Having looked ahead to the next section on visual storytelling, I suddenly realised that in doing this exercise I have not fully fulfilled the “reportage” brief but have moved on to a more narrative structure. Having discovered this at the end, I decided to stick with it.
I think this happened because I had been considering my critical review which will involve graphic novels, so narrative was in my mind.
I ended up not using any of the sketches I actually made on the journey although I did use the reference photos. I made these sketches at too early a stage, when my ideas were not worked out so they didn’t quite work with the angles and viewpoints I wanted to use. What I could have done, was to make the journey again and then make more sketches and make more notes. As it was I was able to find images on the internet to work from.
I thought I would make the shape of each image in the form of a train carriage, i.e a long rectangle on its side. I considered doing a concertina format or four boxes on two sides of A4.
I used a journey I have made many times, a local train journey. I had previously taken reference photos and made drawings of other passengers, knowing this exercise was coming up. The simple narrative structure was; waiting on the platform, boarding, passengers on the train, the view from the window, waiting at a station, the conductor coming round, arriving at the other end and finally meeting up with my daughter. I wanted to catch the rather monotonous, rythmical nature of the journey, quietly enjoyable without anything very exciting happening.
I made some rough sketches of my ideas but when I started drawing them out I realised that the format was too long. I was using a ratio of 3:1 but I had to alter the images to roughly 2:1. This meant using 3 images per A4 pages, which I was happy about, it was easy to lose a couple of boxes from the train.
Eventually I had 6 images I was relatively happy with. I printed them out and asked for feedback. It confirmed what I was thinking, that I needed to include some foreground people into each picture, also to alter the final image which wasn’t working.