Art history grad student creates ‘Considering Comics’ online exhibit
“Considering Comics” is a new VCU Libraries online gallery exhibit. The exhibit was created by Veronica Parker, Art History Master’s candidate, who fulfilled a 2019 internship with the James Branch Cabell Library Special Collections and Archives. The exhibit may well inspire others interested in studying or making comics.
The art historian turned to a variety of original sources to curate an exhibit that explores the making of comic arts.
Materials credited included:
- Gaiman, Neil, and J. H. Williams. The Sandman: Overture: Deluxe Edition. Burbank, CA: DC Comics/Vertigo, 2015. 39-40.
- G., Ash. Elements: Fire. Edited by Taneka Stotts. Beyond Press, 2017. 87.
- Vess, Charles. Scotland Yard Detective, Page 1-A. 1987. Charles Vess Papers M374, VCU Libraries, James Branch Cabell Library, Special Collections and Archives. (Image, above right, by Vess, Scotland Yard Detective, Page 1-A.)
Her reading and research produced an exhibit that dissects the six building blocks of comic arts–paper, layout, drawing, text, color and scale. She approaches each element from a beginner’s viewpoint using illustrative examples from Cabell Library’s Comics Arts Collection. She also provides detailed descriptions of each work explaining how it furthers understanding of the underling concept.
In the exhibit’s introduction, she writes: “Comics exist in the middle-ground between art and literature. Drawing from elements from each, comics creators developed the medium into the sequential narrative art form that we know and love. Combining text with art in a sequential order to create a cohesive narrative is not something that happens spontaneously. Like painting or novels, comics work under a set of principles. These principles are what visually and functionally set comics apart from other media, or to put it simply, they make comics appear to be comics.”
She explains essential concepts involved in the construction of comic arts. This exhibition serves as an introduction for anyone interested in how comics work and how they can be made.