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 A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900

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Priscilla
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptySat 14 Mar 2020, 17:50

You cannot be more categorising than calling a woman a feminist.  Quibble nearly done - wordly wise women are the most feminist I have met - just go about it in a more delicious way.
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nordmann
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptySun 15 Mar 2020, 08:02

@Sylvain wrote:

Josie leaving in cohabitation is not crucial to the plot. However, I would like to explore this further, by taking the reasoning backward: suppose Josie actually lives in cohabitation shortly after she comes back to France (remember she is partially French), what would that say about her? Is there a plausible social environment (feminists? anarchists? utopians?) where that could happen?

Of course there is - Montmartre, in 1900 probably the most renowned (and longest in existence) urban concentration of "Bohemian" anti-bourgeois sentiment on the planet. An almost self-contained society of cheap accommodation, alternative lifestyle, fluid morality, independent thinkers, literary and artistic mavericks, and just about all the other ingredients you could wish for in providing an environment in which a young mentally fragile kick-ass Russian aristocratic Native American Ninja Cowboy of female persuasion might fit right in, no questions asked, whether in a sexual relationship (or several) or not. To get "in" to such a society, which was cliquish in its own way, of course required someone already there to "introduce" one (some bourgeois sensibilities applied, then just as now, when middle class people play at being gypsies), but this can be easily accommodated in the story. It can be an old acquaintance, the lover himself, or even the more satisfyingly dramatic contrivance of a chance encounter within the story that gives her and whoever else is on this adventure with her the "in" that she and the story requires. Once established as being based among the "Bohémiens" then suddenly huge opportunities are presented to you, the author, to describe unconventional or even anachronistic behaviour and events that stand more chance of passing any "historical veracity" test. And just think of the opportunity for "guest appearances" in the story from actual residents of the period!

I'm not sure what your point is about "concubinage". While I well understand the concept as it applied in turn of the century Paris, I do not think it would help your story for Josie & Co to be hoping to "blend in" with such obviously bourgeois middle class society, just so their cohabitation might go unremarked upon by those around them. In all other respects she appears to be anything but a middle class bourgeois person (the Ninja Cowboy outfit sort of gives it away), so I reckon she'd be better off seeking anonymity and ability to melt in to the background in a place where such obviously hypocritical and extremely mannered conventions as "concubinage" had already largely been rejected.
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Sylvain
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptySun 15 Mar 2020, 08:50

> In all other respects she appears to be anything but a middle class bourgeois person

Absolutely, that's the issue. I read about Severine (see here and here), a famous reporter of that time, who also had a restless sentimental life. Those people are not only middle class bourgeois, but also artists or intellectuals. Josie left school at 16 to live a difficult life. It doesn't fit.

What I don't want is for Josie to be a lone wolf. I would prefer she was normally socialized. In the US, I imagine she either lived on the fringes of society, or spent time with the working class (we can even imagine she was briefly involved with trade unions, as a reaction against her father status). When back in Paris, who does she naturally connect to? Hence my initial idea of concubinage with a worker. I will think about it more.
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nordmann
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptySun 15 Mar 2020, 09:02

Exactly - so base her in Montmarte. One doesn't have to be an "intellectual" or "artist" to blend in there. Take a look at photographs from the period. A hippy commune or hotbed of gitane-smoking Cruella deVilles it most certainly wasn't. However the odd ninja jaunt from there might make more sense, as would living in sin (whether as a concubine or not). Just saying ... since you have constructed such an unlikely person then the less conventional a milieu you place her in the more you might be able get away with presenting such an impossible person from within at least a nearly credible context.
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Temperance
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptySun 15 Mar 2020, 09:11

Ah - Montmartre - spot on, nordmann. Some graphically useful (?) details in this Guardian article?



