was too fiddly and small scale compared with some of the other more extravagant area's of the tent.

This next image was probably one of my favourite of the 3 boards that we made. As the tent was part cafe/part entertainment we had to provide seating areas. Rick suggested that we create booths with decorative dividers. The image on the left is one of the dividers, Emily and I were influenced by the work of our friend Helen (Interactive Arts) she also used teardrop shaped pillows in an exhibition piece at the end of her 3rd year. They were quick and easy to make and covered a large area really well. Although there was no clear cut link with the fairytale theme, they gave quite a surreal impression.

It's taking me far too long to finish this blog so I'm now just going to upload the photos and put it out there because I'm BORED of writing it.

In the end I was pleased with the outcome, it was quite hard work but worth it when we finally heard the reactions of the people involved with the tent and of some of the crowd coming through. I think we may have put in a lot more effort than was expected of us but in the end the experience was worth the time and work.

1 comment:

  1. Hey Emma, I really like that Vogue photoshoot based on Roahld Dahl- I love Roahld Dahl!