Published on September 15, 2014
Brief History of Comic Visual Arts
BRIEF HISTORY OF COMICS The history of comics has followed different paths in different parts of the world. It can be traced back to early precursors such as Trajan's Column, in Rome, Egyptian hieroglyphs and the Bayeux Tapestry and other medieval tapestries. Trajan´s column. 113 AD. Is a roman triumphal column in Rome, Italy, that commemorates Roman emperor Trajan ´s victory in the Dacian wars. Hieroglyphs. Are the characters of the ancient Egyptian writing system. The Bayeux Tapestry is an embroidered cloth—not an actual tapestry, which depicts the events leading up to the Norman conquest of England concerning William, Duke of Normandy, and Harold, Earl of Wessex, later King of England, and culminating in the Battle of Hastings. It was made in England in the 1070s.
These images (Trajan´s column, hieroglyphics, tapestries…) are early surviving examples of narrative told trough sequential pictures. These works combines sequential images and words to tell a story. Its intentions were to communicate. However, these works did not travel to the reader; it took the invention of modern printing techniques to bring the form to a wide audience and become a mass medium. The invention of the printing press, allowing movable type, established a separation between images and words, the two requiring different methods in order to be reproduced. Early printed material was concentrated on religious subjects, but through the 17th and 18th centuries, they began to reflect aspects of political and social life, and also started to satirize and caricature. It was also during this period that the speech bubble was developed as a means of attributing dialogue. A page by Rodolphe Töpffer, whose work is considered influential in shaping the comics form. Rodolphe Töpffer, a francophone Swiss artist, was a key figure in the early part of the 19th century. Though speech bubbles lost popularity during the middle 19th century, Töpffer's sequentially illustrated stories, with text compartmentalized below images, were reprinted throughout Europe and the United States. The lack of copyright laws at the time meant that pirated editions proliferated, and translated versions created a market on both continents for similar works.
The Glasgow Looking Glass, published in 1826, was arguably the first comic strip. A satirical publication, later known as The Northern Looking Glass, that lampooned the fashions and politics of the times. It had all of the elements that make up the modern comic, including pictures with captions that display a continuous narrative given often in installments, and the use of speech bubbles, satire and caricature. In 1845, the satirical drawings, which regularly appeared in newspapers and magazines, gained a name: cartoons. Many popular magazines included cartoons, in Europe as in United States.
20th CENTURY AND THE MASS MEDIA During the 1920s and 1930s the industry is booming and prosperity. The market for comic anthologies in Britain began to target children through juvenile humor, with The Dandy and The Beano. In Belgium, Hergé created The Tintin´s adventures, a newspaper strip on a comic supplement; this was successfully collected in a bound album and a new market was created for such works. During the same period in the United States, we can see newspaper strips expand their subject matter beyond humour, with action, adventure and mystery strips.
• Soon, a market for such comic books appeared. In 1938 Action Comics launched Superman. • The popularity of the character swiftly enshrined the superhero as the defining genre of American comics. The genre lost popularity in the 1950s but re-established its domination from the 1960s until the late 20th century.
What is known as the golden age in America goes from 1938-1956. In those ages appeared heroes like Superman, Batman and the first heroine, Wonderwoman.
• In Japan, a country with an ancient tradition of illustration and whose writing system was evolved from pictures, comics were hugely popular. Osamu Tezuka, was an important Japanese comic creator who developed a filmic style, heavily influenced by the Disney animations of the time. Contemporary comic and manga films.
Sir Ernst Gombrich (an art historian) wrote in 1972 that Töpffer had evolved a new pictorial language, an abbreviated art style, which allowed the audience to fill in gaps their imagination.
Contemporary comic • Nowadays, the comic is an important creative resource, widely used by many artists worldwide. Currently we have countless technical resources to perform sophisticated creations, by using different tools and styles. • The comic is a way to enjoy drawing, literature, film, graphic novel ...
