3: Lines Talking Community Drawings In Process

Gender role play photos: DRCongo

The third set of visuals that I chose to use in my creative translations are of two role plays – one by women and one by men – from a GALS gender training for Muungano Fair Trade coffee cooperative from DRC. The workshop iself was held in Rwanda because there was too much bombing in the area the farmers came from. Also to link them with women and men in Rwanda who were doing the same methodology.

The role plays were to look at differences and similarities between women and men in how they perceived women and men’s roles in coffee production and benefits from coffee. Participants were divided into one men’s group and one women’s group and given props so that women could play men and men could play women – adding a lot of laughter to the proceedings. I include the full photo series as these might provide series to animate through cropping.

NOTE: This was the community series I looked at last and have not yet had time to do a detailed analysis of the forms of visual body language employed by women and men on gender, corruption and status differences. This is a very rich source of learning for me for drawing and animation and this series will be my first priority in Assignment 4.

Women’s role play photos


  1. Wives and daughters in the family are working in the fields while the man sits back
  2. The women carry the coffee to market. The man accompanies them and keeps the money.
  3. The man persuades them to go home, promising to come soon. The women go back.
  4. The man goes to the bar and his girlfriend.
  5. His girlfriend persuades him to buy her not only drinks, but also fancy clothes in the market.
  6. The daughter goes to the market to find the father and see him with the girlfriend. Then goes back to tell her mother.
  7. The women then all go and attack – not the husband – but the girlfriend (a point of much discussion).

Men’s role play series

Photographs of a men’s role play in a Fair Trade Cooperative! Tupa Tupa means ‘drink, drink’ – the man’s nickname.

  • women do all the work on coffee
  • men take all the money to gamble, drink and buy presents for his ‘girlfriend’ in town
  • the man gets put in jail because of a fight
  • the lawyer and police chief work together to extort bribes from the family to secure his release
  • the family is left without money
  • the only winners from the whole coffee production are the corrupt officials
  • ….till they use the GALS participatory visioning methodology

Creative translation ideas

‘Tupa Tupa’ or what happened to the coffee money?

‘Tupa Tupa’ means drinking/drunkard. The idea is to combine the two role play stories into one. And experimenting with the sequencing of the storyline – as in Matt Madden’s 99 Ways to Tell a Story. This would be done combining physical drawing and painting on photos and/or rotoscoping over the drawings and/or photos, cropping them to add drama. Possibly I might do some cut-out and collage in the style of Sarah Fanelli. Certainly I want to retain the colours and expressions. Good sequencing and framing, focusing on the very expressive faces, should make it possible to tell the story without text or words. I would have to think about sound – possibly one of the GALS Swahili songs and/or sound effects.