Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Composition: Big in Japan 1 page 1

Continuing with the discussion of what makes good illustration from Judith Johnson, she starts out by saying that the composition of an illustration can be symmetrical or asymmetrical. In the case of a comic book, we are looking at both the composition of individual frames, and at the page as a whole. Seth always took both into consideration.
This page is asymmetrical in composition, although the dominant bottom frame is only slightly so, with three people running toward us, two large figures on right and left, and a smaller one in the middle.
Next she asks how the lines in the illustration encourage us to move our eyes over the whole page. "A good illustrator often keeps us visually engaged by encouraging our gaze to move in a slightly oval path in which we go back into the work and move through it again and again, noticing something new each time. A focal point is a place in the drawing that we return to over and over again." The woman's horrified expression seems to me to be a focal point in this page, next the man on the left, then the man in the middle, then we look up to see what it is that is frightening them.
More on composition tomorrow, looking at a different page.

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