Welcome to my Narrative Website, edition number 2! At the start of this unit we were instructed to write a story, there were very few restrictions, like most things we do in freestyle, we could write whatever we wanted, horror, fiction, mystery, as long as there was a plot. Like I’ve mentioned on a lot of my other websites, one of the hardest things for me is just to get myself rolling, taking that first step, which for this, was of course coming up with my story. Last time we had a Narrative Unit I really didn’t put myself out there, I made just another love story, of course I put a little spin on it, but the backbone of the story was nothing special. And as the weeks went by I only got more and more bored of my idea, so I knew that this unit I didn’t want to be spending my whole time slowing hating my story more and more. So I knew I’d have to step out of my comfort zone, luckily for me I had been watching a lot of scary movies lately. So for my story I wanted to keep the reader on their feet, and keep myself on my feet. As I mentioned, in English, our main goal was writing the actual story, in design we then made a book cover for our story, and lastly in Web, as you have noticed, we made both a website and a book trailer. On this website you’ll see all of my work throughout this unit come together.



Vanished By Nicolas Faurot

November 28, 1996.

A Missing Child Alert has been issued for a 9-year-old boy who was last seen in Greenwood Ohio. According the the Department of Law Enforcement, Timothy Walker was last seen in the area of the 400 block of Fallen Leaf Lane. He was wearing an orange and blue striped shirt and camouflage shorts. He is approximately 4 feet tall, 65 pounds, and has brown hair, green eyes.

Every year it was someone new, there was no lead as to where they went or what was causing them to disappear. It was always a child, and it always marked the end of fall. Ever since the people of Greenwood could remember, every year a child would vanish, and one thing would always remain the same: the trail always led to a pile of leaves. No bodies were ever found, no blood, no footprints, not even cry for help, they just vanished.

During this unit we were given complete control, our only instruction, to write a story, whether that be a fictional tail with princesses and dragons, or an engaging action thriller with guns and sirens. I decided to write a mystery-horror story. The story "vanished" is about a boy who lives an isolated life in an already isolated town, Greenwood. Followed by nightmares of his past and the loss of his best friend and mother, he has no where left to go, even his Dad doesn't seem to want him anymore.

When I first started this unit, I had no clue what to write about, last year during our narrative unit I wrote a very stereotypical love novel with a very small twist to it, all in all, it was nothing impressive to read or work on. This year I new I wanted to write something that would not only keep my audience engaged, but myself as well. Being that I have been watching plenty of horror movies lately, creating the "chills" came easy as I used techniques and details from screenings. The plot line itsself took quite some time to formulate however, the story I had initially planned to write would have been nearly twice as long, and personally I believe you can only drag a horror story out for so long before you loose the readers attention, so instead I decided to take it a different route after writing the first few pages. Whenever I am creating any type of "art" I always have a clear image in my head, usually an image of something I've already seen before with slight alterations, but for me it's almost like a "guide" for my brain to follow. Originally the house in my novel was based off of the house from American Horror story in season 1, just to give you an idea of what I mean by having a mental image in my head, however after changing my idea I ended up taking it out completely. The town was supposed to be very similiar to the town in "Children of the Corn", an old horror movie and book, written by Stephen King, the town in his novel was very barren and dull, abandonned shops lined the streets filled with broken glass and empty bottles, ultimately the town had a very eerie vibe. I am the type of person who likes to take things and make them better, people will ask me what else they should add to there project and I'll know what to say as ideas flow through my head, but when it's just me and a white page, getting myself going is no where near as easy.


Greenwood was located in the outskirts of Ohio, isolated from the rest of civilization they truly were off the grid. Everyone had a role in the town and they all relied on one another in order to prosper. The town was like any other, it had stores, houses and of course a school, but this town held a dark secret. Every year for as long as they could remember a child would vanish, no one ever knew why and nor did they question it. But they all knew it would happen, and 5 years ago that child was Alex Hail’s best friend. After the death of his mother his father seemed to disappear from his life, and after his friend vanished he truly was alone. Alex was the type of kid who never looked very far into the future, he’d make rude remarks at his teachers and wasn’t afraid to pick on the bigger kids, and they certainly were not afraid of him. It wasn’t uncommon for Alex to put himself into a dangerous situation, but somehow he always managed to talk his way out of it. One day at school Alex did just that, taunting Jonathan, a boy twice his size. But unfortunately for him, he wouldn’t be able to talk himself out of it. He runs down to the Fallen leaf lane, the last place his friend Timothy was found. Hiding in a pile of leaves he begins to hear the laughter of children and realizes it’s not Jonathan’s. After a flashback reminds him of when Timothy disappeared it becomes deja-vu. He begins to hear the sounds of laughter as the wind rages around him, but instead of running over to the pile of leaves that Timothy had been hiding in on that fateful day, he looks down to realize he’s the one in the pile of the leaves. He is not afraid, and he does not run, but instead, vanishes.

