First Person – Graphic Novel – Reflective Statement

During this field project I think that I have learnt quite a bit not only about collaboration and the area of art and design, but also about myself as a person. As my project was based on four generations of my family, this meant that I had to look back through family albums/history to obtain the information I needed.  Not only have I learnt that family values have remained the same throughout, but I’ve also found that people share strong similarities appearance wise. Which is something that I’d never thought about before. As family history has always been an interest of mine, through this project I have been able to combine art and design with something that I am interested in. I think that this has enabled me to produce an outcome which is strong.

In terms of learning about creating a graphic novel/sequence of images, I think that I have learnt a great deal particularly about how to construct a narrative. The lectures and workshops that we have done has enabled me to think in more depth about how to construct a narrative. It must have a beginning, middle and end but whether that’s shown in chronological order or not is up to the author of the narrative. They are the masters of time in this context. Furthermore, I think that the project has shown me how I can combine skills together, it doesn’t always have to be digital it can be a combination. This is something that I should continue to remember when working on future projects so that my work isn’t always the same and I’m having variety of experiments before the final outcome.

Through research in this project I think I have found some new ways of finding inspiration which I might not have thought about prior to starting this project. One of these method was through visiting an exhibition, even an exhibition which might have a vague link to topic which you are working on. I’ve learnt that you can create inspiration from something that isn’t directly linked to the project topic, and it can help you produce a strong and well thought out outcome. This is an idea for inspiration and idea development that I will take back to my subject area, drawing on my experiences that might not be a direct link to the topic.

I have also learnt how collaboration can help even when you are creating an individual outcome. Throughout the course of project, I have worked closely with Meg, who’s initial inspiration/theme for her novel was similar to mine. This has meant that we were able to bounce ideas between each other and reach new ideas that we might not have been able to create working alone. This type of collaboration I think has worked well for me as it means that I haven’t be waiting just for the tutorials, I’ve been able to gain feedback throughout the course of development stages. Having the ability to work with these collaborative ideas has given me an insight into how a studio environment might work.

At the beginning of this project I didn’t think that I was going to be able to link this back to my subject area. I was nervous about the project as I initially thought that it would mean that I needed to draw characters which is something that I know I struggle with. However, I feel that I’ve been able to think about creating the novel similar to how I would put together an editorial piece. As the project started to develop, I found that I was getting into the idea and enjoying it more than I thought I would at the start. I think through having the chance to use photographs rather than drawings meant that I was also able to link it back to my A level photography learning, where we did a lot of narrative through imagery workshops.

I feel that during the project have been able to create an experimental graphic novel, even though it’s not completed yet, I think that the concept of the narrative is different and new. Through experimenting with mixed media, I think that it has enabled me to find new avenues of ideas to venture down. Throughout all the developments I think that the initial final outcome has potential to work if the novel was to be put into production.

Overall, I think that this project has enabled me to learn about a different subject area but has also given me skills and methods that I can take back to my own area of practice and use to develop my work. The project enabled us to set new rules, rules that we might not work in. It has offered me the chance to move away from my comfort zone, move out of the creative boundaries I have set myself for my own practice.


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