For my Shakespearean animal I chose a cat. Cats were (and continue to be) common household pets, and Shakespeare referenced to them frequently in his writings.
I began to explore the cats vast history, from the Ancient Egyptians, Persians, Indians and Chinese, to the Ancient Romans and Greeks, during the 15th century Age of Discovery when they were brought to Europe, their association with evil during the Middle Age, and to their affection from Queen Victoria in the Victorian Ages.
I also explored their history within mythology, from Greek and Roman and Norse, and within religion. I eventually found myself exploring the superstition of cats being a form that witches take on (an example of this is in Macbeth). I explored and researched disguises, metamorphosing and transforming.
I explored different ways of working including collage, lino printing, woodwork, paint and ink.
Photos from my research sketchbook: