Whooping Crane Illustration and Animation

 

Project Overview

Whooping cranes have been a species under the threat of extinction due to human causes. This project's aim is to entice viewers to learn more about the impact of habitat loss on whooping cranes and inspire the viewer to take action to preserve this beautiful species. This was achieved through poster and animation.

Poster

Timeline

Spring 2021
2.5 weeks


Tools
Illustrator, Procreate

 

Animation

Timeline
Spring 2021
2.5 weeks


Tools
After Effects, Illustrator

Individual Projects

 

Final Illustration

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Illustration Process

Research Steps

  1. Narrow down focus to one cause of whooping crane endangerment

  2. Understand the habitat, behavior, and anatomy of whooping cranes

Full process here

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Research Sketches on Anatomy and Habitat

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Reasons for Endangerment:
 

Oil contamination: the winter migration habitat for the whooping cranes is the Texas shore, which is at risk of oil contamination from oil rigs in the Gulf coast.
 

Power lines: during migration, whooping cranes fly over vase stretches of land, and are prone to hitting power lines, which causes concussions and sometimes death.
 

Habitat loss: many wetlands are disappearing due to increased urbanization. The whooping cranes only have a small patch of land protected by wildlife services in the Texas coast that is remarkably small in comparison what was there before.
 

Hunting: whooping cranes were once shot at for sport, meat, and feathers. Now, it is illegal to hunt them, but many people unknowingly or accidentally shot them.

Thumbnail Sketches

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Sketch Process

Exploring a range of compositions and subject matters regarding the causes of endangerment for whooping cranes caused me to narrow down the story I wanted to tell. My two main ideas from this point on focused on oil spills and habitat loss or power line collisions because I could incorporate the habitat and behavior of the cranes in the illustration.  Including the actions of the whooping cranes would aid in empathizing with the creatures.

Procreate Visualizations of Illustration

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Thought Process

Because the draft on the right showcased the importance of the habitat for the survival of the species—as a source of food—the impact of explaining their decreasing habitat due to urbanization would be more effective. Also, the composition of underwater and above water environments develops visual interest.

Illustration Development on Adobe Illustrator

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Animation Process

Steps

  1. Storyboard narrative and scenes

  2. Refine animation in After Effects using Illustrator assets

Full process here

Storyboarding

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Rough Animation

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Scene Thumbnails

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Asset Creation

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