Freestyle Academy proudly presents

The Shuffling Shadow: A Junior Visual Narrative Comic by Gabriela Wilde (2017)

Click to read Artist Statement
Throughout the process of making "The Shuffling Shadow," I strengthened my abilities in using the Adobe program, Illustrator. At first, it was hard to create the look I wanted to achieve, but after a few times of practice, I began to notice myself exponentially mastering all of the functions of Illustrator, and using them effectively. For example, in the beginning, I traced all of my shapes, and I soon found out that when I went back to fill them in, I couldn’t! I figured out that I wouldn’t be able to color in an object if the shape wasn’t closed properly, so I had to go back and re-create all of my objects trying different methods. After messing around with the tools for a while, I found a way to make it look the way I imagined.

As for the way I see other people’s work now, I can fully understand the load of effort that gets put behind the end product. I appreciate every purposeful detail and every complex shape, knowing that it must have taken a while with the Pen Tool. I especially love how everyone’s style is so unique, which makes each comic really interesting to look at.

If I could change any part of my comic, I would make the presence of the mysterious shadow more omnipresent, dark, and overall frightening by making it bigger and using vignette effects on the panels in which it is included, as well as showing even more of my character’s emotion in the rising action sequence. As well as adding to the emotions, I would like to include a greater variety of colors (and I would not make green the dominant one).

I am most proud of the mastery I gained in the program Illustrator. What used to be challenging and slow for me quickly became comfortable and efficient. It’s great to see how the process of drawing my comic on graph paper is transferred onto an art board, and then turned into a digital piece that can be embellished and manipulated with a few clicks of some buttons.
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