Monday, January 11, 2010

ZX Page 29: Retrograde Advance

I'm posting from my girlfriend's computer, I almost forgot it was monday. I finished the page yesterday and I guess the stress relief of having done that erased the mental reminder to actually post the page.

As for the story and why Marina is being so disappointed about, if you're asking yourself 'what, have I missed something here?' then go back and check the chapter number of this sequence. Thou hast been flash-forwarded, sire.

I know it's bad form to say so, but I really like the middle panel. In the pencil art there was a little note in the corner of the panel reading "perhaps render this like Mignola?". Well, I guess I didn't, exactly, but the high-contrast without many hatched lines works for what I wanted, emotionally. Also the final panel worked better that I thought it would in the pencil art, what with the ambiguousness of whether the silluette is driving towards us or away from us. Reader participation: did you read it instinctively as if she's driving away or not? If too many readers say 'towards the viewer' I'm going to have to change it a bit for the final printing to make it more clear it's riding away.

Oh, also, this is the only 'pop-culture' reference in the whole comic (and probably one of the only recurring ones in the whole of my work, come to think of it): Zzap!64 Can you remember where you've seen it before?



Johanh said...

To me it looks like she's driving away. It's hard for me to see it any other way even if I try.

Helm said...

I suspect it's down to side-of-brain priority really. Have you seen these animated silluettes of ballerinas or whatever else rotating where some people see them rotating clockwise and others counterclockwise and if you try hard enough you can 'flip' it in your mind?

I tried to enforce 'seeing her as driving away' also with a subtle psychological trick that works in comics (at least for western audiences): The figure is facing (and therefore advancing towards) the left of the page, which for western readers means she's going backwards in their reading order, this signifies setback, peril, failure, stuff like that. It's one of the oldest effects in comics, popularized by Tin Tin's Herge. When Tin Tin is making progress in his case, his figure moves rightwards, when he's being persued by evildowers or when he's tumbling down a mountain or something, he's going leftwards.

So the subtle psychological effect here is meant to denote that Marina is leaving in something of a defeat.