A practice based investigation using design and illustration to explore the role of narrative in nonfiction picturebooks

Tzomaka, Vassiliki (2017) A practice based investigation using design and illustration to explore the role of narrative in nonfiction picturebooks. Doctoral thesis, Anglia Ruskin University.

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Abstract

This research took place to explore the role of narrative in nonfiction picturebooks and provide a better understanding of children’s nonfiction picturebooks from the perspective of the picturebook artist. The study evolved from an observation that within the children’s picturebook genre there exists an undefined category of picturebooks that present nonfiction material using fictional stories. It coincided with a moment in time when books of nonfiction content were becoming increasingly popular, evidenced by increased sales and market growth, contrary to the rest of the book market. The use of reflective-in-action and reflective-on-action methods was based on a theoretical framework of three approaches (design practice, design exploration and design study) and led to an understanding of both the practice and the nonfiction picturebook as an object with multiple functions. The approaches allowed a critical evaluation of a series of experiments and this in turn informed the practice and allowed theories and new understandings to be reached. The investigation identified four types of narratives for picturebooks: visual fiction and nonfiction and verbal fiction and nonfiction and proposes a model for analysing the interaction of the narratives. An opportunity to investigate the use of glow-in-the-dark ink in a narrative context presented itself during the course of the experiments. The result of this part of the research is presented in a concertina book that uses glow-in-the-dark ink to create a nonfiction narrative. The research concludes that whilst most picturebooks are composed of all four narratives to some degree, nonfiction picturebooks are made up of a larger overlap of these narratives. Nonfiction picturebooks offer more opportunities for counterpoint and are therefore particularly exciting. As such a differentiation between fiction and nonfiction in the genre of picturebooks is suggested.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Keywords: nonfiction, narrative, picturebooks, glow-in-the-dark, Narrative Interaction Model, reflective practice
Faculty: Theses from Anglia Ruskin University
Depositing User: Ian Walker
Date Deposited: 30 Apr 2018 10:26
Last Modified: 16 May 2019 10:10
URI: http://arro.anglia.ac.uk/id/eprint/702976

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