Photo: Shadow Girl Soup

We’ve been busy working on Shadow Girl – Origins, the new phase of storytelling as part of artist, Chrissy Jones’ super hero project. 

Artist and illustrator Lizzie Finlay has been working with Chrissy to create a set of comic books style illustrations telling the story of Shadow Girl. 

Those of you who experienced Shadow Girl – The City Streets as part of Emergency (August 2018) will remember receiving this amazing comic book, which doubled as a poster… that’s the work of these two!

Starting a story

On Tuesday 18th Lizzie came to Gorse Hill and led a creative workshop to expand on the story. This began with creating a Story Soup – a method Lizzie utilises to begin every project, and one that anyone can use to help build their story. 

It starts by putting all the elements of your story into one place. Draw them down in a sort of mind map. We imagined elements of the story as different objects. For example, Chrissy and the team want the story to have lots of suspense and an explosion of drama so, we drew a shaking can of fizzy pop! We know it’s going to erupt, it just a matter of when! 

Shadow Girl Soup

Creating problems

The next step, and the secret of the story, is to give our character a problem. It feels mean and horrible to do this to our characters, but that’s how we grow to understand and love them. 

We also need to understand what makes a story a good story. To help us understand if a story is ‘hot or not’, Lizzie gave everyone in the company 2 marvellous illustrations. One of hot fire, the other a frosty snowman.

Hot or Not?

Chrissy began to read an example story to the company. Throughout the story members waved each illustration to decide which parts were exciting. We were able to get a sense how the language we use can create suspense.

Finally, Lizzie led the company on a journey through the life of Sabrina and her alter ego, Shadow Girl… How was Shadow Girl created? What problems do the characters have to face? Will they succeed and what will we learn? 

Together the company mapped out a couple of different ideas for the story, but of course we couldn’t possibly reveal these to you now. Instead we encourage you to follow our social channels and keep reading our newsletter to find out when and where you’ll get to experience Shadow Girl – Origins.