Play to rehearse

Dawson, Beth ORCID logoORCID: (2015) Play to rehearse. [Artefact]


The short graphic story, Play To Rehearse, narrates an account of the transitional experience between childhood ideals and adult realities. It is practical research contributing to the knowledge of how to communicate intimate emotional accounts through illustrated fictionalised stories. The comic looks to innovate approaches within the medium by partnering a ‘confessional’ (M.L Rosenthal, 1959) poetic style of writing with stylised sequential imagery to explore original methods for sharing and visualising complex psychological or emotive states. This piece in particular explores the concept of communicating authentically versus through a performed persona of oneself and ultimately plays with the notion of truth within the ‘confessional narrative’ genre. It does so through an exploration of character creation in comics and questions how the true narrator of the comic can be masked by using a visual representation of someone ‘acting’ a part instead. In doing this, the comic intends to challenge perceptions of the authorial voice within the confessional/biographical comic genre. The story contributes to a body of contemporary comic work exploring and evolving sequential illustrative practice through unpicking the structuring and creation of comics and the conventions within this field. Rigourous process has been used to validate the significance of the piece through its selection via juried panel for international exhibition and with this comic, the author is one of only a few women selected for exhibition at Salon Stripa, International Comics Festival 2015 in Serbia. The comic was also exhibited in Leeds City Library’s Art Library exhibition space as part of F= Presents “Festival Of The Body” exhibition, 2016.

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