Post #4: Visual Narrative I

Understanding Comics

I enjoy both writing and drawing, which has got me thinking about creating a comic book, or like other people have told me, a graphic novel. When I was reading Understanding Comics about the panel-to-panel transitions and how they work, as well as the different types, I was surprised by how little I knew about creating comic books. I mostly read Japanese comics (Manga), which has a different style to the western comic books. Also, I read comics that are from up to down while scrolling down my phone’s screen, which has made it easier to follow. Still, I was not aware of how panel transitions work, especially when I once tried to do it myself. I would like to try and implement different ways of panel-to-panel transitions and the bleeds as well. The bleeds are something I notice the most when I’m reading Japanese comics, which has me mesmerized and intrigued. 

Some things that I found interesting while reading Understanding Comics, the motion lines. These lines give motion to any object, person, creature, and scene, which makes the work more vivid and alive. I want my comics to be just as vivid as these lines and create something that intrigues the audience. 

Because of my interest in Japanese comic style, I would love to create a work inspired by it. Thanks to Understanding Comics, I’m more aware of the type of structure and style they follow. For example, they use aspect-to-aspect for some of their panel transitions, page bleed to emphasize a scene or feeling, and motion line to show motion.

Post #3: Diagrammatic Storytelling

Dramatic Writing & Great Rock and Roll Pauses:

The Great Rock and Roll Pauses story focuses on the relationship between a family. Sasha Blake, the mother; Lincoln Blake, the brother; Drew Blake, the father; and Alison Blake, the one narrating the story. Alison, the narrator, explains that Drew does not understand his son Lincoln and through the story he sounds worried about Lincoln not having a friend come over, and he is also worried about his son’s obsession with music. The conflict I believe is Drew not understanding his son and being worried about him, which caused that conflict between both of them and Sasha as well. At the end Alison talks about the walk she had with her father outside in the desert. Drew starts to understand that he needs to accept his son just like he is not to worry about him obsessing with music. He wants to understand his son, and try as many times to be able to do so. For me, the format of this story was an interesting one, I have never read something like this before. All the colors and arrow, and graphs, and shapes, everything made it look well coordinated and intriguing to read. The narrator had a great way to demonstrate when someone was talking and thinking, and which colors represent each character. That was a lovely detail from this diagrammatic form.

After reading Dramatic Writing and Great Rock and Roll Pauses, many ideas for creating my own diagrammatic form have come to mind. From the story Great Rock and Roll Pauses, there were many colors used, especially vibrant ones, which in my case I don’t enjoy using myself. But, they can work if they are well integrated, just like in this story. I would prefer pastel colors and black & white to do my own diagrammatic form. The Dramatic Writing reading has some great examples of how I can experiment with my font size. I liked this quote from that reading, “A diagram is an image that works (23).” Which made sense for me after reading the story Great Rock and Roll Pauses.

Post #2: Narrative Traditions II

Small Deaths Movie:

This film seems to be focusing on a girl, each chapter being a stage of her life. It seems to be giving the audience a feeling of what is going around this character. The audience can only see and hear what is happening, it also gives the audience an open idea of what can happen later on in this character’s life. The first chapter is Ma and Da, which for me means mother and father through the eyes of a child. The warm colors around the house evokes some kind of feeling, for me warm colors are comfortable and have feelings of happiness. The parents seem to have some kind of conflict, especially when he did not answer her question about “coming back tonight.” For chapter Holy Cow, the sound together with the curiosity of the two girls exploring the area evoked familiar memories from my childhood. There will be different feelings coming from the audience while listening to the sound of nature. The only color that I see contrasting with the other is red, especially coming from the cow’s blood. The Joke chapter, one that was hard to follow for me, especially the joke from her friends. The only thing I noticed is how the character’s emotions are well put into the situation that is happening in that room. Also, giving the audience the feeling of wonder when the main character is walking up the stairs not knowing what we will be seeing next. 

The structure of this story is simple and can be followed by the audience. The story doesn’t have many conflicts that are visual, maybe there are more internal conflicts coming from the main character, especially when we don’t know what was going on in her house when she was a child. The ending is opened for the audience to interpret, which gives us more room to create our own assumptions. 


She & Her Cat:

This film has an easy structure and story to follow. The narrator is the cat and his point of view of what is going around his surroundings. If these were only images with no narrator explaining what was happening, I would have a different idea of the story. It is intriguing how the cat narrator describes the sounds and the smells, especially because those are the two senses that are well developed in a cat. The black and white color scheme made it feel sad and emotive. There is a conflict that the audience is not aware of, just like the narrator. In this situation we are given the freedom to fill in a situation that might have caused the girl to leave the cat behind. We don’t see her face, but we see her body and listen to the cat’s description of how she is. A surprising ending coming from this story, something that maybe some saw coming, but I did not. Having a narrator to guide the audience can be helpful in some situations or stories, and having a narrator as a cat is even more interesting for some people. This story evokes the cat’s feelings, to which he sounds grateful for everything she has done and given to him. I hear no remorse coming from the cat at the end, it seems to be something that he in a way understands why she left.

Post #1 – Fargo and Aristotle

This is my first time watching the film, and each of the characters had interesting personalities. One character that surprised me the most was Jerry Lundegaard. Even though he is a husband and a father, his character doesn’t seem to care about his family’s feelings. He puts his needs, in this case money, before family. In my perspective he can also be an antagonist because of the way he acted during the whole situation with his wife. Jerry is an important part of the plot, without him and his need of obtaining money, there wouldn’t have been any kidnapping or assassinations, no story, and no interference from the police. Act of ignorance coming from him. 

The Aristotle: Poetics book explains on page 10 chapter VI, “Tragedy, then, is an imitation of an action that is serious, complete, and of a certain magnitude…”, and “action implies personal agents, who necessarily possess certain distinctive qualities both of character and thought…” Which applies to the tragedy that happened in the film. In this case the action taken in the film that led to the tragedy was the kidnapping of Jean Lundegaard. The action was taken which led to assassinations and police involvement. 

The character Marge Gunderson was the opposite of Jerry. She was too nice, polite, and also fearless. It is interesting how she is a police officer and is always calm and professional doing her job trying to catch the assassin. Which is totally different to her character reaction when she meets with Mike Yanahita. She was nervous when he was expressing his feelings, something her character won’t show during the dangerous situations she encounters.


My name is Cynthia Elizalde and this is my third year in WSUV. I’m a Humanities major with concentrations on English and Foreign Languages and Cultures, and a Creative Writing minor. When it comes to reading a book and watching a film, I enjoy genres such as Fantasy, Mystery, Fiction, Drama, Romance, and Action. I do enjoy reading manga, books, comic books, and online stories. I enjoy watching films and series from different countries, so that I can have a broader view of what the world has to offer through stories. It is interesting to learn how these stories from other countries are inspired by their own myths, urban stories, history, and culture. This is one of the reasons why I decided to have one of my Humanities’ concentrations as Foreign Languages and Cultures. 

I do have an interest in video games, especially when they have interesting stories and characters to follow along. Because of my lack of time, I have only played games such as Genshin Impact and Cookie Run for the last two years. These games have interesting character designs and world building, that is something that caught my attention and decided to play them. I want to create characters that are interesting for the audience and have a well written world so that people can immerse themselves into it. A game that has inspired me the most is Undertale. The story was intriguing and emotional, and it became one of my favorites of all time. Some series that have inspired me are To Your Eternity by Yoshitoki Oima, its story being  fantasy and emotional.