Alexander is a story of overcoming the fear of personal artistic expression. Alexander is the son of an affluent family who was found to have musical talent at a young age. Alex grows to enjoy music, but rote exercises alone begin to disillusion the promising musician. Regardless, Alexander dutifully practices piano exercises daily, bored by the lack of creative stimulation but afraid to openly admit it. After an accidental music note sparks his imagination, Alexander escapes into fantasy: a colorful visualization of the original music he creates. Within this fantasy, a warm, supportive community leads Alexander to his most significant source of inspiration: the Muse, an embodiment of his passionate creativity. As Alexander ages, reality begins to cloud his fantasy. Fearful of rejection, frustration and indecision over expressing himself in reality begin to outweigh his joy. Indecision leads to hazy inspiration, and Alexander's Muse becomes weak and colorless. The musician knows he must make a choice: commit to the narrow view of what his family believes art to be, or openly fight for his form of creativity. After seeing his own reflection in the piano, Alexander glimpses life without honest self-expression. He ultimately chooses creativity despite fear. This courageous action is met with real comfort as Alexander's artistic expression finally finds him community in his real world. The paper accompanying my film deconstructs process and influences. I first discuss the importance of Japanese animation and musical theatre to my story and art direction. I then examine how queerness inspired my character creation, and how subverting traditionally gendered traits can encourage creative freedom.
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Master of Fine Arts (M.F.A.)
College of Arts and Humanities
School of Visual Arts and Design
Emerging Media; Animation and Visual Effects Track
Length of Campus-only Access
Masters Thesis (Open Access)
Garoogian, Alyssa, "Alexander: A Dive into Identity, Inspiration, and Release of the Creative Self" (2020). Electronic Theses and Dissertations, 2020-. 48.