In my cover I wanted the reader to immediately get a sense of mystery. The main character, Alex, has alienated himself from the rest of society, including his peers and family, so in the cover I wanted to create a sense of isolation. The majority of the story takes place on an eerie street lined by trees, so for my cover I wanted to highlight the trees. I was initially going to have silhouettes of children playing, but the title of the book is “vanished”, so instead I decided to make the children “vanish”. As for the background, I didn’t want to use some pastel color, I wanted texture but I needed to keep the eerie tone. I felt the best way to do so was with a paper background, after applying this I decided to add some effects to the trees and title to make them look more like ink on the page.



A man stands on the edge of a mountain as he stares off into the distance, in one hand he holds a pencil, inhaling the fumes as he takes a hit, as his other hand hangs by his side. The man reflects upon his dull life, wishing for more, for an outlet to express himself and show where his imagination can take him. He seeks an empty canvas.

Before taking photos, I sketched out what I wanted to create, I knew I wanted my piece to utilize morphing. For this I decided what better object to morph to portray a canvas than paper. I took out a few sheets of paper from my backpack and crumpled them and then unfolded it to give the paper texture. The paper in my final piece was shot using HDR photography. After taking photos of the paper I needed my background, the only real criteria I had here was that it needed to have hills and mountains, and look beautiful of course. After finding the spot to shoot I set up my tripod and experimented with several different settings on my camera, I ended up angling my camera so you could slightly see the trail on the side. I then took some photos of my friend to later piece in. After gathering my photos I realized I needed something else to piece it all together and make it look almost “natural”. To do this I decided to take a pencil and burn one end, this would then be placed into the hands of my friend to give off the impression he was “smoking” the pencil like a cigarette. I shot the pencil in HDR to maximize the texture since I knew it would be small but have to stand out. In photoshop I cut out both my friend and the pencil and placed them on the background shot. Using the eraser tool I carefully eliminated some of the hills, I was initially going to remove them all but this ended up giving it a very 1 dimensional effect. After erasing some of the hills I then too placed the photos of the crumpled paper to fill in the void space, making the hills appear to be made of paper. Using filters to enhance saturation and exposure I was able to make the background much more vibrant like a painting, the filters were also used to make the texture on the paper pop out much more.



On top of making a website to display all of our content throughout this unit in Web Audio, we also were able to create a book trailer. To make the book trailer we used a program called after effects, this is how we did the animating. In after effects we have the ability to manipulate objects, change their size-position-texture, pretty much anything you want to do to an object you can do, with enough patience of course. While making my trailer I teamed up with Zippy, we decided we would make a trailer for my story idea instead of hers. Zippy ended up doing most of the work in illustrator, that being all of the images you see in the trailer and backgrounds, we created polaroids of the kids and then placed them onto a case folder, which was also made in illustrator. After we had all the elements in illustrator, we imported them into after effects where I did most of the animating. We decided to avoid using too many of the present options and instead do everything on our own, this meant instead of using a preset text fade in effect, I took the opacity of the text and slowly increased it as time went by to give it a nearly identical effect. With the help of a few youtube videos and a lot of pausing, I was able to apply an effect to the text on the case folder that made it appear to bleed into the page like ink, the same effect was used on the pictures of the kids. After creating the animation and determining how long it would be, we decided to make our own music. Using the studio we recorded zippy playing the piano and then also singing, using our audio files we placed them into a program called Pro Tools and created our song. We browsed the present librabry of sound effects and added in things such as cchimes and whispers to create a more eerie piece. Lastly we imported in our music and applied a few filters and effects, including drop shadows to make our elements pop.