Although the use of Child Soldiers in Africa are thought to be most critical, children are enlisted from as young as 8 years of age across Asia, Europe, Latin America and the Middle East.
In 2008 the idea of an awareness campaign was considered focusing on the horrific topic of Child Soldiers. The idea was to create a series of striking images which could potentially be used either within an advert or video campaign or simply a series of prints. Whilst the initial reaction was to have a Live-Action focus, it was considered appropriate to use drawing and animation as a medium to connect with the subject material. Cartoons and Animation on a fundamental level are stereotypically associated with children and so it seemed right to use this is some way.
The first step was to develop a character for the audience to connect with. A great deal of time was spent designing various characters, using different styles and techniques. The decision fell upon a very rough look, uncertain lines and a lack of discipline with colouring which would theoretically contribute to the overall effects conjured by the imagery. The little girl is constructed using simplistic shapes and bold colours meaning she is easily identifiable and conveys a sense of innocence.
As shown in the short test clip below, the animation fluctuates and boils which creates a nice style about it. The scene is striking due to the fact that the little girl is clearly curled up in a defensive position grasping a machine gun.
The image below is a final composition created as a promotional piece for the project. Given the slightly disjointed feel, the scene feels uneasy and unsettling due to the mixed media approach.