Pratt BFA Communications Design Thesis

Natalie Krowitz Illustration


Character Design
Concept Art
Social Advocacy

ZOLA is an urban fantasy/sci-fi thriller about a young street medic fighting for a better world. When her closest friend accidentally becomes a dangerous monster, she has to reckon not only with her own despair, but with the fate of her city, her family, and the world as she knows it.

Speculative fiction - whether fantasy, sci-fi, or a mix of the two - tends to echo reality. We may be creating a fantastical world, but we build upon a viewpoint created in our present, on Earth, by someone with unique experiences. Most good speculative fiction has something to say about the here and now, but makes its argument in a context a little removed from that of the writer’s, allowing the audience to think about the question or issue at hand in a more neutral context.

But speculative fiction is not purely a rhetorical tool. It also aims to entertain with its wild ideas and aesthetics, sometimes exaggerating the styles of the past, or aiming to create something wholly alien. On a metatextual level, I want to create a story that challenges traditional fantasy ideas about magic, its sources and its morality. On a textual level, I want to create a story that comments on the current state of America and the brutality and control the state enacts on its citizens.

On a personal level, I want to write a love story about found family, kindness, and persistence in the face of chaos.