Picasso, Matisse and Friends, Montmartre 1900



 ...attributes this blazing palette to the liberties of Parisian life. When they arrived in the city in 1900, Picasso and his gang of Catalan cronies were scandalised by its gaudy carnality. Back in Barcelona, prostitutes discreetly received clients behind closed doors, but on the hill of Montmartre – traditionally regarded as the mons veneris of Paris, despite the presence of nunneries and the bleached basilica of Sacré Coeur – hookers circulated freely as they flaunted painted bodies, "their hair dyed black as coal, their cheeks rouged the colour of poppies".
In the sooty murk of the cabarets Picasso and his friends frequented, paint was the only source of light. The filthiest of these dens was the Lapin Agile, "so dirty that people could barely see"; rather than cleaning up, the proprietor commissioned his patrons to paint the walls, and paid them with cocktails concocted from mint-green Pernod, and pomegranate-red grenadine. Colours, served in this form, could make you drunk...
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Temperance
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptySun 15 Mar 2020, 10:54

@Priscilla wrote:
You cannot be more categorising than calling a woman a feminist.  Quibble nearly done - wordly wise women are the most feminist I have met - just go about it in a more delicious way.

I wonder how "feminism" would have gone down amongst "les grues" of Montmartre? Hollow laughter perhaps, as when our  American Duchess wrote "empowering" messages on bananas for the similar ladies here?
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nordmann
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptySun 15 Mar 2020, 12:34

Yes, it's best to drop the whole notion of "feminism" for women of the period who nowadays would be held up as exemplars of the ideology. The term as it is used today implies an advocacy of equal rights and adoption of a behaviour designed to assert these, or even achieve these. In 1900 a strong willed woman convinced of her own innate equality still had to operate within an extremely restrictive patriarchal society in which achievement of liberties and rights enjoyed by men involved a hell of a lot more intellect and cunning than her modern counterpart requires. In fact had she behaved even remotely like a modern "feminist", even without straying into more militant versions, she would almost certainly have risked ostracisation or worse, the result being the opposite to what she had intended to achieve for herself. Priscilla's "worldly wisdom" was the best mindset in which to operate, and the more effectively she could dupe those around her, especially men, to think she was conforming while still making headway in achieving her goals, the better.

What little we can discern about Josie, given her rather unique and confused background and her willingness to adopt extreme violence in achieving her own goals, suggests she would have been more akin to the more extreme end of the suffragette movement that popped up a little later. It is worth noting however that when lists of "radically feminist" paragons from the period are trotted out these days they contain very few such extremists, and in fact quite a lot of people who publicly condemned such extremism knowing that the backlash which it provoked endangered the chances of success for women who adopted the more traditional "softly softly catchy monkey" approach. If one could pull off being "acceptably eccentric" without too much social approbation then one had a fair chance of success. The moment the others all took you seriously you were well on the way to being shot down in flames.

But again we're overthinking here (or at least I certainly am). It represents just another contradiction in Josie's character that might simply be best left unexamined for the sake of the story. Which is all the more reason to move her at least to Montmartre where she could be among the nearest thing the epoch produced to like-minded people in European society of the day, or at least people who might be more accepting of her contradictions and worrying mental tendencies than conventional society.
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Sylvain
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyMon 16 Mar 2020, 11:30

I have given up on making Josie a "feminist", who would have social life as soon as she arrives in France (including a lover). She'll be a lone wolf, I can't see any other way.

However, I want to keep the "feminist" part, and the Montmartre idea would be a nice plus. Consequently, I'd like to use another character to embody this dimension. 

My initial plot included a secondary character, Joseph Vaucanson, a journalist who would help Josie and Eugène from time to time (coming and going at the least expected time). I would like to turn him into a woman, Severine Vaucanson, and promote her to a more important role. More on this in a moment.
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Sylvain
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyMon 16 Mar 2020, 12:53

So Séverine (or Marguerite?) Vaucanson would be a worldly-wise woman (thanks Priscilla), a mix between actual French journalists Séverine and Marguerite Durand (for the feminist part) and fictional character Rouletabille (for the detective part).

As a funny ingredient, and following what Nordmann said earlier about Chaperonage, maybe she could go with a younger, blindly loyal and obedient male servant, who she would sometimes conveniently present as her husband.

