Zoe Bell Illustration Thesis Fall 2019
Novice is a series of ten drawings combining the narrative medium of comics with abstract landscape drawing. Six original stories draw from the artist’s memories of recovery from a traumatic period of mental illness. Each story examines a stage in the post-insanity narrative in the form of a silent comic with an accompanying poem serving as the text. Themes of self-loathing, isolation, and the time-bending nature of illness are discussed leading to a fleeting moment of enlightenment. The comics are presented together on a large format page with abstract landscape elements. Recovery stages are mirrored as physical topography, treating the brain as a malleable frontier shaped by our experiences and our understanding of them. The comics, poems, and mixed-media mark exist simultaneously as different understandings of a fluid concept. All together they come closer to a representation to the nebulosity of recovery.