Christopher Adams is an illustrator who has work in Don’t Call Me Honney, a show I’ve curated on my newly-launched eyra online illustration gallery. (You can view the entire show here.) Christopher was nice enough to give me a copy of his comic, Period, which I recently finished reading.
Period is a book bound by tan paper with the title and author written in pencil, so delicate that you might miss it upon a first glance.
Casually flipping through Period, I was immediately struck by the way Christopher formatted the panels of his comic. You would generally think of a comic as having 4, 6, or 8 panels on a page. Not the case here. Some single pages have as many as 32 panels on them.
The pacing is set by the panels — both what’s in them and how they are laid out. I mentioned that single pages are comprised of 32 panels. Time doesn’t pass quickly; instead, Christopher uses them to zoom in, pan out, and really set the scene for what’s taking place. At times, it felt like I was looking at a film strip.He’s able to pull my eye quickly across and down a page, despite how detailed his drawings are. I read through the book a few times to make sure I wasn’t missing anything.
Period contains vignettes. It opens up with us looking at the sea, making us feel small. We then delve into the lives of a family, a telephone company employee, and guys hanging out playing with electric toy cars. The details documented are minuscule, juxtaposed with moments that remind us just how BIG things, important things, are happening in our world. But, we’re often so bogged down with relationships, work, and our own lives to contemplate what’s really going on outside of our front door. Christopher ends Period in a similar way of which it began. Leaving with a desolate landscape, the mountains. The final page is a combat drone flying over them, a symbol for war and general political unrest.