tisdag 10 april 2012

Comics storytelling 15: Panels & distance

Moving on with the basics, here's a look at how the comics artist can use the medium's very limits as a storytelling device. Hemmed in by the size and shape of the Sunday page he has at his disposal, Mutts artist Patrick McDonnell slices it into three oblong panels, which emphasizes their lateral dimension, allowing him to use that to in turn emphasize the – physical – distance between Earl the dog and his beloved master Ozzie.

Btw, note the little detail of Earl's tail wagging as he looks back at Ozzie; this reinforces the love expressed in the words Earl is "speaking", "Our hearts are connected", which is in fact the point of the strip. A beautiful touch to a beautiful little story, told in merely three panels.

Granted, three very loooong panels, but still.

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