Process & Inspiration

“Lola” is the Filipino word for grandmother. For most of my life, that’s the only name I knew her by. My Lola, Fe Laygo, was many things. She was a first-generation college graduate, a magna cum laude, a CPA, a professor, a business owner, a mother, a grandmother, an immigrant, and a survivor. Her 96 years were full of accomplishments and love. This project focuses on being a reflection of her loving actions and the way we, her family, knew her.

The process for work began with researching Lola’s history. Some background on her life came from the stories she told us, and other moments were retold by her children. These stories were key to shaping the narrative and storyboard of the project. Historical references to Batangas in the early 1920s through the 1940s were key to picturing her early life, the house she grew up in, and where she worked.

The color pallet also became a way to bring her story full circle. The sunrise and sunset colors were darkest at the beginning and end of her life, while the middle is the brightest and warmest.

Each scene of the story was then illustrated in Procreate, and the narrative was further refined and recorded by her granddaughter, Kimberly Stuart.

Every scene was animated by hand intentionally to add warmth and to deepen the personal connection to the project. These scenes were finally brought together and sound designed in AfterEffects.

Although she passed away only months before the completion of the project, her story lives on here in this project and by her six children, her nineteen grandchildren, and one great-grandchild.