Before I started coding I made memes. In today’s world, memes are the best way of getting multiple ideas across at once with minimal words or pictures—I often struggle with getting my point across.
In addition, I wanted to make the piece about irony and my life and how well the two coexist. Irony is not something that can be easily described (at least for me), especially when referring to one’s own life. in my life (that I have always taken much joy in). Going back to the reading thing, I would still incorporate that because if you think about it falling in love with reading through such a controversial medium…
…is ironic. The fact that I only read novels for seven years afterwards is even more ironic. And the fact that I have once again defected to comics (and similar mediums) is a kind of beautiful justice.
Second Idea: Reading Pictures
After I abandoned memes and irony I wanted the piece to house all the different ways I read pictures. For a very long time reading pictures, watching movies, or simply avoiding written words at all costs, was a vital part of my childhood. I started collecting and editing pictures of book covers and illustrations that had an immense impact on me before I learned to love reading.
Final Idea: My Ironic Relationship with Reading
I do not remember or know why someone bought me The Illustrated World Encyclopedia of Marine Fishes & Sea Creatures by Derek Hall and Amy-Jane Beer. In addition to my dislike of reading from age 4-7 I was a mostly mute, autistic girl with Nicktoon and TV-commercial inspired echolalia. But the illustrations were very lovely and I enjoyed staring at them endlessly, naming them and making stories for them, etc.
Things changed then I was eleven. Diary of a Wimpy Kid and a small copy of Baby Mouse Queen of the World had me fall in love with reading. Something about those stories made me forget how hard reading was as an action long enough to delve into the story. A year later my middle school teacher had us read The Lightening Thief: Percy Jackson and the Olympians by Rick Riordan. It was first time I had ever intentionally challenged direct orders from a teacher. The rule was: “don’t read ahead.”
After I fell in love with reading my interactions with images were often restricted to the illustrated chapters from Harry Potter, TV, computer games, and the digital book covers of Twilight fan fiction made in the Mac Application: Preview.
Senior year of high school scared me away from reading: Tess of the d’Urbivilles by Thomas Hardy and Franz Kafka’s Metamorphosis were traumatic for me—I ran to video games, anime, manga and the occasional memoir. I try to present this in the piece by putting pictures of anime and videogames alongside the book art. Though I do not like reading (again) I wanted to display their importance. I hope that the piece can stand on its own because I know that a lot of this background could not be captured in it.