The Structure and Organisation of Comics

Design and composition are two formal elements in which I am quite interested in. From my point of view, both hold a certain beauty to them. I can feel this sensation of satisfaction when things just… fit. It seems to me, that once something – it does not matter what , be it in art or might it be within construction work –  fits into something bigger, is easier to catch and understand.
So for me, it is not really a surprise that I am drawn to the structure of comics. However, I can not call me a big follower of the medium as it exists (sure there are one or two publications but the medium, in general, is not really catching me), but the way they are the layout. The grid – and here we come to my main point – is a key point within this medium. There are several of different ways to layout a comic but it ends always with the same result: a grid (the spaces between frames – the gutter) – which gives meaning to the story. The the  writer gives the story a flow, so tha the reader can easily jump from one frame to the following one. Another thing that this structure makes possible is the reading between the lines, or frames in this case. As it is with every written piece the case, it is the same for comics, we interpret in the gaps. The comic book author Scott McCloud calls this theory ‘closure’ and it is describing exactly this phenomena of interpreting and guessing even when we cannot see if it is actually there, or actually happening (see image) – we are filling the gaps with or own pictures. However, this process can be just ensured when the reader actually understands the flow of the comic which is the task of the grid.



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