Over the past few weeks I’ve been nailing down the form that my timeline will take. After a few different ideas about how I wanted it to be laid out I came up with idea of spirals. I wanted to play with the name of the film “Looper” and created a looped timeline.
This is my sketched draft of what I hope my final project will look like. I determined that I would start in Illustrator and move to Photoshop to fix anything I couldn’t get right in the first program. I started with working on the shape of the timeline itself. So far I have gotten the top line built and the transition between the first and seconds done. I have been having a few issues with areas like Old Joe’s line back through the middle of the timeline but I have an idea of how to fix it once the whole line is constructed. I dropped what I had done into Photoshop and made a quick mock-up of what the final form will look like.
The text used in this draft aren’t the final fonts I want to use but it gives a good idea of placement. Also this is a cropped down version since half the timeline isn’t built yet.
Images from the Book Cartographies of Time: A History of the Timeline
While looking through the book I found several different styles of timelines. Some were very text heavy with a lot of information crammed into the text. Shape helped influence this information but only really supported the text that was on the page.
On the opposite side, there were many that were image heavy. Most have little to no text and rely on the images on the page to communicate the information.
Most however used both the images and text to convey the story that they were trying to tell.
It was this one that gave me the idea for the shape of my own timeline for Looper.
I was originally going to try for a circle timeline much like this one. To me it shows the idea that like a circle time goes on without a break, turn, or angle. I scratched the idea after a few sketches that didn’t turn out the way I wanted. Mostly I was running into issues about fitting the idea of time travel into this format.
I have decided to do a character timeline for the film Looper. The film is about time travel and the effects that it could have on the past, present and future. My favorite part of this film is that they never really explain their theory of time travel. In the universe time travel is possible and that’s all you need to know. This means I get to manipulate the timeline without having to figure out if it fits into their “reality.” I started the process by drafting out a couple of possible ways to map out the timeline.
In this first attempt I split the timelines up. In the film there are 3 distinct timeline that Joe, the main character, creates or experiences. I separated each of these and put the Old Joe’s (Joe from the future) impact on each one separately. I don’t think this version really represents how the film flows so I created the second version.
In this version I connected all of the timelines together and showed where Old Joe’s impact was as he moved through timelines. This is a better representation of how the film works but it might be visually confusing to people. My next step is to work out how to better visually show the same information on this timeline.
Inception: The Architecture
by: Rick Slusher
This has to be one of my favorite character maps. The artist very easily conveys a very confusing timeline with multiple realities visually by splitting up each dream into it’s own slice. The block colors in each slice show who’s dream they are currently inside and who is there. He also adds the “kicks” with the pictures next to the slices.
Pulp Fiction: Chronological sequence
By: Shahed Syed
Syed says that the image below is what inspired them to create this piece. It maps out the character progression within the film Pulp Fiction which is cut out of order. The artist reordered the film in this chart and tracked their movement throughout the film. I really like all of the small visual symbols throughout which helps tell the story while mapping out information.
World History Chart
I’d like to find a larger copy of this piece. It’s very visually interesting but the size doesn’t allow actually reading any of the information.
Timeline Map of Great Ideas
A refreshing step away from the traditional timeline. This is more visually interesting then a line with a few point mapped out on it. It also combines multiple timelines that share a common theme, Great Ideas. Visually its pretty easy to follow with each different timeline using a different color. I also like the visual idea that time isn’t a strait line but a spiral.