She could be close to Montmartre artistic world.
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nordmann
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyMon 16 Mar 2020, 13:18

This journalist is already beginning to sound a much more credible and interesting person than our cowgal-ninja friend.

I'm still finding it hard to reconcile Josie's "fragility" with her obviously psychopathic tendencies, not to mention her amazingly rich and varied background that required so much fortitude to get through and which could not have failed to toughen her up in every sense (and I'm not referring to her native American ninja skills).
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Sylvain
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyMon 16 Mar 2020, 13:42

> I'm still finding it hard to reconcile Josie's "fragility" with her obviously psychopathic tendencies

"Fragile" is not precise enough. Consider "depressive", "broken", "pathologically obsessed". She's an abandoned girl turned rock and coming back for revenge. I admit it's a bit cliché, which I will try to compensate by a more elaborate version of the "abandoned" part.

Maybe it would be good to set this up from the start. So I'm considering changing the opening scene. Josie would walk in Neuilly's Fête, introspecting, and considering how incompatible her mood is with the party. There might be romantic poems about this kind of contrast. Such a poem could be included in the novel.


Last edited by Sylvain on Mon 16 Mar 2020, 15:11; edited 1 time in total
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nordmann
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyMon 16 Mar 2020, 13:56

Abandoned? That can mean anything and everything. Abandoned by a lover? By an authority figure? By friends? By society? And if she's already made it through native American ninja training etc, which would have surely toughened her up considerably given its diametric opposition to everything she had been taught to expect from life as a youngster, why does this even bother her anyway?
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Sylvain
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyMon 16 Mar 2020, 14:33

> Abandoned?

Abandoned by her parents.
There is a family tragedy here, which is the base of the whole plot (it also explains Bennett's doings). I didn't write about it, in order to limit the amount of text to read for new participants. But I get many questions on this, so I guess I'll need to.

> And if she's already made it through native American ninja training

This is still to be designed. The way I see it is that she was in the middle of the latest native American crushing. So, while it definitely toughened her up physically, it did little to heal her inside, maybe even the opposite.
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nordmann
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyMon 16 Mar 2020, 15:21

Ok. Witness to a tragedy inflicted on people in whom she was emotionally invested would certainly add to the "generally pissed off" mentality, I agree. And I'll take you at your word that the Bennett guy is a total dick and needs liquidation, though it better be something really heinous he's done that a mere arrest wouldn't solve for Josie to come across sympathetically to the reader. Murder has to be presented, explained, and understood as an absolutely last resort for the girl or else you risk having to keep coming back to this incredibly psychopathic part of her character throughout the rest of her interactions with others without her looking like a cliched character. Or worse, suddenly switching her character back and forth when not engaged in achieving that goal, which would certainly ruin her credibility completely.
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Priscilla
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyMon 16 Mar 2020, 15:47

i'm with nord on this (shock gulp)  re the plot setting  and being uncomrtable with a character with whom bonding is expected and who wants to kill someone. it  does not sit easily.,,, unless at war and in the resistance. Giving out a punishment  is different - much as I swat and only manage to stun a fly but give it something to think about. 
Is this  native ninja stuff about learning survival or endurance skills? Or is this an 'in' joke? If yer got 'em yer use 'em is the usual way of handling odd skills.

Or would it be better I shut up? Not sure I am entitled to a voice in this. When I write, participation by others means bringing tea, coffee, gin and food.... on demand but not ideas. Not if they wish to live.
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Sylvain
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyMon 16 Mar 2020, 16:39

All voices are welcome.

A terminal revenge against a very bad guy is not what I have in mind. I'm thinking about something more psychoanalytic. I've updated my document here to explain more (see paragraphs 1878, 1890 and 1894, this is a short read).
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Sylvain
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyMon 16 Mar 2020, 17:16

An example of what I had in mind when speaking about romantic poems about the contrast between a party and a character's feeling: here (Charles Beaudelaire - Paris Spleen - The Old Acrobat).
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nordmann
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyMon 16 Mar 2020, 19:07

Ok - I had promised myself I'd stick to historical inaccuracies etc, but this girl's character is really puzzling me.

