On “Hobo Lobo of Hamelin”

Out of all four E-Lit pieces I had the choice to write about for this week’s blog, “Hobo Lobo of Hamelin” sold me based on name and the fact that I didn’t have to download anything/take up computer space (I wonder if this prospect deters others from fuller exploration of pieces such as  “Dwarf Fortress”).

The “Hobo Lobo” site looks old, and besides the gorgeous color choices it’s not the most visually appealing (the hand drawn illustrations are awesome, but the juxtaposition with font choice is strange). This ends up not being as much of a problem when you’re into the story, but at first it’s a little off putting.

Clicking the button marked “psst” at the top of the page (because of course you’re going to click it!) leads you right to the author’s website. Nice job controlling site traffic, Stevan Zivadinovic.

Because the site is old, it takes a while to load. Illustrations show up layer by layer instead of all at once, offering a neat little peek into Zivadinovic’s creative process. Because the illustrations were hand drawn I often forgot about the importance of searching them for easter eggs. When I did look, I found a number of fun sound effects (a croak when you click the frog and so forth).

What really sold me (upon first read(?) through) was the sixth page. A slow procession of hand drawn characters move across a landscape that spans four pages of its own. The colors are cozy and, although you have to wait a while to see the whole shebang and might be tempted to click through, the wait is worth it. And then … you’re taken out of the piece’s world and into a page of credits and author notes.

To be honest, after my first go through I had no idea what I’d just seen. Where was the story besides a few cute drawings? Deciding to begin again, I realized that you have to SCROLL HORIZONTALLY to see more. There is a story to follow, complete with sounds and images and text content. Should there be an instruction page or should I just look harder?

If there’s one thing I’ve learned about e-lit thus far, one look is never ever enough.

Also, the night/outdoor drawings to red collage panel is GORGEOUS. I’ve never seen something like that on a computer, just at art fairs with magazine collages.

 

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