The Legend

The Mayon Volcano gets its name from Magayon, a legendary princess who lived in the Bicol region. I was fascinated by the dramatic story of Magayon from the moment I heard it. Particularly because of its similarity with a volcano legend that I grew up with as a young child in Mexico, the legend of Popocatépetl and Iztaccíhuatl.

After considering many options we settled on something that I thought the small, young and dedicated animation team could produce with a high artistic level in spite of the limitations. I decided to keep the animated legend under 3 minutes, and go for an anime-inspired style with limited animation and painterly backgrounds.

The first challenge was to distill the convoluted legend into a much simpler 3-minute version. The second challenge was to find a narrative style that could address both the fairytale beginning of the story as well as the violent ending. I chose to tell the first half of the story in a traditional storybook voice-over style with explicit Disneyesque overtones, and to let the anime style images, dramatic music and sound effects tell the disturbing second part.

Research and the Creative Process | Language and Emotion | Tone, Style and Structure | The Role of Music | Production Notes