A Virtual Neverland: Suspending Adulthood Through Animation for Kids
Savannah, Georgia: Savannah College of Art and Design (Atlanta)
Thesis (M.F.A.) -- Animation
Savannah College of Art and Design -- Department of Animation
Bibliography: pages 29-30
"Imaginary play is a critical part of early social and cognitive development during childhood in which children are able to act out – and in a sense – live out various experiences that they may or may not have actually had before. Over the years, children’s animation has become a staple in promoting children to engage in play in one way or another. This thesis seeks to identify the suspension of adulthood as a primary process through which adult creators and designers of animated content can effectively tap into the mind of a child in order to create content that is appealing to their demographic. The following argument breaks down the suspension of adulthood into two distinct narrative portrayals – the refusal or reluctance to grow up and/or a nostalgic return to childhood. The ability to temporarily forgo the concerns and responsibilities of adulthood plays a significant role in shaping content that reflects what children think, want, and feel, allowing them to engage with animated content and have an authentic imaginative play experience."
Includes the author's animated short film "Dream Catcher," the story of a boy who escapes from his loneliness for a time into a world of dreams and happiness where he finds a dreamcatcher and fantastical animals -- but later wonders whether his adventure really happened.
Keywords: animation, film, imaginary play, kid’s media, children, suspension of adulthood
CHAIR: Searles, Becky Wible
1 text file (thesis) : PDF, 30 pages, color illustrations + 1 animated film (5 min.) : WMV, sound, color
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