A Little About Me - Commentary

My project shows a simple, yet unique style of art that borrows some elements of Japanese comics, or manga. Lack of gutter space, or spaces between panels, is one of the biggest influences I’ve picked up from reading manga. More American-style panels and gutters feel to me like a lot of boxed in scenes.

I also borrowed some iconic symbols from manga. American comics readers might be used to a light bulb over a character’s head, for example, to show a good idea, while manga readers have a whole different set of symbols that might not make sense to us. The popping vein on page eight, for example, shows my character being annoyed, and on page four, I drew lines on and behind my character’s face to show my character feeling shocked and uneasy.

In general, images make it easier to convey emotion and grab the audience’s empathy. Actually seeing characters’ expressions helps readers grasp how strong the emotions run in these simple stories. Even the background can add emotion, making an atmosphere feel heavier or lighter.

In one story, however, the story about pushing the couch into the elevator, I decided to leave the characters even less detailed than the other stories were. I wanted to show how I was starting new after my high school career. Plus, it was such a silly story and probably the most relatable one, so I wanted to leave the faces blank to make it easier for the reader to put themselves into the characters.

We live in a more and more visual age, in which it’s sometimes easier to understand and remember pictures than words. Graphic stories can help readers—like myself—who sometimes have trouble analyzing and retaining information by reading just words.

About the Author

Samantha Horsch

Samantha Horsch is a junior majoring in broadcasting with a minor in theater at Goshen College.