I get that she's shooting at her father's house in order to "scare" him, but why? And more crucially what level of scared is she striving for?

I come from a society in which such casual peppering of people's houses with deadly gunfire is unfortunately not uncommon at all, and it is always - as you seem to understand - designed to intimidate the occupants. Something at which it undoubtedly and invariably succeeds too.

But the whole intimidation and fear thing rests on the occupant at least knowing the gang, if not the actual identities, of the shooters. A completely random shooting for no apparent reason, while certainly scary, defeats the purpose of the exercise. It gives rise to extreme curiosity on the part of the occupant and the authorities as to who did it, and certainly why. After all it can be anything from a near fatal mistake to the act of a completely unhinged psychopath who might do the same again to someone else at random.

Is Josie, by doing this strange and ugly thing, banking on the fact that her father knows it was she who did it? If so, is this a culmination of a deteriorating dialogue between them? And what does she expect him to do next if he knows it was her? Surely he will have to give this information to the authorities at some point? So what has she achieved?

If she knows full well that he can never suspect it was she who did it, then why do it at all? He will simply have to relay this ignorance to the authorities, who will then embark on an urgent man-hunt to track down this deadly imbecile prowling their streets. Especially in a city with the eyes of the world on it at that particular time, with a huge amount of foreign guests and press in town, in which a potential psychopathic murderer on the loose is the last thing anyone in authority could ever tolerate just at that precise moment.

I'm just flummoxed - no matter what way you cut it she's an incredibly imbecilic individual based on this very strange action on her part. A huge amount of effort and risk achieving absolutely nothing, least of all a measure of revenge or tit-for-tat retaliation, either of which could be achieved so much more effectively through other means and with just a fraction of the intelligence, cunning and spirit that an average woman of the day needed to employ if she wished to emulate the status and freedom of a man in a very patriarchal and masochistic society. She's meant to be a clever person. Or did I get that wrong too?

Anyway I'll opt out of this particular discussion now. Any tips regarding historical accuracy I'll of course chip in with should you wish.
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Sylvain
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyMon 16 Mar 2020, 20:35

> I get that she's shooting at her father's house in order to "scare" him

She doesn't shoot at her father. She shoots at Hausendorf, the man who works for her father, in order to scare him (yes, it's dangerous, but see below). She's already sent two threat letters asking him to stop his collaboration with Bennett.

Josie is a little girl crying for help and desperate to understand what happened to her family (she doesn't know about her mother's sickness and how/why she died). She is mad at her father, but she doesn't know why exactly. She knows he's involved in shifty activities. She knows he knows more than he said about her mother's death. But that's all. 

Now is she clever? Maybe, but her judgment is clouded.

What does she want to achieve? If you ask her, she'll answer that she wants to put an end to her father's criminal activities. But what she wants, really, is to get is attention.

The authorities are part of the plan. Josie wants to attract the authorities attention to what's Bennett is up to. But she won't succeed : Bennett won't let the police investigate Hausendorf (he will kidnap him this very night and move him to a safer place). So the police will conclude to a fight between apaches.

> Anyway I'll opt out of this particular discussion now

Please don't, this is very useful. Explaining is a good way of finding mistakes.
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nordmann
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyMon 16 Mar 2020, 22:25

Hausendorf must be the unluckiest man in the world. First an anonymous little girl crying for help tries to kill him (as far as he knows) and then he's kidnapped by the little girl's father. All in the one night!

If I was him I'd get a good lawyer. Edgar Demange or Fernand Labon were probably free at the time and either one of them seems up to the job.

