jessica charlesworth


, , ,

This film explores how a mottephobic* lepidopterist might use a placebo to deal with his obsession of lepidopterans and his irrational fear of dusty moths. This RCA project encouraged us to explore a way of designing that acknowledges peoples’ complicated pleasures and irrationality and to go beyond simplistic design characterisations of people as ‘users’ and ‘consumers’.

Having studied the phobia of moths I explored how someone might cope with this phobia if they were actually fascinated with butterflies and moths and an avid collector.  In the process I researched devices used to capure moths for archiving and how this design languaged might be adapted to create a placebo object for a lepidopterist.

I created a short film that explored this dilemma. As an exercise in filmmaking, a storyboard was constructed to capture each key shot and appropriate props and lighting were key ingredients in its production.

Our key adviser for this project were out tutors, filmakers and designers Noam Toran and Onkar Sing Kular, with lighting technical advice from Per Tingleff.

*To have an irrational fear of moths

The Lepidopterist seeks out the moth in his home

The Lepidopterist at home in his study

Props used during filming

Potential devices considered during development

Leave a Reply