Iconography Part 5 - Visual Vocabulary of Graphic Novels, Comic Books and Comic Strips
There are different categories of iconography used in comics. Today we are going to discuss:
Emotions and expressions of mental state
First, we have emanata.
Emanata - 1. Any lines indicating the emergence of a substance, such as steam blowing from a bull's nostrils, which suggest anger and about to charge. 2. What emerges from the character's head such as musical notes, hearts or stars that in intense situations can form a halo around a head.
Hovering above head
! - surprise
? - curiosity, questioning
Little hearts emanating as a character gazes in adoration - love, infatuation, desire, falling in love
Circling birds/stars - wooziness, dizziness, partial consciousness, pain (usually the result of contact between entities )
Doozex - Zzzz - sleep
Dark Scribble - bad mood (somewhat tornado shaped)
Curly lines, tornado or corkscrew line - indicates frustration
Black cloud (with lightning) - depressed or out of luck
Skull and crossbones - avarice, wanting someone dead
Light bulb - an idea, inspiration Lightning bolt – anger, rage
Plewds: The scattering of liquid drops from the head indicating working hard, stressed, fear, cold sweat, anxiety, panic. worried, nervous, frustration or anger.
Squeans: small asterisk-like bursts or circles that signify nausea, intoxication, dizziness or sickness. Usually occurring in threes.
Spurl - spiral above the head to indicate unconsciousness, usually due to being knocked out.
knife or dagger from eye - hate
teardrops - crying
Scribble (or red) on cheeks - embarassment
Next we have oculama.
Oculama - The cartoon science of substitutions for eyes to convey an expression
Hearts - love, infatuation, sexual desire Dollars $ - greed, desire for money
Spirals – mesmerized, hypnotized
Crottles - the Xs used to replace the eyes of an unconscious figure and often indicating death.
to be continued…