For the last four years, a group of SCAD students from Atlanta, Savannah and Hong Kong have been working on developing an animated, supernatural drama series called Kuro. The series follows the story of a demon samurai named Yohei Kuro who, along with a team of allies, must work to stop a sinister race of witches from taking over the human race, while trying to overcome the prejudice that humans have developed towards all demons.
With majors of all kinds teaming up to help work on the project, this has become a massive collaborative effort that has ultimately helped unite the SCAD community. The series has also gained quite a following, with over 16,000 likes on Facebook and lots of fan art from dedicated followers.
The Connector had a chance to sit down with some of the crew, including graduate animation student Shomari Harrington (character artist and animator), fourth-year animation student Beatriz Molina (storyboard artist), fourth-year animation student Megan Nader (producer, writer and director), and third-year sequential art student Ahmara Smith (character artist, sequential artist and 2D artist).
The Connector: Give us a quick blurb about the premise of the show.
Nader: Kuro is basically a show about race and discrimination, also with a touch of family. It deals with witches trying to take over the world and rule all of humanity, but the demons are the only ones that can stop them. However, due to the prejudice between demons and humans, they don’t feel like they really want to and it’s up to our main character to force the demons to be the good guys.
The Connector: What has been the best part of working on this show?
Nader: For me, it’s getting to see everyone’s input. It’s very collaborative. If somebody says, “Oh, I want to draw this, would it be possible for me to put this in it?” and I would usually say, “Yeah, try it, see if it works out.” And 95% of the time, it usually does and I love our team for that.
Smith: I’ve liked the challenges because I’ve never had to follow a style. Keeping it consistent is always interesting.
The Connector: What do you think has been the most challenging part of working on this project?
Nader: Trying to get it out there. For a while we were a secret group, and for a while some of us weren’t even in the secret group … about a year ago we started going on Facebook and really getting it out there. The audience has been very receptive, we’ve blown up a little bit I feel like, and we keep going.
Harrington: A challenge for me has been to learn to collaborate with people, for me that’s very new. I’ve gotten used to doing everything myself, so it’s learning to kind of hang back and finding that proper balance. I don’t want to feel like a know-it-all, but I also don’t want to seem like I’m not contributing.
The Connector: What are the next steps in the show’s development right now?
Nader: Getting picked up. It’s gotten to the point that we know our style and we know what we’re doing, so it’s just a matter of getting somebody to actually acknowledge us and pick us up. I feel like we’re doing that, but it’s basically a matter of getting it out there to a network.
The Connector: For other students who may want to get into this kind of field, what would be your biggest piece of advice for them?
Molina: Don’t undersell yourself, because no matter how much you’ve learned, you always have something to offer.
Nader: I came into this not even knowing if I wanted to be an animator or not and through this growing process, I just thought, “You know what, I don’t even want to animate, I just want to write and produce.” It’s really a matter of putting yourself out there and growing.
If you’d like to help support the show, visit their Facebook page here.