UPDATE June 30: The dream had already become reality but Wylah: The Last Koorie Warrior received a large donation to ensure the illustrated chapter book would be created.
The Fletcher Jones Family Foundation donated $5,000 towards the project which will allow Warrnambool creators Richard Pritchard and Jordan Gould to bring their concept to life.
Executive office Annabel Cussen was thrilled to announce the foundation's support.
"The interest and support demonstrated by the local community and further afield shows just how important it is that our local stories are shared," she said. "The Fletcher Jones Family Foundations are pleased to be able to support the campaign, as we see great opportunities for this project and its team."
There are 11 days left to donate to the project through: kickstarter.com/projects/wylah/wylah/
UPDATE June 15: Wylah: The Last Koorie Warrior illustrated chapter book will be created as over $10,000 has been raised in just over two days.
Jordan Gould and Richard Pritchard are over the moon with the result after they initially set out to raise $9,900 in 30 days.
"This is very exciting and means Wylah is going to be an amazing book that will make a difference in the world," the pair said in a statement.
"We have backers from all over the world and we still have 27 days to go.
"People can still back the project until the last day and beyond through directly contacting us."
If donations continue to roll in, Wylah could be further transformed into an array of different mediums.
"We have prepared for this and if we reach the last stretch goal we will be going into production of an animated pitch for a TV Series, Film or Video Game," the creators said.
"This aligns with our goal to open more conversations and understanding of Indigenous culture, especially with the younger generation.
"We have reached this together and it is a clear statement of generosity and passion you all have."
Earlier, June 12: A Kickstarter campaign has launched to bring the first Gunditjmara warrior to life.
Wylah: The Last Koorie Warrior is the illustrated chapter book concept of Jordan Gould, a proud Peek Whurrong man and Richard Pritchard, a visual effects artist who has worked on blockbuster films such as Mad Max: Fury Road, The Great Gatsby and Happy Feet.
The duo want their story to promote cultural inclusion across the nation.
"I hope this can bring Indigenous stories into the eyes and minds of younger people and help them understand our culture," Mr Gould said.
"We plan to integrate a bunch of Gunditjmara words into the story with the creatures speaking the native language."
Mr Pritchard said the heroine qualities of Wylah were important to showcase for audiences and he believed she would become a leader for young people.
"Back in the day I believe there would have been many Indigenous young girls like Wylah who were strong and would fight for their families. Why don't we see this image now?" he said.
"We want Wylah to be a beacon of light that shines the message of hope.
It's about working together, creating acceptance, education and the celebration of Indigenous culture.Richard Pritchard
Wylah is a coming of age story about a Peek Whurrong girl from the Gunditjmara nation who, upon discovering her family has been taken by the invading Red Rock Dragon Empire, must go on a journey to reunite the guardians and save her people.
The pair first met when Mr Pritchard taught Mr Gould in his year 11 and 12 VETIS digital media and technology studies at South West TAFE.
Through the Kickstarter campaign, they hope to raise almost $10,000 in 30 days to create a young adult fiction book and make plans for future Wylah pursuits.
"We want to cross-pollinate the story and art production to lead directly into making a television series," Mr Pritchard said.
"I believe that Australian Indigenous culture has so much to teach us.
"We want to blend Indigenous storytelling with western writing structures to engage the wider mainstream audience.
"The aim is for people to talk to their local Indigenous leaders and start the conversation about the culture."
They have worked tirelessly to create the Wylah concept and have had countless meetings over Zoom within the coronavirus pandemic to continue their momentum.
The project has already gained support with illustrator Jeremy Ley coming on board to mentor the process and Warrnambool artist Gareth Coliton will be illustrating the book.
Wylah embodies the kindness of a caring, determined soul, yet when faced with a deadly threat she is as equally full of a protective spirit.Jordan Gould
"The story is part fantasy, part alternate history.
"We are working with local Elders and Indigenous youth to build a support network around the project."
To back the Kickstarter campaign head to kickstarter.com/projects/wylah/wylah
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