Kim Luster’s The Good Walker webcomic is what inspired me to write this newspost about dreams.
Depicting a character’s dreams in a story is a very powerful and useful tool! Especially when it comes to visual narratives, such as webcomics and movies, a dream sequence can communicate to the audience things that for a range of reasons cannot be shown differently.
For example, a character that puts a tough façade and always appears strong and unwavering, can have a dream sequence (like a nightmare) so the audience can experience that character’s inner fears and worries that he/she does not behaviorally depict as part of his/her personality.
A dream will always be a peek into the character’s psyche. Even when it involves a flashback (i.e. a memory), the way something is remembered always gives the audience an idea of what shaped, how, or why a character’s personality and/or behavior. Memories that do make it into dreams are always important to the dreamer in some way, even if they appear innocuous.
The way a dream is illustrated (in webcomics or movies) is also very important. The environment’s style (very dark, very desaturated, very angular, very light, very undefined, realistic, looming, etc) is the first hint about how the character dreaming feels about what is going to take place in the dream. The angles and appearance of the actors in the dream also contribute to the level of intimidation or emotionality within it.
The most efficient way to use the dream sequence is to offer the audience insights into characters, situations or what is to come (foreshadowing). Especially because no rules apply for dreams. The symbolism and the surreal can break any and all the rules and format of the comic that holds for the non-dream scenes, giving the audience a jolt among other things.
But for the love of God, unless you’ve properly built up for it and given the audience due hints, don’t make a huge part of your story “just a dream”, returning the plot back to square one. And even worse, don’t do it to your climax.
Have you used dream sequences in your comic?
Tantz_Aerine at 12:00AM, Dec. 9, 2017
©2011 WOWIO, Inc. All Rights Reserved Google+