There was a plan, before the end of production on 'the illusionist' to keep the senior crew together to go on and make more movies. (For those unfamiliar with the animation industry, studios are usually created for one production and closed when the film is completed.)
The animation director, Paul Dutton was the driving force behind the idea and some of us even did a few drawings to illustrate some of his story ideas.
One of the projects I liked and wanted to see made was 'the fiddler's pieces', a story loosely inspired by the violinist Paganini, who was rumored to have sold his soul in exchange for his incredible abilities.
I started volunteering more and more ideas, further and further removed from the outline, so much so that at some point I had gone completely off.
One of my favorite idea, (and quite honestly the weirdest) was to make the guy duel with his violin. I know it sounds silly, but I was sure it would look good, so in order to sell the idea, I started making some tests and quickly found I needed context, a short story to set up a fight.
The context that I started writing grew and grew and it became, over the following months,the story I am now spending all my free time illustrating...