Cimici (Critique: Cork, Inc.)





Cork, Inc., sponsor of the International Comic/School Contest 2023, gave their critique for the entry, " Cimici ".


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Stink Bugs / Cimici

Artist: Per__art

School: TheSIGN Academy

Country/Region: Italy

Language: English




The pessimistic and surreal mix of plot made this an alluring piece.

If we knew how the protagonist felt deep down (what he really wanted to say) it would have been a little easier to understand and it would have left a deeper impression after reading.

Are these panels supposed to show where there are commonly bed bugs?


It was a bit hard to understand what you want to show, so make sure you are limiting the information (visual) to what is important to the story going forward.

(1) It looks like a lot of blood has been splattered and it was hard to understand what was going on for a moment. It would have been good to show the insect when it hit him.



The panel on the right with the large expression and the choice of colors was a brilliant way to express this scene.

Right page: Make sure that we understand that this is a flashback scene, perhaps by changing the way that you draw here.

Right page: The way that you use this entire page to show a strong emotional response is really good. This also was designed in a way that guides the gaze around, very nice.

From here on we go from a flashback to another flashback, so to make the transition more easily understandable, try changing your drawing style a bit.

In the text portion, there are a lot of figurative expressions and rhetoric, but I wanted you to express the character's true feelings more in images.

(2) It might have been better to have the panel where the protagonist is imagining the people as bed bugs a bit bigger.

Right page: The flashback sequence was very long so it weakens the connection this scene has with what actually came before. Maybe this would be improved by reminding us about the "bed bug attack" by showing a close-up of his wound.

This scene has impact being the same as the scene in the beginning.

There was a lot of long text discussing the issues before this ending, and you end with him simply being tired. It makes the reader wonder what was the message that you wanted to impart to them.


・In conclusion

I thought the idea of expressing the abstract "disgust" felt in daily life by comparing it to concrete disgust (i.e., bed bug attacks) was excellent. The rough feeling of the lines and the choice of low saturation coloring are well done in visually expressing that pessimistic mood.


On the other hand, when depicting a subtle story, too many indirect written or drawn expressions can make it difficult to see the main, larger story that you want to convey, and the reader can lose sight of (or misread) the subject of the story.

Witty expressions are your weapon, but you should periodically reread your writing from an objective point of view and ask yourself if you are making it difficult for readers to understand what you want to say most. This will make your work transform into a more powerful message.

Cork, Inc.

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