Understanding Comics The Invisible Art Viral Ebook I finished reading it for my comics YA Graphic novels class this summer and now again I ll read this and use it to help people und
Understanding Comics: The Invisible Art Viral Ebook I finished reading it for my comics/YA Graphic novels class this summer, 6/16/16 and now again, 8/8/17. I'll read this and use it to help people understand comics every year. It's the primary source though there are many good books coming out. What I have to add is that I had a fun conversation with my class about one insightful claim McCloud makes, that the simpler and more "cartoony" a comic representation is (i.e., a smiley face), the more universal it will be, the more we will say "that's me." In fiction classes I was taught to be as specific and detailed as I could be about characters and places. McCloud says that realistic depictions of characters such as in superhero comics are actually less relatable than simple characters such as Charlie Brown or Nancy, or most manga. Less is more, in a way. That's like suggesting that minimalism (something like Raymond Carver's stories, or Ernest Hemingway's stories) invite readers in more because we as readers have more space to "be" the characters, to connect with them. Maybe this is less true for non-comics fiction, though. But McCloud is interesting.Review from before: I've used this book many times to teach comics basics. It's the best book I've found for doing this, and it's in a comics format, with McCloud as the cartoony and erudite "narrator". While thoroughly practical, it's also the most philosophical and thorough and at the same time efficient guide to the craft. McCloud also wrote Making Comics, for comics artists. This book is one of the classics of comic history, one of its great books for helping you understand and appreciate comics for their potential complexity as an hybrid art form, without question. If you want to know how comics are made in all its range of possibilities, and if you want to take see why this interrelated telling of visuals and words should be taken seriously as art and literature and cultural commentary and entertainment, this is the book for you.. The bestselling international classic on storytelling and visual communication You must read this book Neil GaimanPraised throughout the cartoon industry by such luminaries as Art Spiegelman, Matt Groening, and Will Eisner, Scott McCloud s Understanding Comics is a seminal examination of comics art its rich history, surprising technical components, and major culturalThe bestselling international classic on storytelling and visual communication You must read this book Neil GaimanPraised throughout the cartoon industry by such luminaries as Art Spiegelman, Matt Groening, and Will Eisner, Scott McCloud s Understanding Comics is a seminal examination of comics art its rich history, surprising technical components, and major cultural significance Explore the secret world between the panels, through the lines, and within the hidden symbols of a powerful but misunderstood art form.. Bestseller Book Understanding Comics: The Invisible Art Great book, but I'm too annoyed to give it four stars. It's amateurish, but I believe if you're aware of how great a book is while you're reading it, it's not working at its best. You can go 'oh wow that's such a clever way to illustrate this idea, and the text is so effective', but it's a bit like reading an instruction manual, and nothing personal or particularly poignant. I guess the idea is to understand the basic structure and potential of comic art, but must it be so academic and dry? The book doesn't limit itself to the conventional art theory, but rather ventures into fundamental epistemological and phenomenological debates. It's informative and eye opening, but not particularly relevant, like every single other art theory textbook. Except this one has pictures (or should I say, integrated with pictures?) Understanding Comics is a misleading title, perhaps How to and why you should appreciate comics would suit the purpose of the book better. Majority of people (in terms of an audience that is likely to pick up a comic-related theory book) has little trouble understanding the intention of the drawing and writing - we can feel the atmosphere, be moved by the characters and thrilled by the action. Appreciating the history, concept and techniques that help build it up are, however, often overlooked. Much like film and literature, comics require a lot of conceptual and aesthetic decision to make it effective and communicative, and McCloud tries hard to evaluate the general methods that are used to convey these expressions. It would work better if he utilise more specific works rather than general 'rules', and most of them only applicable to mainstream comics. The last chapter goes on about the importance of 'understanding', and how comics can serve as a great tool of communication. Frankly it is a bit arrogant to me. No matter what your medium - ink and paper, music, written words, motion picture, performance, construction, we as the audience give ourselves far less credit when apprehending these art forms. We are subjected to arbitrary education, test and criticism that are meant to 'guide' our 'understanding' of the creator's concept and execution - how to read them, how to properly experience them, how to get the most of it like the artist 'wants' us to. I feel as though McCloud is saying, 'I'm the creator, and you are the reader. Through these lines and colour, I'm telling you what is being expressed. Do you get it? DO YOU GET IT?'. Fuck this I don't have understand everything in order to appreciate it, have you never read Pynchon or seen anything David Lynch?Comic art is merely another form of story telling, it is equally capable of being as representational or avant-garde as any other art form. 'Understanding comics is serious business' - why is it serious? why not just go out and say 'respecting comics is serious business'. McCloud also comments on how the merit of comics lies in its ability to convey 'individual voices' through mass production - really now? If you want personal expression, why not read a few blogs, talk to strangers in the park, speaker's corner, open mic, go to a concert, underground gig, restaurant, flickr, public toilet, open market, join whatever radical societies there are out there? It is almost ridiculous to have to remind people that comics are capable of being expressionistic, and please don't try to say your choice of material expresses something more profound, original than the others or with more efficiency. Why the fuck should it be efficient? Aren't you arguing that comics can be art too? Then why should it be readable, straightforward and commercial like everything else? GAH I'm angry!What McCloud is saying is that as an artist you have more control over the output. But at least for me, I don't care if you came up with the entire concept or worked in a team as long as the outcome is insightful and fun. And then he started talking about the human condition and how we can fix the world with reading more comics. YEAH. And then there are angels reading comics, statues of bullied comic readers, massive yin yang symbol! montage of great art works! The world map! Epic lightening! 'THE TRUTH WILL SHINE THROUGH'! (real quote) That goes on for about 20 pages. Dear comic art - Don't overestimate yourself, not because you're insignificant. Yes you have a long history indeed, and we 'understand' you're not just some flat tone sexist superhero adventure, and that you can be as postmodern as any other art school asshole graduate. Message received. *Picture above: single panel from Moebius' 40 Days in the Desert I don't get it, but it's awesome.