Print Versus Digital: Brianna Esqueda

Comic have seamlessly combined two great mediums, visual art and storytelling. When done well the two work together creating a uniquely different experience. One thing that I took from reading Scott McCloud’s Understanding Comics was the use of space, and how it drives the reader in the story. The concept of the gutter is something exclusive to comics. It is the space between the panels. It also applies to the brake caused by the binding of a book, and the time and distance created by a page break or turn. Unlike how film uses music to direct the viewers emotions, the gutter allows the reader to speculate and forces them to make connections between panels.

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Image of Eroyn Franklin’s illustrations from Deluge.

Much of what we see is consume digitally. While viewing a comic on a screen can sometimes maintain the pacing that bouncing your eyes from panel to panel and turning the page creates, scrolling on a screen often takes away much of the effort put on the reader by the author. When I read Understanding Comics I went into the text knowing that it was going to read like a manual. I do not think that it is necessarily a good piece to draw from just because it is so aware of what it is. But when I read some of Eroyn Franklin’s comics online I began to understand that, when used correctly, a digital comic can bring its on facets to a piece. Deluge did it well, the comic is told slide by slide with only two panels. Like I said earlier it does something different with the gutter. By showing you two images at once, there is no need to infer what is happening in between.

In my example you can see that nothing is really changing from one panel to the next. And I think that this is a good indication of how viewing a comic on a screen instead holding the hard text changes the way the medium is understood by the reader.

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