Growing up LGBT+

Made by Toya Rosuello

I want to explore the lack of LGBT+ main characters in media marketed towards children.

Created: September 7th, 2016



Though identifying as LGBT+ is becoming more and more acceptable, the idea that it's a subject that is somehow inappropriate for young children remains prevalent. Heterosexuality is illustrated across the spectrum of romance, ranging from highly sexual to innocent puppy love but other sexualities are rarely associated with the latter. My intention is to illustrate LGBT+ romances in a way that steers away from the hypersexual image that Hollywood has given us. 



I have borrowed images from the Disney movie "Princess and the Frog". It's isn't a movie from my childhood as I was already in middle school when it came out but the iconic Disney style was part of my childhood. I have cut the images together and and added subtitles to remake the original plot to something that focuses on Tiana's romantic relationship with her best friend Charlotte La Bouff. I decided on this movie because it already a young, non-related female model I could manipulate and work with.  



I used Photoshop to cut and paste the screenshots to make them fit this pseudo-comic format. Mostly I used the rectangular marquee and magnetic lasso tool for selecting what I needed from each shot. Occasionally, I would have to use the blur tool or change the blend modes of the layers. This was to cover up parts of images when cutting them would make them too small. I also used the text tool and the stroke and color overlay effects on the text. 



What I ended up creating is something like a storyboard, taking important moments from each scene in order to convey the story. At times, I had to look up videos on YouTube and take my own screencaps rather than google searching for them. Not many of the scenes required detailed editing, only the text to give each screencap context. This was much simpler than my original storybook idea but still took a good amount of time.



Reading over it, the story feels a bit rushed. I wanted the screencaps to feel like individual moments but it feels like a rushed telling of a story. Technically, I'm mostly pleased with how it turned out. Its clean and consistent in format. The times when I had to really go in and fix details in the screenshots are cleaner than I expected them to be and at a glance you really couldn't tell that I messed with some of them. With some its more obvious. I feel like it conveys an LGBT+ romance without making the fact that they are the same sex a bigger deal than the romance itself. 


Personal Reflection

I underestimated how much effort it would take to make something of someone else's convincing. The amount of time and skill I put into this project feels like the same amount of time and skill I would put into an original work. I feel like the fact that most of this isn't originally mine doesn't detract from how much of myself I put into it. I have more respect for artistic appropriation.

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62-150 Intro to Media Synthesis and Analysis

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New creative industries are empowering new modes of collaborative consumption, creation and reuse of media. This often relies on successful collaborations between cross-trained artists, designers a...more


I want to explore the lack of LGBT+ main characters in media marketed towards children.