But seriously - it's still an extremely ill thought out escapade, however much a "little girl crying for help" she might be. Because despite this cry of anguish executed with a firearm she's also meant to be considerably more experienced in life than an average girl of her age at the time and intellectually resourceful enough to navigate the globe, adopt successful disguises, traverse cities at night in cowboy-ninja mode, set a cunning plan in motion based on a rather acute analysis of her family, keep her plans secret from confidantes, and that's even before we look at her ability to successfully live in sin in a strange city while procuring a steady supply of prophylactics. Sorry, but this girl just doesn't add up as a credible person ... yet. I'm still waiting for how the narrative miraculously resolves this incredibility, or if it simply proceeds without even trying.
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Sylvain
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyMon 16 Mar 2020, 23:44

> Sorry, but this girl just doesn't add up as a credible person

She won't ever. She is a badass pop culture heroine, like the Bride of Kill Bill. However, the magic of fiction is that if her feelings are real and her words ring true, readers won't notice. Well, that's the theory.

> Hausendorf must be the unluckiest man in the world

He's got a very specific talent that Bennett needs: he's an expert cryptographer.
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LadyinRetirement
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyTue 17 Mar 2020, 08:32

Is this novel aiming at being a novel which is 100% true to the time in which it is set or is it going to be more in the steam-punk genre.  The latter would allow more leeway as it sometimes seems to embrace anachronisms.

This is an interesting thread though - I have learned a lot about the "Apaches" in Paris at the turn of the century in following this thread.

Can she dance the can-can?  If she is dressed in male attire for part of the story she might have sufficient freedom of movement to be able to disarm an opponent by knocking a weapon out of his/her hands by a high kick.  I wondered about an escape featuring the canals of Paris - but if we already have the sewers featured and a boat on the Seine (and did someone mention a 'dirigible'?) too many types of transport might end up like too many strong-tasting ingredients in a cake cancelling each other out.  I noticed that canals in Lorraine had been mentioned earlier in the thread so maybe they play a part in another part of the novel so canals in Paris as well as Lorraine might be overdoing it.
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyTue 17 Mar 2020, 09:38

> Is this novel aiming at being a novel which is 100% true to the time in which it is set or is it going to be more in the steam-punk genre

I plan the novel to be science fiction, in the Jules Verne sense (i.e. having a historically correct submarine in the story, but 100 years before it actually existed). One science fiction element I plan to introduce relates to cryptography.

>  the canals of Paris

Any more data about this?
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LadyinRetirement
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyTue 17 Mar 2020, 10:55

I know virtually nothing on the subject, Sylvain.  Here is a link to a French waterways site https://www.french-waterways.com/waterways/seine/paris-canals  I'm something of a fan of the French TV series Engrenages (Spiral in English).  In one series of "Engrenages" a body was found in a canal and I know the series is based in Paris.  "Spiral" isn't an exact translation of "Engrenages" so I don't know how it came to be used as the English title.
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyTue 17 Mar 2020, 14:26

Thanks @LadyRetirement. 
Paris (as opposed to Venice, Bruge, Saint-Petersbourg, Amsterdam, etc.), is usually not considered a "city on the water". There are a few spots, though, in the north of Paris. There is a good summary here. This article has remembered me of this underground section, which would definitely be a nice setting for the electric boat:
A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 1280px-Le_Canal_Saint-Martin_-_vue_de_la_vo%C3%BBte_souterraine
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nordmann
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyWed 18 Mar 2020, 07:19

The whole steam-punk thing makes for brilliant graphic opportunities but absolutely ridiculous science, which is a problem for a genre with such a reliance on realistic portrayals of surreal technology. One has to be in a certain frame of mind to appreciate the genre, willing to wallow in the fantasy element while forcing oneself to ignore the dishonest appeals to credibility in every frame regarding the physical environment graphically presented. When not done well (and most of it isn't) it makes for a turgid experience on the part of the reader, well this reader anyway.

But I like what you say about the Jules Verne slant on reality that you're aiming for. And this is in fact where the whole steam-punk thing began too. The original attraction was not so much to create a "literary genre" or "aesthetic" but to genuinely have a stab at seeing just how many features of modern technology could in fact have been achieved in some manner using the technology available in the Victorian period. It still involved quite a bit of fanciful conjecture that chose to ignore some vital aspects to technological production, but in purely scientific terms it was hugely enjoyable to see the "solutions" to this challenge, many of which were so good that one initially wondered how come humans didn't actually develop this technology at the time. Until one looked closer at the solution of course, which tended to ignore some vital secondary elements (no access to power grids, inferior substitutes for synthetic components, etc).

