An everyday story of leftwing folk

Monday, 20 June 2011

Great slapstick moments

I don't know if I'm any more accident-prone than the next person. My wife thinks I am. I am a man who has managed to step on a rake so that it cracks me on the head. I've also really slipped on a banana skin. I'm the only person I know who has done that. The funniest bit about that last one was that as I lay there on my back in the pouring rain, I was convinced it was dog muck. And I was now lying in it.

Anyway. Yesterday I managed to stick a spade through a wasps nest in the garden. Two of them had stung me on the wrist before I knew anything, and I was instantly surrounded by a swarm. I fled to the house and sprayed my wrist with Waspeze. I then became aware of buzzing coming from behind my ear and I could feel something in my hair at the back of my neck. "I can't see anything", says my wife from a safe distance. By now I was whimpering like a dog that knows its going to be beaten. So my wife sprayed my head with fly killer. "It's going to be so pleased with that," I thought, and asked for a comb. My wife was still sceptical until we managed to comb out the dying beast. I had a headache for the rest of the day. Courtesy of the fly spray, I guess.

I think this episode tells me I need a haircut. Though if I had short hair yesterday, the little bugger will have stung me on the head and got away with it.

Wednesday, 15 June 2011

Making Pages

Having been converting some of these stories for the page in parallel with producing the latest on-screen episodes, I've been quite struck by the differences. Pages proper have a quite different rhythm.

Each collection of frames on a page have to add up to a kind of whole together. You have to think about whether the page "ends" or whether it sets up the next page, and how the two halves of a double page spread work together. There's also the rhythm that's set up by the number and size of frames on each page. Maybe a bit like notes in a bar in music - is the page made up of a lot of crotchets, or a single breve?

The slideshow versions on the other hand are maybe closer to anime. You can occasionally fake up a frame to seem narrower, or skewed in some way, but you're essentially stuck with the regular landscape format. The rhythm is also much more staccato, and it's much harder to alter the pace. Having more words per page is probably the most sure-fire way of slowing the reader down, I think. Or maybe having an image that's quite hard to read. Though I've not really tried that sort of thing much. Probably the Zee-without-her-glasses-on scene in the epilogue to Reaching the LEARNER is the closest I've got. The repeated frames in the epilogue to Up close.. was another attempt. Making the reader work harder to move on.

Anyway, that's about the sum of these reflections so far...

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Policy Police: Return of the repossessed #5

The new one hits the streets at last!

It's been a bit of a mad dash this month cuz I dedicated time to getting the book sorted. Also this was an episode I found very hard to get started on. But once I got beyond the first frame I really enjoyed doing it. Then I deleted the first frame by mistake and had to redo it. Humph.

The second half of this episode is inspired by the boiling pit of irrationality that has been aroused by the current administration. Bit nostalgic, really. Very 1970s. For some people its a heady cocktail of the personal, the political, the painful and all manner of other things beginning with P. All bundled up together.