Behind the Uncomics anthology: Mattias Elftorp

Behind the Uncomics anthology: Mattias Elftorp

Recently, Uncomics anthology artist Mattias Elftorp posted this walkthrough of the process behind his contribution,* Outside, to his blog:

[…] I thought I’d show a little something from the comic I made for CBA vol 56|57.

It’s called OUTSIDE and is an uncomic made from one normal comic (a chapter from Piracy is Liberation 005) and three paintings (H8 from Alkom’X #8, the tape cover for the Noise Against Fascism/Legion of Swine split and Her Fiery Eyes from After the Ends of the World), piled on top of each other and cut up to create a non-narrative structure, something that can’t be read other than through vague feelings and instinct.

My first thought when Allan Haverholm announced his theme (UNCOMICS) as guest editor for this issue of CBA was something like: “I should make something for this, how hard can it be?”

It turned out to be about as hard as I thought it would be, except the first idea I had didn’t work at all. That one was more of a deconstruction, literally, with the elements of a comic (panels, bubbles, texts, drawings, gutters etc) falling apart and off the page as the comics progressed, with an attempt at making some kind of point in the end.

From Outside, Mattias Elftorp’s contribution to the Uncomics anthology:

Then I realized that I should view this project as visual noise rather than anything else. And when I listen to noise, I’m not very intellectual about it, and the noise I’m listening to is also generally made by musicians who go more by feeling than intellectual theory when they put together their music. Or at least that’s how it comes across, I’m far from an expert. The best noise to me is harsh noise walls that go for your intestines rather than your brain.

So I tried using that kind of approach instead. I took the chapter Outside from Piracy 005, put all the pages in top of each other for the first page, then added and subtracted more elements as it progressed through its 10 pages until I had a visual flow I felt was right.

Maybe I should note that basically none of what I’ve just said was done consciously at the time. But hey, after-the-fact constructions are also constructions.

Allan has a text going throughout the issue about how comics is (or could be) a visual medium rather than a narrative one. I’m not sure I agree with his points, because to me it has always been mostly about the narrative and the visuals are definitely a part of the narration and it doesn’t make sense to separate them. But it was an interesting theme to work with and see what I could do with it.

Mattias Elftorp is a featured artist in the Uncomics anthology, out now!

Allan Haverholm

Allan Haverholm

Artist, editor, writer and performer. The font from which Uncomics sprung.

To comment, please send an email to submissions@uncomics.org.

Any comments may be subject to publication on this site only. Your contact information will not be shared with third parties.