Julia Hanson “i” Constraint

This experiment was certainly a bit harder than I expected, though I still thought “I” was one of the easier vowels as we discussed in class. I tried to focus on unusual words (Imrigh is defined as a strong Scottish soup, who knew?), Ictic, and ibis (in the picture) in order to convey the strangeness of the text through words which also evoke unusual images.

It isn’t instinct, this trick. It’s ibis

sighting, trying, fitting, swimming!

Ictic! Imrigh! Insipid it isn’t, Icy in its

i.d. Idly I illicit ilk in its insidy

bits. Ill with minty imp,

pin in mind, singing,

wishing, fling ill

will!

Sun in Pisin Mo’o-Julia Hanson

During my freshman year, I was part of a service trip that traveled to the Pisin Mo’o reservation in Arizona. The experience was eye opening and inspiring in countless ways, but something I found particularly interesting was the way in which religion, culture, and the younger generation of people on the reservation are intertwined. The first photo (top left) was taken of a church we saw on the first day of the trip at a fair. Most of the attendees of the fair were white tourists, which created a strange dynamic because they were essentially watching Native Americans not only perform exhibitions such as dance and art, but also doing normal things such as cooking and selling souvenirs. The second shot (top right) is of a cross located in the village we stayed at. Compared to the first church, this cross is much more barren and indicative of the part of the community which is not seen by tourists, or anyone besides those who live there. The bottom two shots are of the children, who were vibrant, smart, curious kids like any others. Their relationship to their culture and heritage, as well as religion and the challenges they face, is complicated and indicative of the struggle of the culture as a whole to progress despite serious challenges facing inhabitants of the reservation at any age.

Julia Hanson SPX Review

Upon entering SPX, I was immediately struck by the wide range of artists and writers present in the convention. What also struck me was that distinction in general: the difference between artist and writer. Some people I talked to defined themselves as artists and some as writers, and some as both. As a newcomer to the graphic novel/comic narrative world, I thought this difference was really interesting. The idea that these people express their thoughts and experiences, or those they have fictionalized, through graphic design is fascinating to me because, as an English major and creative writing minor, I would not think to use images to convey thoughts or expressions.

 

One man I talked to wrote a few different comics about his time living in New York City in the 1970s. The way he wrote the text on the images was very sparse/almost messy compared to the details of the images, which dealt with sexuality, race, drug use, and the chaos of the city at the time in general. The images depicted the issues he went through, and the people he experienced the times with. I found myself much more engrossed in the images than the text, although the stories were engrossing and the dialogue was well written. Perhaps it is just because I am not yet used to the medium, but I sometimes find it distracting to have the juxtaposition of detailed images and scene-heavy text because I feel one takes away from the other.

 

Another artist I talked to had written a comic about her first year living alone in Philadelphia. It was called “One Year” and was a really interesting juxtaposition of change of seasons, relationships, emotions, etc. about moving and growing up. I thought it was a great story and talked to the artist about her work, and she told me about how she considers herself an artist instead of a writer. She attended art school and talked about how she became interested in comics then, instead of before. I thought that was interesting because she had such an effective narrative in the book.

 

Chris Ware’s panel was also interesting to me. Our class had already talked about his self-deprecating personality, which definitely came off in his interview. It was really interesting to me that although he has had such success, he was reluctant to talk about his plans for the future or his regard in the community. I think, though, that many of the artists I met or spoke to shared this demeanor and overall, I think it really helps the work. Many of the themes I noticed in the work were depression, loneliness, rejection, feeling out of place, etc. It makes sense that confident writers or artists wouldn’t be very good at conveying these feelings, so while it was strange to see someone as successful as Chris Ware, for example, putting down himself and his own work, it personifies the work as a whole and ultimately has the right effect in conveying the themes and the personal experience of the comics.

 

Julia Hanson Limerick

In my family we have a dog named Teddy

and in the morning when we’re getting ready,

he lies forlorn on the floor,

and looks towards the door,

and once we’re out the driveway he’s puked once already.