But I digress. Jules Verne, the original steam-punk, certainly tried hard to acknowledge these limitations (after all he was writing before many of them had been overcome) and almost always gave a nod in his narrative to "explaining" how these had been "solved" through some near-scientific method, often mysteriously by some "genius", but now and again citing a technical process or discovery that in fact came true later. If you have the technical understanding to ensure that any such innovation, presented by you as occurring in 1900 before it actually came about historically, appears completely logical and credible (if ridiculously genius on the part of the innovator) then I look forward to reading it.

Maybe, for example, our compliant young mechanic in the boat-house has adapted Trouvé's motor with a compressor and dual capacitor so our heroine can now not only "with one hop be free" but do so at the speed of a four-stroke standard outboard motor as used in speedboat races in the 1930s!

(I realise you've already forbidden our ninja access to this boat - and some handy humpy bumpy with the young mechanic - but I still reckon the boathouse in Neuilly is just too convenient to ignore, given that she's already there and needs a speedy getaway).
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyWed 18 Mar 2020, 10:23

> Maybe, for example, our compliant young mechanic in the boat-house has adapted Trouvé's motor with a compressor and dual capacitor

That's exactly what I will be looking at. I expect to get help from technical forums. 

I plan to use the electric boat at a later stage, probably in Egypt. This boat reminds me a lot of the Shark-proof submarine in Tintin (see here and here). We can even introduce a nod to Red Rackham's Treasure (see here), by mimicking a scene or a dialog.
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyWed 18 Mar 2020, 17:24

Silvio Speca, the visual artist, has started the style research. Any comment about the clothes?

[IMAGE REMOVED, SEE BELOW]


Last edited by Sylvain on Thu 19 Mar 2020, 10:05; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyWed 18 Mar 2020, 18:04

@Sylvain wrote:
That's exactly what I will be looking at. I expect to get help from technical forums. 

Just to let you know before you dismiss us all here as arty-farty historians  Shocked , there are quite a few of us regularly posting here, who are actually competent, qualified, engineers and scientists. So, by all means, ask away...
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyWed 18 Mar 2020, 20:20

@Sylvain wrote:
@nordmann wrote:
Sorry, but this girl just doesn't add up as a credible person

She won't ever. She is a badass pop culture heroine, like the Bride of Kill Bill. However, the magic of fiction is that if her feelings are real and her words ring true, readers won't notice. Well, that's the theory.

Sylvain - j'ai voulu répondre encore au fil de discussion au forum français a castafiore.org, enc en qui concern l'arrivée de Josie a son destination et l’échange verbal avec < les trois jeunes femmes endimanchées > mais le fil a disparu.
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyWed 18 Mar 2020, 20:33

> should you post your technical questions here, you may well get your answers muy prontissimo

I definitely will.
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyWed 18 Mar 2020, 20:42

I'm not a scientist or engineer - or an artsy-fartsy historian, just an interested lay person.  I'd like to clarify that I wasn't suggesting yesterday that the novel should be in the steam-punk genre; I was trying to clarify what type of book this work was going to be because that might impact how much creative licence could be used in telling the story.
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyThu 19 Mar 2020, 09:42

Your link to Silvio Speca's drawing (?) directs to a dropbox folder and doesn't work.

On the subject of referencing Tintin within the story - be very careful. Since Remi/Hergé's 1983 death his estate has been managed by a group of relatives operating as a company called Moulinsart, and they achieved notoriety (to put it mildly) for an absolutely aggressive legal pursuit of anyone who used Tintin related stuff without their permission, which they never gave anyway. At least up to 2012. Then, when they tried to sue a Hergé fan club in a Dutch court to the tune of one million euro for publishing Tintin's image without permission, it was discovered during the court case that Hergé had in fact legally handed over image rights to his publisher Casterman way back during the war. Now it's Casterman who are out stalking the world looking for victims to sue, and if anything they're even worse than Moulinsart in that they are quite willing to grant permission, but only for a ludicrously expensive fee and a right to "vet" the image before it's published. Last I heard they have even tried to obtain exclusive rights for Hergé's "drawing style" through a Belgian patent process, which thankfully was rejected. But just so you know what you might be getting into ...
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyThu 19 Mar 2020, 10:05

> our link to Silvio Speca's drawing (?) directs to a dropbox folder and doesn't work.

