“Tape it Back Together” – Visual Storytelling (Becky Lin)

The piece that I picked is Tape it Back Together which is also connected to this piece: 1000 Words

The best one to start with is the 1000 Words piece which is the second link mentioned above. It goes through a story which consists of a series of illustrations with some narration. It’s told in the form of a flash comic which reveals the story slide by slide and requires the reader to flip through. The flash comic’s story is also represented in another medium which is the digital painting (refer to the first link). Both are done by a digital artist called yuumei who has also composed many other beautiful stories and paintings. “Tape it Back Together” is the piece that I am going to focus on, with references to the second link “1000 Words” since they are in essence the same story but told with two different mediums. “1000 Words” tells the story of a young girl whose family is going through a divorce. Understanding that her family is on the brink of splitting in half, the young girl seeks the help of an artist so that she can draw a better picture of her family. In the story, a picture of the family drawn by the little girl gets ripped in half as a metaphor of the imminent divorce. The artist then tapes it back together and returns it to the girl to give to her parents.

The painting consists of a girl holding two sides of a drawing of her family which is ripped down the middle and roughly taped back together. A crack splits down the length of the painting and is surrounded by text which addresses the parents of the girl and tells her point of view of the divorce. There is an overall theme of things being ripped apart, broken, and split apart which falls into the story of divorce. Not only is the actual drawing, representative of the family relations, torn apart but also the sentences that are separated by the crack down the middle. Where the drawing of the family is torn in half, the girl in the middle is also torn down the middle, metaphorically ripping the child in half and hurting her while the parents on either side of the ripped drawing aren’t hurt. Repetition is very prominent in the words surrounding the cracks which adds a labored effect and tone to the words, reflective of the difficulties and burden placed on the child because of the divorce.

There are more elements in the piece that I could point out and analyze to emphasize the message of the piece(s) but I believe that the depth of the story and how it’s presented is already evident enough. I chose this piece because it utilizes symbolism and wonderfully planned out structure to present the story in just one painting. Even without reading “1000 Words” the weight of the story presented in “Tape it Back Together” still hits with full force and nothing is lost. The core of the story is conveyed very clearly and has the full depth and weight to make an impact on its audience.

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