Hi everyone! After months of college application process, I'm finally (FINALLY!) back to share the projects I worked on during this time with you. Youth is a topic that I'm always interested in , mainly because it's the "phase" I'm currently going through in life. People all have different interpretations about it, but for me it's particularly relatable with the teenage years. Fashion has a profound influence on teenagers’ expressions of self-identity, so I chose to use garment design and fashion film to explore the idea of Youth, a time of self-exploration for teenagers like me.
What makes this period of memories meaningful are the feelings involved. As a result, I used emotions, often presented in the form of “threads” in Chinese literature, as the main element of this project. Starting out from this concept, I redesigned a plain white t-shirt with colorful threads, cutouts, tulle fabrics, and dyes that visualized the development of my emotions in teenage years. As I was sewing threads onto fabric, the movement of tightening and loosening each stitch inspired my idea to record the motion of these yarns as another way to present emotional struggles. Thus, this fashion project became the foundation for a short film that resonated with today's youth.
The video was originally planned to be silent, since I thought this can emphasize the tension and “strangled” feeling within the main character. However, I changed my mind while listening to piano music composed by my friend, Yi-Ling Wu. This impressionistic melody not only made me think of specific scenes such as getting up in the morning, a person trapped in ribbons, and someone running, but also expressed bold color schemes via the transition between majors and minors. In my mind I saw a combination of different colors, which later served as a color palette for the film.
Having the music and the general image of each scene settled, I started to construct the plot. While creating the storyboard, the ideas just came to me naturally because they are a part of my daily experiences and of those around me. From the first scene - waking up - to getting dressed and putting makeup on, each step represents this teenage girl's response to society's expectation for adulthood and gender roles. Meanwhile, she gets trapped by frustration and uncertainty about the future (symbolized by blue ribbons). After an inner conflict, she finally breaks free. As she runs on her life path, the emotions she carries also change into positive ones (the red and yellow ribbons that stand for passion and motivation), which she keeps in mind at the end of the day.
I hope this short film can encourage people to deal with frustrations optimistically and to truly live for themselves.
xx, Winnie WYC