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English 101

What affordances and limitations emerge when the traditionally paper comic is made digital?

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OVERVIEW
In the spirit of this week’s reading, your foundational assignment is to give me something ILLUSTRATED! Your work must respond to the reading you’ve done for week / module 5, but NOT the “Stroop Effect” candy video.
Assignment At-A-Glance: Make a comic (or something similar) that refers to, illuminates, or otherwise explores the reading you did this week.
DETAILS
Consider what “illustrated” means. Comic books, some collages, and illuminated manuscripts all exemplify a words-and-pictures paradigm. Extend that out to include animation and you’ll get 3D animation, 2D puppetry, flipbooks, and more.
Your task is to document your reading for this week in media that incorporates both WORDS and IMAGES. This means that your submission must do the following:
Incorporate words and pictures together, whether this is a collage, an illumination / illustration, a cartoon, or a comic.
Specifically reference the reading which we have done this week (again: not the candy video).
Consider web design & writing principles discussed thus far – this might mean adapting your submission to something like the webcomic format, or it may mean incorporating images into a listicle or simply including your images in a way that conforms to best practices.
Your work DOES NOT HAVE TO:
Be a super- amazing piece of graphic art. Some of us can’t draw very well. I totally understand that – just try. Please also note that if you can’t draw, collage or some other form of visual sampling or remix might be right for you.
DISCUSSION
What are the associative leaps needed to correlate an image with accompanying words? What play can be had by confronting or subverting those expectations? Where do comics “stand” as a medium / art form / product? How do they intersect with illuminated manuscripts, paintings, and so on? What affordances and limitations emerge when the traditionally paper comic is made digital?
Comics go through waves of “respectability” with widely varying assumptions based on one’s familiarity with the industry (production and consumption). Academia (universities) have taken Comics seriously since sometime in the 1960s and the emergence of culture studies, but academia and popular culture don’t always see eye to eye. For that matter, not *every* university in the world takes comics seriously – so it goes. We are hardly so unified as our critics assume or imply.
This week, you have only to try your hand at blending words and *still* images. As with any such experiment, I am not so much interested in your artistic skills (though I expect you to try) as I am interested in your ability to learn and internalize our reading. Produce a one-page comic, an illuminated essay, or similar. If you do something that is very image-heavy (even if those images are gorgeously rendered and artistically impressive – and especially if you’re drawing stick figures or bubble people), write a paragraph explaining the intersection of your work and this week’s reading.
Note, again: that the reading I want you to respond to should be the scholarly, thoughtful, media-centric work: that might include the history of Manga, the history of illustrated manuscripts, or you could go back and reference scholarly reading done earlier: Benjamin, Ong, Haas, and so on.
SUBMISSION
One illustrated story, article, anecdote, etcetera, equating to about a page of writing, taking this weeks’ reading for its topic.
Note: Referencing scholarly reading from other previous weeks (Benjamin, Haas, Ong, etc) is also acceptable.
POSSIBLE: One brief DESCRIPTION explaining your work, ESPECIALLY if your work is image-heavy and text-light. Help me understand how your illustrated work reflects this week’s reading. If all you’re submitting is, say, a single drawing or a three panel joke comic, you need to write a short paragraph explaining (to my satisfaction) how this “works” for the assignment.

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