Design Elements and Principles: Dane Graves

Scott McCloud uses multiple Elements and Principles of design, as described by John Lovett, to make his work stand out on the page. One Element he uses to make his work effective are Lines and Directions. Specifically looking at page 36, the center right larger panel uses horizontal lines coming from around the boy to give the impression of a strong light coming from off the television. Horizontal lines suggest stability and tranquility. The strong light coming off a CRT screen is perfectly depicted in this panel by these horizontal lines, and the tranquil almost blank look on the boys face supports this.

understanding comics page

Page 36-37 From Understanding Comics by Scott McCloud

Repetition is a principle of design that also stands out in McCloud’s layout on these pages. Particularly on page 37 there are 8 panels that all are exactly the same size in a row where the character and text are the differences in variation between every panel. When repetition has small variation in the work, in this case the differences in stance of McCloud’s character in the center, it draws the user in subconsciously to focus on the panels helping deliver meaning and the reader to remember the text. Another principle used correctly by McCloud is Balance. Both of these pages use many panels of the same size with an image directly in the center to help the reader focus on exactly what McCloud wants the reader to focus on in each panel. Even the larger panels keep attention drawn to the center of the panels by keeping characters the same size divided equally in the panels. McClouds text always keeps to the top, and occasionally the bottom, so the reader is always drawn to the same places to look at the art and the text in every panel. Each page also keeps the exact same amount of panels without the same layout on each page, 9 panels on each. Nearly exactly the same amount of space is utilized on each page so even when opened like this the user isn’t distracted by the other page until he gets to it. This balance of his panels is essential in keeping the reader focused and moving through his comic properly.

This entry was posted in Fall 2019 Archive (201 Blog), Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s