Comics: Bethany Smyth

This was my first time using Adobe Illustrator and was very relieved the tools were similar or the same to the tools in the Adobe Photoshop program. As I started my project, I was very overwhelmed with where to start and how to execute my project. Although the program’s tools are similar to photoshop, there are many tools that are different. With experimentation and time, I got more confident and found which tools I enjoyed using most. I told myself not to get overwhelmed with the amount of tools so I educated myself in a few, more simpler tools such as the calligraphy pen and the curvature tool, and changing colors and point sizes.

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This is my Comic. It is a how- to guide directed at people who stand in disbelief at how simple elevating such a simple instant- meal can be.

My comic is a strip that shows how to elevate ramen, a typical source off nourishment found in every college student’s pantry. Being Asian, my roommates, friends, and I like making Asian cuisine because it has intense fresh aromas and intricate flavor. One particular item we eat is ramen. We know how to make the simplest of foods into something much more appreciative to the palette. Whenever we make ramen our non asian friends are always surprised we serve them ramen, since their versions don’t have pork, chicken, beef, or duck and fresh ingredients like lemongrass, cilantro, basil, and peppers. This specific way of “dressing up” ramen was made popular in Japan, and it has now spread throughout Asia. There are restaurants that are dedicated to only serving ramen! For my comic, I wanted to make a joke of how some people react to dressed up ramen. They always ask how we make it, as if it takes intense concentration to make like many other Asian recipes. Rather, it is very simple.

I think my project fits McCloud’s definition of a comic. He states that a comic is a “juxtaposed pictorial and other images in deliberate sequence.” My project contains multiple images lined in a sequence from left to right. The images show the process of elevating mainstream ramen to a more elevated meal. My comic shows action and tells a story. They are placed in this sequence for a specific reason. I wanted to make a print comic because I personally don’t like reading comics or illustrations on a screen. I look at a screen almost 40% of my day and when I read literature or look at drawings and paintings, I enjoy it better off screen. Perhaps its more refreshing and satisfying to see artwork in person. I made my images to be hand drawn so I used the calligraphy tool and drew most of the images. I thought if it were in print, the artwork would be appreciated more but looking at on screen, it looks good on screen as well. In fact, I think I can see the detail a lot better on the screen.

I wanted my comic to be more animated than realistic. I think it is more fun to read comics and see pictures that are more abstract and not as realistic.

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