That's strange, it works fine on my side... Here is the drawing again (and I've removed it from my previous post):

A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 Personnages_small
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyThu 19 Mar 2020, 10:09

A link to a private folder where you already have rights will always work in your own browser, just not necessarily for others on the internet-

But technicalities aside, excellent graphics! Congrats to Silvio.

btw - just make sure Silvio knows the difference between morning, smoking, dinner and evening garb for the men (I'm looking at the bloke on the right in particular). For people who could afford such suits these things were quite important back then.
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyThu 19 Mar 2020, 10:12

A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 Right-arrow



> On the subject of referencing Tintin within the story - be very careful

Thanks. In fact, a month ago, I investigated this before registering domain name "castafiore.org". I came to the conclusion that being sued would be good communication, and that the domain name would be relatively painless to change :-)
Within the novel itself, I plan to use subtle references, no actual material from Tintin. But I agree this should be done with care.

> A link to a private folder where you already have rights will always work in your own browser

Yes, good catch.
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyThu 19 Mar 2020, 10:17

> morning, smoking, dinner and evening garb for the men

To all: this is not urgent, as it will be used later in the novel, but any picture you can find will be of much help.
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyThu 19 Mar 2020, 10:31

A very useful set of images on this website depicting American men's suits and coats from the period. What they call the "sack suit", in Britain was called the "lounge suit", but both were styled on a French business-suit fashion that had started just prior to the turn of the century and became immediately popular since it covered a multitude of uses (even sport on occasion!). If in doubt, Silvio should opt for this one.

However as you can see there were still very strict rules concerning what to wear when entertaining in the evening, or even if one simply wanted to show that one was of a class who entertained of an evening at all. So when the action takes place indoors after around 6pm and the subject is a man of means it adds to the authenticity of the image if the rules are shown to be followed.
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyThu 19 Mar 2020, 18:11

> If in doubt, Silvio should opt for [the sack suit]

Understood. The main mistake on the drawing seems to be that Bennett lacks the vest.

> there were still very strict rules concerning what to wear when entertaining in the evening

Got it, thanks.
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptySat 21 Mar 2020, 15:46

An Edison film from June 1900 showing the Eiffel Tower and in the background the Porte Monumentale.



A lot of lounge jackets (and some very modern dipstickery) in evidence Smile
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptySat 21 Mar 2020, 17:55

Amazing movie.

We started working on the artwork (see here), so you can see how we try to show Josie's fragility and state of mind.
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptySat 21 Mar 2020, 18:47

I was actually thinking of Silvio when I watched this lecture by Mary Weaver Chapin. She covers the visual vibe of 1900 Paris covering everything from prints, architecture, women's fashion and furniture to just about every other aesthetic meme we traditionally associate with the period. The first bit focuses on the International Fair. She also does a good job of explaining the social mores of the day - especially the tension between how Parisians viewed their ideal selves and the rather less salubrious realities that also characterised the place and time in which they lived.



Silvio's an impressive illustrator - it's hard to see quite how Josie's "fragility" is portrayed in the drafts (at least with my eyesight), but I wish you both luck in getting it nailed down!
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptySun 22 Mar 2020, 16:44

I checked on the site but am little wiser as to what this is about. I did not understand what nord wrote of  odd sounding genre (No unusual for me)  and I am further nonplussed about the lady's fragility.

Inferiority complex?.... Seems unlikely. Might fall apart at the seams in temper? (manslaughter, m'lud, not murder) Might have a tizzy fit with tears? Fragility in semblance is a very good defence ploy..... as in Puss in Boots in Shrek..... or me if I work at it.....and often a cover for strength. 