Bibliografía / Bibliography: BASIC BIBLIOGRAPHY ABOUT COMIC (In Spanish) THEORY AND COMIC LENGUAGE • EISNER, Will. El cómic y el arte secuencial. Barcelona, Norma. -La narración gráfica. Barcelona, Norma. GARCÍA, Sergio. Anatomía de una historieta. Madrid, Sinsentido, 2004. GASCA, Luis y GUBERN, Roman, El discurso del cómic, Madrid, Cátedra, 1991. • -Diccionario de onomatopeyas del cómic, Cátedra, Madrid, , 2008. • GUBERN, Roman. El lenguaje de los cómics. Barcelona, Península, 1972. • McCLOUD, Scott. Entender el cómic, El arte invisible, Bilbao, Astiberri, 2005. -Hacer cómics: secretos narrativos del cómic, el manga y la novela gráfica, • Bilbao, Astiberri, 2007. BIBLIOGRAPHY ABOUT THE COMIC HISTORY. SCHOOLS, GENRES AND AUTHORS • EISNER, Will, Shop talk. Conversaciones con Will Eisner, Barcelona, Norma, 2005. EISNER, Will y MILLER, Frank, Eisner/Miller, Barcelona, Norma, 2006. GUIRAL, Antonio (coord.), Una historia de los cómics (12 vols. algunos pendientes de publicación), Girona, Panini España, 2007–? VVAA, Historia de los cómics. 4 vols., Barcelona, Toutain Editor, 1982.
HOW TO CREATE A COMIC: • Anything you have in your mind can be expressed with the help of a comic strip. It is another way of communication. • There is a plot, and some characters you should define first. • There is a lot of freedom when we are creating the plot. Time can be past, present or future. And space can be real or imaginary. Elements: • Strip pages: It has to do with the sequence you want to tell. • Framing: (The same as in photography) • CLOSE UP: primer plano. The face of a character. • EXTREME CLOSE UP. (Details). Elements, eyes, flower… • MEDIUM CLOSE UP: You can appreciate the expression. • MID SHOT: You show the attitude. • WIDE SHOT: You see the character and the action. • VERY WIDE SHOT: When you want to show more than one character. • EXTREME WIDE SHOT: It shows the place where it is happening. • SPEECH BALLONS: Dialogues. • GESTURES AND MOVEMENT, PROCESS IN A COMIC ( pages 70 – 71 book)
-BOOM: Explosión. Auge, prosperidad. -BOUND: Atado, cubierta dura, tapa dura. -SWIFTLY (Adv): Rápidamente, velozmente, raudamente. -PATHS: Vereda, camino, ruta, trayectoria. -DEPICTS: Representar -LEAD UP: Lead (sb) to, guiar, dirigir… -MASS MEDIA: Medios comunicación -LACK OF: Carecer, falta de… -TARGET: Meta, propósito, objetivo, goal, objetive. -ENSHRINED: ENSHRINE Consagrar -TO FILL IN GAPS: Llenar vacíos, huecos… -SHAPING: Dar forma, modelar. -EVOLVE: Desarrollarse, evolucionar. -WIDE SHOT: Plano general. -FRAMING: Marco, composición. -CLOSE UP: Primer plano, de cerca, detallado. - TO TRACE BACK: Rastrear el origen - TAPESTRY: Tapiz - HIEROGLYPH, HIEROGLYPHIC: Jeroglíficos - EMBROIDERED: Bordado. To embroider: Bordar. - EARL: Conde - TACKLE: Abordar - PRINTING PRESS: Imprenta, impresora. - INSTALLMENT: Capítulo, episodio, entrega, plazo - ARGUABLY (Adv): Open to debate. Poder decir. - STRIP: Tira (comic strip) - LAMPOON: Sátira, parodia - TO LAMPOON: Satirizar, burlarse de… - MAKE UP: Inventar, constituir, preparar, formar, hacer las paces (make up with sb), make-up: cosmetics, maquillaje. - SPEECH BUBBLE: Globo de diálogo, bocadillo. - FALL OUT OF FAVOUR: To lose popularity - FURTHER: Más a fondo, más lejos, impulsar, promover, promote, advance.
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