Monday 7 May 2012


'It's Just this' was a good story to use because i had no preconceptions of what i wanted it to really look like, like i normally do with my comics. Meaning i had no hang ups and was free to purely take the signatures from each directors and apply it to the narrative in order to tell it.

The Wes Anderson 'It's Just This' was probably closest to my own interpretation of the story simply because of the melancholy and 'just life' nature of the narrative and my love and use of that kind of colour palette in my own work; Actually i was influenced like this because of him to begin with anyway funnily enough.
It differs from me mainly in the way that i wouldn't have done all the cells the same and i wouldn't have such samey imagery (although it works well for the story). Also, his love of symmetry has been quite interesting to work with because i have always said i dislike symmetry in images (i'm guessing due to an art school training where asymmetry was the way to a more appealing composition). I can see from this experiment just how using it however helps the 'decorative' look his films all have. Which is one of the reasons why i enjoy them so much. This along with the 'just about people and their lives' ethos, and the fact he seems to care about his characters who have so much life to them despite sometimes doing very little. (A funny opposite to the hollow shells of formula approved characters featuring in hollywood blockbusters, in which everything in the world happens all at once...)
This applies to all the other Wes Anderson inspired work i did with this experiment too ('The Cat's Dead', 'Good Morning, Lethargy').
The Kubrik version mainly focused on eyes and his famous 'long shot'. I feel it keeps the slightly un-easily and often abrupt scenes like that of a work of Kubrik.
I think my favorite of the three however is the Lynch inspired one. One reason is simply because it makes me laugh. I'd never do something like that off my own back; Not because of dis- interest but because of a lack of time to be spent on things deemed more 'bread winning'. Another is, i think it has the odd unease and the amusing yet oddly disturbing quality to it that is associated with Mr Lynch. It totally changes the way the comic is perceived and it's interesting to read it like that and have this interpretation. The pictures in the case of this one especially really do add to and effect the narrative; Rather than just playing second fiddle to it.

The experiment really works as an a test of narrative structure and form; The same story presented in different ways and thus read differently by the viewer. It also has the fun element and research behind it of the directors to give it a certain direction and another way in which the success can be evaluated if you know the work of them.

The research experiments into abstraction was on top of everything else, was in particular something i would never think to do unless i had written doing so into something like this. As it is nothing to do with my practice apart from the questioning nature of storytelling. I found it very freeing in the way i think about things when i first start projects and there were things to be learnt and applied to my authorship just from that.
It was interesting looking into colour theory and the meaning behind them more and that, of course, can be applied. Symbolism is also a slight curiosity to me.

This project has been amusing and good fun as well as getting me thinking indifferent ways, like i hoped it would. I can see really how they effected and helped my major project. Most noticeably in i think with 'Numb', a comic i did as part of my FMP. I applied a different form. Brush pen-y and a more visually and flowing page layout. Different colour colour palette. Wes.
I defiantly want to do more comics with the wes colours and even maybe try more with the decoration (i've always liked drawing rooms with wallpaper) and symmetry.
All in all, it just made me approach comics in different ways and think differently about how i would and could do them; which was the point. So i think it was a success in that way.

Sunday 6 May 2012

Wes Anderson Just This- Abstracted and Wordless Versions...

So due to the way that the Wes Anderson version of 'It's Just This'  was coloured on the computer (to get those lovely colours), i found it interested that when i took away the lines layer in photoshop it created a abstract version of the comic. In the same way that i was explaining before with creating abstract versions this way. I think in this case it is quite effective as you can gage the narrative quite well when left with the text...or at least the tone and the surroundings.
The colours are more pronounced and part of the story telling process when it's like this as well i have found.

I also thought this story would be a good one to experiment with form by making it wordless. I think the tone and atmosphere still come across quite well. The narrative can still be guessed more or less as nothing really is happening in the narrative anyway.


This is the director where i think the story fits most. The indifference, not much happening, insight into people's lives synonymous with Wes Anderson films.
So beginning with the typeface used...Futura; used in most of his films for the credits, title, chapter in films text on screen. Usually i always want to hand render my type but i felt in a case where the director has a font associated with them i had to use it.
The colour scheme, muted and also bright bold colours (teals and ochres) that feature so nicely in the cinematography of a Wes film. (one of my favourite thing about his films...)
I also did the cells in the narrow shape to match the narrow with black border framing his films always have.

