Similarly to other religions, Buddhism makes use of stories and parables to convey messages. One, for example, is the story of the Dragon King’s Daughter. She is introduced in chapter twelve of the Lotus Sutra as a half human half dragon eight-year-old; according to the story, she dwells in the depths of the ocean. Teachings previous to the Lotus Sutra believed that women weren't eligible to attain enlightenment and instead, were encouraged to pray and hope to be reborn as men in future existences. Because of her natural features of being female, half reptile, and half human, she’s unqualified to possess enlightenment. She refuses this idea and her sincere wish to do so becomes the main cause of her attaining enlightenment.
The Dragon King's Daughter tale is the inspiration of two final pieces included in the portfolio, Dragon Lady and Mafalda's Sick Sad World. From Image Making, Dragon Lady is my personal interpretation of the original character as a grown woman. Adapted from Argentinian cartoonist, Quino, Mafalda's Sick Sad World is a short animation featuring a seven-year-old girl with a critical perspective on current sociopolitical events. Although fully human, Quino's creation of a young girl to voice concerns and challenge social norms embodies the spirit of the Dragon King's Daughter. In my animation, Mafalda's eloquence is reconstructed into a more sinister look to fit the tone.