Ideas in Image Form

Spurred on by assorted bits of feedback from my tutor I’m starting a strand here to investigate the illustration as ‘Ideas in Image Form’. I’m initially interested in the distinguishing illustrations that convey and idea and looking directly at what is done in the planning or execution of the illustration in order to have that idea conveyed.

Some types of idea:

  • Story
  • Emotion
  • Fact / Statement
  • Connection
  • Opinion (not necessarily the artist’s)
  • Question
  • Historical event (or a changed historical event)
  • Interaction
  • Personality (a person’s character)

After  a page of doodles I’ve hit upon an interesting project for myself… I got to men walking which reminded me of the Paul Simon lyrics from “You can call me Al”. When I first encountered this song in the 1980’s iPhones were not available in order to Google (also not extant) the lyrics and their meaning (Thanks due here to Denise who put me right about it being “You can call me Betty” rather than “Benny”). It turns out to have an autobiographical meaning inspired by Paul Simon’s visit to Sun City in South Africa during Apartide and the subsequent entertainers boycot which Paul Simon broke. The three verses deal with his experiences in a new and unfamiliar land – the perspective of a naive foreigner having the truth revealed to him and how it put other things in context. I can see this as one illustration or a series of illustrations (like a page from a graphic novel perhaps) per verse. A Black and White theme also seems a possible idea. The current flag in Red, Blue, White, Black, Gold and Green was adopted in the 90’s for the new democracy… the flag contemporary with the Paul Simon song is a (now unfamiliar) Gold, White and Blue banded flag with three smaller flags in the centre (including the Union Flag) adopted in 1928.



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