Institute of Art Design + Technology
Dún Laoghaire

Clarabelle Murphy 

BA [Hons] 3D Design Modelmaking + Digital Art

Storytelling has always been at the forefront of my craft. This course has allowed me to focus on aspects such as character design, puppetry, miniatures and world building. For me, prop making is such a fulfilling way to tell stories, and this course has allowed me to grow as an artist and acquire a skill set to guide me into a professional setting. My final project granted me the freedom to forge a story that would highlight my strengths as a model maker and showcase my aspirations for a career in film and television.

Project Description

Dublin, 1899, and witchcraft is rampant across the country. Dorcas 'Darkey' Kelly is the head madam at The Maiden Tower on Copper Alley. This however is just a façade for a secret society of witches who work across Ireland helping women escape death who have been wrongly or rightly accused of witchcraft. The Maiden Tower is simply one of the hundreds of safe houses the witches have established. They travel through underground tunnels in Ireland that are abandoned and lay empty until the witches discover it is their best way of transport around the country and to remain unnoticed. When Dorcas is arrested for accusations of witchcraft and murder, her spell book is taken into police custody, and she is sentenced to death in St. Stephen’s Green. The witches gain access to the tunnel underneath where Dorcas is to be burned at the stake and have planned to escape her through the fountain of the park. The water that fills the fountains in parks around Dublin holds great powers and that is how Dorcas’ spell book is opened; through the water she keeps in her pendant.

The Dead or Absent Mother in Children’s Fairy Tales and Fantasies and the Narrative Avoidance of Nuanced Maternal Relationships with Children.

Fairy tales and children’s stories are seriously lacking in diverse representations of motherhood. Whether it be single mothers, migrant mothers, LGBTQ+ mothers or even mothers who aren’t dead, my thesis will highlight the lack of nuanced portrayals of motherhood, in particular in cases where storytellers provide dead and missing mothers and replace them with evil step-mothers, wicked witches and eventually single fathers. The image of the mother is time and time again sacrificed for the sake of the protagonist’s journey. My thesis explores the origins of this trope within fairy tales, the psychological effects it brings to the narrative for protagonists and why corporations such as Disney and Pixar struggle to produce complex mother-daughter relationships and diversify away from repressive heteronormative storylines which begin with the dead mother.