During the month of October, I read To Dance: A Ballerina’s Graphic Novel, written by Siena Cherson and Illustrated by Mark Siegel. The main character of the book was a girl named Siena. Throughout the story, her dance journey and life are explained in depth. Personally, I loved this book. It took me back to my childhood dance years for the first time in a while. The iconography on each page is very playful and descriptive. Some of the panels show the characters with simpler faces, for example, the eyes are dots and the mouth is a line. Others go into more detail in the eyes which conveys emotion very effectively. A black stroke consistently outlines each character and object, which creates a cartoon and childlike atmosphere. The colors used are also bright, almost a more pastel theme, and there is a lot of variety! Overall, I think Mark Siegel chose to illustrate with a lot of action to action graphics so that readers could feel like they were dancing as they read. Scott McCloud touches on this in chapter three of Understanding Comics.
While reading the different comics in a digital format, I was most intrigued by Eroyn Franklin’s use of background themes that tied multiple stories together. Since scrolling on a website has a way of breaking up visual content that viewers see in one place at the same time, I think implementing a background to back up each comic helped form closure in a way I hadn’t thought about as much in print format. The screenshot on the left is an example of how two small stories came together in an obvious way while sharing a simple-yet descriptive background.