Institute of Art Design + Technology
Dún Laoghaire
On Show 2020
Niamh Byrne

Song of the sea’ is a 2014 animated fantasy film by Cartoon Saloon and directed by Tomm Moore. It follows the story of 10 year old Ben, and his younger sister Saoirse, who, after loosing their mother, go on an adventure through the faery world to find Saoirse’s selkie coat so she can sing the song of the sea, and return the sidhe to tir na nog.
I studied this film with the intention of placing it in a live action setting, from the point of view of 10 year old Ben. I wanted to capture the innocence, and childlike wonder of the film, and the magic in the everyday.
For my garment, I focused on the mother, (Bronach’s) costume, who turns from a seal to a woman. I wanted the design, shape and silhouette of the cloak to heavily hint at the shape of a seal, and the fabrics and textiles to be influenced by the seals skin, the Irish ocean, and Irish mythology.

Brecht’s The threepenny Opera, was set in the 1830’s, and I kept it in that time period for my take on the piece, but adapted it for film. I wanted to play with stock characterisation, movement and intrigue throughout my version of the play.
For my garment, I focused the the character of Ginny Jenny. I wanted to create a piece that has lots of movement and freedom. I drew inspiration from sultry paintings from the time, looking at artists such as George Hayter. I put a lot of emphasise on the colours, and fall of the skirt so different colours and textures could be glimpsed at different points when Jenny is dancing.