An survival training of quality would either use a semblance of fragility or cure it..... or so I think. having lived a sort of Perils of Pauline life myself it is not for the lily livered.
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptySun 22 Mar 2020, 20:49

@Sylvain wrote:
We started working on the artwork (see here)

C’est super - mais qu'est-ce qui se passe avec les forums là-bas? Ils sont un peut délaisser à ce moment. En comparaison de ce fil ici même à Res Historica (et bien plus animé), les forums à Castafiore.org semblent une vraie ‘suite virevoltante’.
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyMon 23 Mar 2020, 10:32

Thanks Nordmann for the excellent lecture.

Nordmann, Priscilla: I intend to show part of Josie's "fragility" through the graphic narrative of the 4 first pages. It's not obvious right now on the thumbnails, but I hope it will be clearer with the pencils.

Vizzer: the forum on castafiore.org is a bit silent these days, although I continue posting on it (see here). The reason is that I stopped promoting it until we get some more graphics. It was too much communication effort for me to get only a dozen visitors a day. I hope more people will join where artwork will begin to flow.
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyMon 23 Mar 2020, 11:31

Don't know if this will be any help, Sylvain. Meles has mentioned the publication already, Le Petit Journal issues available online:

Le Petite Journal 1900

Petit's the word, they're only 4 pages long
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyMon 23 Mar 2020, 13:43

> Le Petit Journal 1900

Fascinating! You can spend a life reading these!
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyMon 23 Mar 2020, 13:58

This is some footage of Paris and the 1900 Exposition:

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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyTue 24 Mar 2020, 21:33

So here is the idea for the beginning of the story: Josie goes alone to Neuilly's fair. A man tries to seduce her, by showing off at the shooting stand. He wins something and offers it to Josie. But she's fed up and goes home alone (20 minutes walk), by foot, at around 10pm (in summer).

Does it sound ok for a daring woman? Am I missing something about seduction behavior in 1900 at a fair? What kind of trendy bauble or toy would the man win at the shooting stand?

Also, when investigating this shooting stand idea, I ran into the history of air guns, and I cannot resist the pleasure of showing the gorgeous Girandoni air rifle (1779):
A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 Girandoni_Air_Rifle
A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 Austrian_Girandoni_system_Accouterments_Bag
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyWed 25 Mar 2020, 08:50

Quite ok for her to walk home in my view, even unaccompanied given the relatively early hour and the fact that the streets were well populated due to the events going on, well lit by the day's standards, and simply because walking from A to B was still by far the most common method for city dwellers. As long as she observed the usual caution required for a young lady she'd make it.

I have a problem though with the "flirtatious" lad at the fair. In that circumstance he would certainly not have assumed she was alone at the fair and that he was therefore at liberty to launch straight into his chat-up procedure. In their encounter there at least has to be some reference, implied or stated, to how he so quickly deduced he was actually able to take that social liberty.

From the point of view of credible characters it is important. And likewise it is not enough for Josie's motivation to quit the encounter simply being that she was "fed up". Bored she might well have been by his unwanted attention, but I reckon - given her character - that a more likely motivation would be annoyance with his presumption as much as his crass chat-up lines. I'm assuming she demonstrates her superior marksmanship at this shooting gallery encounter? (Or else why have it?). This annoyance can therefore be easily communicated with a pithy, concise, sardonic parting shot from the girl as she takes leave of his company after besting him in shooting skills.
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PostSubject: Re: A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900   A participatory graphic novel taking place around 1900 - Page 4 EmptyWed 25 Mar 2020, 09:13

Thanks Nordmann.

Regarding the seduction episode, I will propose a full script later today. I will try to set something up that explains why the guy can see she's alone. Also, she's not fed up by the lad, but by the whole situation. More on this later. I'm a bit reluctant to show her demonstrating her superiority at the shooting, as it would somehow break her anonymity. I intend to replace this by disdainful irony.

Any idea about what one can win at a shooting gallery?
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