The Red Tree by Shaun Tan Techniques

Name:   The Red Tree     Published:   Shaun Tan   Text type:   Picture Book   Year:   2001

‘The Red Tree’ illustrated and written by Shaun Tan is a picture book which is based on a variety of images and statements inspired by the experience of depression. The main Character is a lonely red-headed girl, who remains un named through the book, experiencing a lack of belonging to herself and connection to the world, causing to have the effect of alienation upon herself. Tan uses many techniques in conveying this deep meaningful piece towards the audience, helping to engage the viewer to become aware of those who don’t have a safe place in the world in which we live in today.

A lack of belonging ones self can create negative perceptions of the world.
- Use of symbolism created through dramatic images, depicting the girl’s emotions.
- Reputation of a red autumn leaf, symbolising the little hope she has in the world, camouflaged in each picture painting.
- Title page best describes her emotional inner self, as we are viewed with the red-headed girl slouching carelessly over a paper hat, floating in the middle of the water.
- The paper hat floating in water, with words written all over it, to express how she truly feels, floating towards an orange leaf.
- The use of juxtaposition used through black leaves surrounding the hat boat, contrasted towards the lonely red leaf, showing that the girl sees more negative than positives in the world, over ruling the hope which she has of feeling belonged.
- First page of the story we are shown with the red-headed girl sitting up in bed, surrounded with a few black leaves symbolising the negativity which she has that the day started.
- Also been expressed through the use of tone “sometimes the day begins with nothing to look forward to”.
-   shown through the image that the girl forces isolation within herself, due to the door wide shut, and the blinds on the window closed, trying to create a...