Amber Cady explores feelings, thoughts, and ideas on the self.

Through a series of generative prompts, I interviewed each participant inviting them share their experiences of fear and anxiety, starting  from the feelings in their body. I then asked them to describe the animal that best represented those feelings and sensations and from there we mined  for associated thoughts for the hidden narratives of suffering.

When I felt we were reaching the height of the anxious feelings I noted that another animal had arrived on the scene. I assured the participant that their physiology and feelings had changed upon seeing this new animal. That they were feeling transformed in some way and then chose words  that specifically  countered the previous ones they’d used. If they mentioned feeling lost I noted they had felt found, if it was panickey, I noted they felt especially calmed by the animal.

I then  asked them to describe this new animal and what happened between them to change their feelings and physical sensations.
Thus presenting us with a new narrative of transformation deriving from their  animal’s interactions.

From these interviews I crafted a "script," created costumes that myself and the participants wore to represent each of their animals, and filmed the stories of Fox, Sheep, and Pill Bug, as they wind their way through landscapes of fear of abandonment, fear of never finding one's true voice, and fear of heights. Each character struggling to uncover a something essential about their suffering until a  soothing counterpart and transformed alternative arrive on their inner scene to delightful results.

This project and resulting experimental documentay short was made possible through the generous support of Royal Nonesuch Gallery, in Oakland California, during a Royal Production Company Residency that took place at  in the fall of 2016.

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