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  • Writer's pictureR Cipolletta

e6: The Detective (It_1)

Body of Work 29.09.20

Character Profile

While I was working on some of my other reflective journal entries, I started having some ideas for the detective character I mentioned in my last entry (e5), the tutorial with Nigel. Obviously, I set about immediately noting down these little design decisions, thinking I'd publish them later once they were complete and I had started working on the story beats for that particular character.

It was only later that it occurred to me that it might be better to publish these in unfinished, iterative segments to illustrate the evolution of my thought process on the subject. To that effect, below are the aforementioned notes on my initial ideas for the protagonist.

Unlike the other stories I will be working on, this will be heavily character-centred, with the elements of the story being informed by the personal struggles embedded in the character design, as opposed to the other way around. My objectives are outlined in italics at the top, primarily focussed on avoiding popular tropes in favour of innovation. In service of this goal, I have chosen a female character in their mid-40s (an age and gender that do not often pair up in mainstream investigative fiction) and have made her exceedingly broad and tall, BUT specifically avoiding lenience toward the masculine stereotype. Instead, she has a mix between feminine and androgynous traits - with a personality entirely fixated on functionality and practicality rather than personal preference. She has a task (whether its personal or work-assigned) and that's all she is about.

In future journal entries I will be re-posting this list with my adjustments, references, and improvements until I have the completed work available for this concept. For now, this is the best way I can think of showing the development of the same concept from start to finish.

So far this is my favourite concept and seems to have most potential for addressing all of the learning outcomes.



Design Priorities: defies stereotypes, sensible, tired, quiet, responsible...

  • Tall I'm thinking.

  • Recluse, does her own hunting (relation to the deer/elk) - makes the mysterious happenings somewhat personal

  • Large hands, holds the revolver awkwardly - better suited for big hunting gun (can I get that in real life? or should I go for a giant revolver?)

  • Low ponytail, over one shoulder - plaited? Board-straight hair with greying roots, and tangled bits

  • Yellowed fingernails (and teeth ??) with large fingernail beds but not long nails so the hands appear more feminine without the impracticality - look at Camilla's hands

  • Missing finger? Tip of a finger - she sets traps

  • Small lips or a bit of a pout

  • Deep eyebags

  • Fine brows but with large muscles underneath - spends a lot of time with eyebrows furrowed = thicker muscles there

  • Square jaw: tight jaw muscles, bigger on one side (?) from chewing hard meats (how is she cooking them if they're that hard?)

  • Chops her own wood - big bones - large wrists

  • Mo's hands with one squared off thumb and one smooth one [PIC]

  • Stubborn, alone but does not object to company - more like a resting bitch face. Familial connections that are dear to her? A niece who puts a plaster over her missing finger - she keeps it until it fades

  • Sibling could be the archetype of a lumberjack male to show distinction between stereotypes and the character I’m going for

    • SCENE: un-snares a rabbit and the plaster comes loose, hanging on the finger by one side. She peels it off, revealing(ish) the missing finger and puts it in her pocket

    • Side ponytail looks odd when its down the back - use that

    • Dog? Opportunity to stray from stereotypes again — Jack Russells and beagles - eat the foxes? Why does she get dogs? To solve a problem!

    • What if she’s not the detective? Just someone invested in protecting the forest. E.g gets borzoi to hunt wolves (?) — need a profile on the woods to understand the problem *** What if someone else is the detective? Gives them the equipment? Maybe she is the case consultant?? Why does it need to be clarified? Just have her have detective equipment without explanation - avoid handing the explanations to the viewer and preserve the mystery

- R Cipolletta



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