The first cell is a homage to the focus on a significant gesture used in his films. (The Royal Tenenbaums) and the many times he films from the above, centred items below.
Framing of characters, the symmetry! The decore, wallpaper and attention to detail to explain who the characters are. (Rushmore) 
Faces at despairing moments. Framed like the third cell. (Fantastic Mr Fox)
Indifference, emotionless.
Repetition of the same place, the same shot, fits well with the point of the samey-ness of life the story is talking about.
character moving around in the same space.
Characters in the same arrangement but somewhere else, with the same expressions.
Close up when introducing/meeting and explaining new characters.
More preoccupation with symmetry.
More focus on small gestures.

I also did a version with a black background for visual purposes. I think it probably looks nicer like this? More fitting with the movie feel?...


EYES! A common use for an insight into the character and their emotions. Extreme close up of eyes.
Framed characters as introduction to them, who they are, how they are feeling.
Flashing images, sudden, often red. Abrupt. Disturbing. I thought laughing faces was appropriate for both this and the story i'm trying to tell itself.
Crazy colours. Sequences of them.
Red face.
'Social surrealism' The room, meet the characters, who they are by how they live. Kubrik often uses images like stills in his films (A Clockwork Orange). A fan of 'a painting is worth 1000 words.'
Sequences. The long shot. Often Kubrik uses, and is famous for, using really long continuos shots throughout the same space where many things can happen or be explained. So i did the same. (The Shining).
Red image.
Extreme close up of eye for new character.
Social surrealism again. You meet joe, a still explaining joe by what he is doing, what his surrounding are.


First up is David Lynch...

Lynch films often have over-worldy elements to them or just the general feel, Surreal and unexplained, unnoticed oddness. Start with going into an ear (Blue Velvet).
Often funny yet dark. That sort of not sure why you are laughing/why it's funny/is it funny or is it gross?!
Unexplained screaming (Eraserhead), strange detached expressions.
Sat at a tabe cell- Normal situations/ the mundane but odd in some uneasy way. Weird. A common device in his films.
Out of this world.
The lone figure...lynch often has shots like this. The innocent amongst a mess of bad things.
Red Curtains (mise-en-scene of Twin Peaks)
Fade to white.
The whole thing is in black and white (except the red) Because it seemed fitting with the dark tones and Lynch uses this idea too.
Macabre yet mundane.

Plans for film director experiments...

I can find the things i am experimenting in more pronounced and obvious in films and i love watching them (good ones!). So looking at directors with a recognisable 'style' is a good way of playing with narrative structure and form as i already have an understanding of codes and conventions attached to certain films and know what to look for in terms of further reasearch.

So one of my objectives and probably the one that interested me the most was trying to learn from the storytelling devices of some film directors. It's been running throughout this project as you can probably see in my sketchbook scribbles i've uploaded. I would now count this as main main experimentation really. I didn't know this when i started but it's interesting to see which planned experiment has taken off.
When i first had the idea it was mainly focusing on Wes Anderson (director of, Rushmore and The Royal Tenenbaums...) Trying out doing a comic with the tone and passing of his films (The Cat's Dead). Also a picture that had the cinematography, colours, symmetrical, placing of characters.
Now i've narrowed down to 3 directors that i'v researched the devices and signatures of...

David Lynch.
Stanley Kubrik.
Wes Anderson.

I'm going to use my 'It's Just This' script that i came up with early on in the process. I think It will be good to use because firstly and simply i want to do something with it. But more importantly for the point of this experiment i think it is a good starting point for variation. 
In the picture below you can see some of the main points i've highlighted to use in this experiment for each director.

The storyboard for the David Lynch 'It's Just This'.

The storyboard for the Stanley Kubrik 'It's Just This'.

The storyboard for the Wes Anderson 'It's Just This'.

Wednesday 2 May 2012

EXPERIMENT: Surrealism- Pip's Picnic.

A painting i did as concept art for a story my friend wrote for me with my characters. It's about a picnic and then it falls into another dimension...
I want to do something bigger with it one day but for now i though as a surreal story it was appropriate to talk about it here in turns of experimenting with the surreal.