Understand, do and reinventing comics by Scott McCloud | Review


Published on Oct 08, 2018


Often in libraries, see various volumes who want to teach aspiring designers how to start taking the pencil in his hand, and the results are, however, inconclusive; now Bao brings us a book historical and basic, which collects the three works written by Scott McCloud in different eras of his professional life and his growth, between 1993 and 2006 (to Reinvent the comic strip is 2000).

To understand the comic part from the attempt to give a definition of “comics“, McCloud, who accompanies the player as an avatar, builds slowly, adding one word at a time to distinguish this medium from the others. Then follows an overview of when he was born, the comic strip and find out how in reality the use of sequential images is farther back than what we think. After this introduction, however interesting, you can enter in the specific of the analysis, starting from the concept of the icon. From here unravels the explanation on how to represent the reality in the world of comics, succeeding McCloud to describe the differences between the different schools, such as the BD or japanese comics. This opens up new reflections on the world of images sequenzali, ranging from space to time, way of describing a fact, to the point of observation and the color...

This part, in addition to being her very interessnte for the issues that is, it is also explained very well, there are various examples that McCloud brings and the story overall is very scrorevole, even if in some points is required, of course, more attention. Very interesting final reflection on the importance that can have the comic strip to break down the barriers between people, precisely due to the fact of being a visual art.

Reinventing comics is the sequel to the first volume, but in fact it can be seen as a superposition. The necessity of its writing – is the author himself say so in the introduction – the importance of the web in those years, subsequent to the publication of the first volume (which is dedicated the entire part 2 of the volume).

However, the base is always the same, the demonstration of the dignity of the comic strip as a medium; here, too, the historical digression the initial does is that when the illustrratori had no consciousness of what they were and considered themselves intattenitori. McCloud denies this definition, as it was considered the equal of the other arts of man. What, therefore, is to express the author is that the comic has the potential to be a serious literature. And it does by combining his personal and professional experience with the history of the medium, showing an evolution and an involution, the gains made (and the ones that then tend to get lost), in an attempt to lift from the bottom to the top. This is dealt with on various levels, from that of the comics industry, is considered as a big corporation, on the ground of the relationship that unites the author with his reader. But to expand the medium, it is also necessary to expand the audience, also varying the medium in new directions (12 revolutions of comics and McCLoud), which speak to minorities, to women and to gender diversity. From here, the analysis moves both on the authors than on the authors, representatives of minorities, as Spiegelmann, who have given their vision in the comics, conditioning and arrichiata from their life.

Comics always sees the avatar of McCloud (with a bit of white hair this time) that takes the reader in this tome, in which the author describes the creative processes that are at the source of the comic: so he gives lessons on the basic issues and the most complex that stem from the storytelling, but embrace the character design, the choice of the framing, the facial expressions and many other aspects of the medium, with examples from the history of comics and from each school. Also here, Scott does not disappoint and is able to explain with great simplicity the more complex topics, although often reducing them or simplify them (but we wanted skills for this).

What is important to note that the more you appreciate is that the thought of McCLoud is a thought always in movement, that does not stop and is not fossilized in those volumes (thing especially valid for Reinventing the comic book, which often has failed to imagine the future); the three volumes themselves are in fact, the evolution of the author's thought, which has continued and continues to reflect on the book, as testiminiato from the next his webcomic " I Can't Stop Thinking, all practical purposes come true, a continuation of Reinventing comics.

That said, given the topic, I recommend this volume? Definitely a must for who is in the industry and for the real fans, who want to understand how it works the medium of your choice; only the curious or casual readers probably will already frightened by the number of pages... And this also applies to re-invent, even if not proved a good prophet for the occasion, still manages to give us moments of wise reflection of the author.

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