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  • Writer's pictureMereida

Pov 2: jungle boogaloo

As of 15.10.20

Soooo... Was chugging contentedly away at my project, and then i moved here and its been a bit of an intense whirlwind and im not feeling as motivated or productive as at home (probably because there's actually shit to do and people to meet here). But here's where i am:

Did this lil one-page comic trying to capture the feeling of being a tourist exploring the forest, looking up at the canopy and just experiencing these snapshots. It felt quite fragmentary and that's what this is trying to show, but honestly i hate it so i moved on.

Had an excellent and v helpful tutorial with Jonathan who suggested expanding on the Jungle Tour comic (last post) but in a Where's Wally or Chris Ware style. Really really like this idea because it fits the tourist experience perfectly: a journey through the rainforest where the people are tiny and you have to spot the wildlife just as you're struggling to spot the wildlife in real life. It would be great for representing the exciting, overwhelming aspect of tourism, being presented with so much overwhelming experience in one go and doing exactly what you're there to do - spot wildlife.

This format would also allow me to explore several different things and ways people interact with the forest, as well as interactions with locals that could then be potentially expanded upon in another piece representing a different perspective. I could also hide some of the more negative facets of tourism within the drawing i.e. littering, bad tourism practise.

Did a rough try of this which turned out surprisingly pleasing. Scale is def too small as i need to add more detail and the elements being presented and composition need to be considered carefully, but it's a good indicator of where i'm heading with this. Definitely using this as one of my three perspectives! Also coloured a photocopy which honestly slaps.

So this made me confident on one perspective (the joy and action of tourism) but i'm still keen to present the perspective of the lives of the locals so went about drawing more locals from my photos such as these embroidery ladies who sit on the iquitos promenade selling exquisite hand-embroidered cloths which often contain some sort of narrative.

A patch of the embroidery

Did this where the embroidery depicts (my impression of) daily life around the jungle which i do think has potential to be refined nicely, and i like it as the embroidery is a thing that the women do almost exclusively so would be good chance to explore the female lifestyle and perspective.

I was a bit aimless and kinda just drawing from photos to get a better feel for the place and the people.

(From the collage workshop)

Roadside stalls. Really like this aesthetically and i love drawing these but these drawings aren't trying to present any sort of perspective, except maybe that i liked observing these people in a slightly perverse way. This made me realise i do have a fascination with observing these people and presenting them in this way that makes their lives look rather lonely, and that thats something that informed my own personal tourist experience strongly.

Then had a tutorial with Marian in which we discussed the perspectives more, and she highlighted how all my perspectives can be from the tourist as i don't know any other perspective but to be the spectator, and how i could tackle the different ways people approach tourism instead. So it clicked that i wanted to find a way to illustrate the romanticisation of the locals that i myself am guilty of and played around with the idea of having zoo exhibits of the animals you'd find in the jungle as well as exhibits of the people, just as i've been viewing them through my drawing and while i travelled (am i explaining this properly??)

Then during the narrative roughs workshop I was introduced to the work of Harry Sussams and Anton van Hertbruggen and a few images of theirs sparked an idea, based off the fisherman in the boat i drew earlier (previous post) for a comic that follows him before zooming out to present him in a fish tank. Something like that. It's really late and i'm possibly still hungover so this idea might not go anywhere but i'd like to use it as my second perspective, a slightly different and maybe more or less problematic tourist experience.

Yay! 2 ideas down, 1 to go.....

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