For my final comic I thought about individuality and what makes us individuals. Scott McCloud thought of individuality in the way that “no other human being can ever know what it’s like to be you from the inside,” (McCloud, 194). As individuals we each have a different set of ideals that set us apart from one another. I thought of those ideals as dreams and figured that no other person can know or understand another individuals’ dreams like they can. I took the dream idea in a more physical manner, and thought it would be interesting to physically portray some common dreams or ideas that people have, that I have also had.
The ideas that I had for this assignment are portrayed in comic form, made by Adobe Illustrator. In this comic I have created a short story or portrayal of dreaming, but more in a literal sense rather than figuratively. The comic shows a person sleeping at night with a large thought bubble meant to represent his dream. In his dream, a dream wizard appears and asks him what he would like to dream about this time and below is a set of options. I structured the dream into three different sections or options. The structure differs from the traditional paneled comic because it has more organic shapes. In the set of options are common things people dream about that also represent a deeper meaning that is different for each individual. The first option is a “Save the World” narrative that is represented through a superhero icon. This option is meant to represent the idea that everyone has (figurative) dreams about something or someone that they wish they could save or even to be a hero to someone. It could also be interpreted as becoming a superhero which represents society’s view of the perfect person- something everyone finds themselves wishing for at some point. The next option is the “Become a Millionaire” option which represents the dream that most people have of becoming successful, whether it being financially or in any other aspect of their lives. Finally, the last option is memories. This option represents the memories of the past that people hold on to or regrets about the past people may still have.
For this comic I used Adobe Illustrator for the first time and found it more time consuming than I originally thought it would be. I found it easier to stick to a more simplistic style or idiom, since I do not have much experience. To do this I used the shape tool frequently and chose to draw more stick figure looking characters. For the craft step, I incorporated some factors seen in the typical comic that we learned about in class. I conveyed expression, time, and interdependent word combinations. To convey expression, I mostly did this through the way I chose to draw the faces on the stick figures- mostly the eyebrows. In the first panel, the man is sleeping peacefully with a smile on his face. Then throughout the comic the character is happy in all of his dreams except for the last one, where he appears to be apprehensive. I conveyed a sense of time by showing the night sky in the background window so that the audience understands the character is sleeping at night. Lastly, interdependent word combinations are an aspect of this comic because the words help the reader understand the story and put it into context. Without the words, the images don’t exactly speak for themselves or seem to fit together. Finally for the surface, or production step I used Illustrator and applied different techniques within the program. I mostly played with color, dimension, and contrast. In the first panel the colors are all solid with no contrast or dimension and are dark colors to show it is night time. The rest of the images in the comic are made with lighter colors and have more dimension and layering. The background dream bubble contains many different hues of blues that are all layered. The brush strokes are also different than that of the first panel. The brush strokes are not as solid and opaque as the rest of the images to show a more airy, dreamlike feel. Also, in the last panel or circle the colors are slightly darker and there is less contrast than the rest of the panels. This is done to demonstrate the idea that the image represents a distant memory, which is why there is less detail. In memories we often can not recall all of the details about the setting it took place in, so I tried to convey that in this image by only highlighting a couple of the objects in color.
This weekly comic was much more ambitious than my last comics because I used Illustrator rather than drawing this time. This was my first time using Illustrator so I learned how to use it while making the comic. I found it a lot easier than photoshop and actually enjoyed using it. It was more difficult to convey the exact images I wanted to, but I think the ideas were communicated effectively.