depression comix #328

Music has helped me deal with a lot of problems in my life. I listen to what a lot of people call “depressing” music, but that so-called “depressing” music is often a similar voice that I can relate to during those times. The singer feels the same way I do. I’m not alone.

For this strip, I wanted to do something different. I added an extra “fifth” panel which I did a year before. I like these fifth panels because they allow me to stretch out a bit and draw a panel on a single piece of paper, and add a little depth to the story. I liked the image of these two singing together, two friends sharing their pain in a positive way. It took a few sketches to get it right, and a few tries to get which Leonard Cohen lyric to use, but it came out OK (I first used lyrics from “Chelsea Hotel #2” – “We are ugly but we have the music.”, which is what apparently Janis Joplin said to Leonard Cohen, but didn’t work without context so I switched to lyrics from “Joan of Arc”)

Another idea I had was a playlist with which readers could vote to make a playlist of depressing music that they liked. When this went live, I realized that readers could not enter their own songs to vote on, making it kind of useless. So for the first hour of the comic strip going up, I scrambled to find a replacement, which I did — Spotify. This ended up being a better idea because readers could actually listen to the songs people suggest, and it would be a comminity thing. Unfortunately, with some solutions, more problems pop up — I had to enter the songs into Spotify manually, and many songs were not licensed for use in Japan, and people ended up sending me long lists. It took me a long time to search for and enter all the songs, and people are STILL sending me suggestions though I closed that off long ago.

It was a great thing to do for the comic, and something that made the one comic a little more special. I should do these kind of things more often, they really add to the experience of reading all these monochromatic comics.

Read here ->

1 comment

    This strip was perfect. “It’s like listening to someone who understands” is such a universal feeling. There is really no better way of expressing the comfort provided by music. The fifth panel really completes the strip. As for your description of depcom as being monochromatic, I think that is another way of expressing the experience. When one is in the depths of depression the world is drained of color and everything feels like grayscale. It may not have been intentional, but the lack of color is one of the little details that make depcom so special. The playlist is a great idea. It helps make the strip more of a shared experience. There were many songs I was familiar with, even if they were not my style, but it was the songs I wasn’t familiar with that really helped connect with the other readers. I have some new music to help with those dark days. Your ability to make depression understandable to others and make those of us suffering feel less alone is an exceptional talent. I can’t tell you how glad I am to have found your site.

    FML | 1 year ago Reply

Leave a Reply