Sunday, October 4, 2015

Saturday Revue October 3: 150 Days

From The Wastes Of The Great Desert

Comes A Tale For You...

In my part of America, the winter is beginning to creep in. The sky is grey, and drizzle weighs down browning leaves.

So it was a true delight to dive into a tale of far away deserts and true love, basking in the warmth and the evocative beauty of '150 Days'

This story is as vast and evocative as the deep desert, and as silent. That's right, silent. No words, no dialogue. Nothing between you, your own heart, and the art. Now that's comic making cut to the bone.
The work of  an artist who goes by the name of KnightJJ, 150 Days can be found here. It's the tale of a Chinese prince who loses his way in the desert and the kindness of a stranger who befriends him, a kindness that blossoms into something much more.

The Rating

Pure beauty. Start to finish.

The Raves

To begin with, I have to tip my hat to the creator: they've given us a GLBT story that is a TRUE romance. Not a series of angsty guilt trips, but A ROMANCE. A romance being the gentle falling in love of two beautiful souls, the decision to stick together through thick and thin. The sweetness of early infatuation and the deep, abiding comfort of lasting love as two people help eachother through life's daily mundane challanges. There's romance in doing the dishes together. That's a romance. And '150 Days' is a true romance. KnightJJ, THANK YOU.
Stylistically, '150 Days' follows in the footsteps of  'The Rabbi's Cat'; at first glance, the art doesn't look impressive, but the longer you look at it, the more you realize its grasp of artistic style and the skill in making such art look casually drawn. 
The creator has used  acrylic, markers and ink to create a loose, evocative style that nonetheless draws you in, giving you a tasted of another time and place. In some ways, the stylistic choice adds to the ability of the work to evoke rather than distracting from it; it is an impressionist painting that asks you to feel rather than to think. It bypasses technical details to arrow straight for the heart. And it hits it. In scene after scene, you feel that you are there, sitting with our characters. The creator has used their media to great effect;  much of the emotional strength of the piece is conveyed through organic texturing in scenes, giving us an almost tactile reading experience. Color choices really intensify the emotional content of scenes.
Add that to the fact that everything in this story must be shown through gesture, expression and body language, and you realize how talented KnightJJ really is. Without words, the reader is drawn into this tender, evocative and loving tale of two young men finding out who they truly are, and who they truly love.
Beyond the artistic skill, the cultural acumen also deserves mention. KnightJJ has done their homework!
Clothing, culture, architecture and art styles have all been well-researched before being well rendered in '150 Days'. 
Just take a look at this depiction of a painting.

Nailed. It.

The Razzes

My only complaint is that, at times, the artist throws in 'chibi moments' for comedic affect, and to me, that throws off the flow of the story and breaks the stylistic spell. You don't need chibis in a story this evocative. Stick with the good stuff.

The Revue

When this is printed, I will buy it and hug it on a regular basis. This story touches a place in my heart. I hope it will do the same for you.

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