Experiment 1 — Using Panel Length for Timing

The first fragment involves two women approaching the counter as a “unit”. The two customers preparations to pay are not exactly in sync, Customer 1 (on the right) is ahead of Customer 2 in preparing her money for paying. On opening up her purse, Customer 1 has found a ticket ahead of the finding cash and remarks on this.

I transcribed this same fragment a number of times, trying out slight adjustments with the size of panels, using more formal typefaces and shifting representation of speech (e.g. with and without bubbles). In the first experiment, the panel widths are varied to provide a sense of the timing of these actions. The third panel, tenth panel, thirteenth and fourteenth panels are noticeably shorter to show actions with brief durations of time.

While the main focus was panel widths there are other features to note. The caption box is used to formulate the non-verbal actions – which is a common convention in graphic transcripts. The typeface is shifted to from Comic Life’s standard typeface “Lint McCree International” to “League Gothic”. The shift in typeface a move away from the “fun” to the “documentary”. Overlapping talk is marked with overlapping speech bubbles – which indicates that overlapping happened, but not when it happened.



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