Wednesday, September 26, 2012
XKCD takes me back
I have loved the XKCD web-comic for years.
But this week, creator Randall Monroe found a way to throw me into a nostalgic state with his 'Click and Drag' piece of artwork. If you have not seen it yet, be sure to budget yourself a few hours before you head out on the adventure he has created.
In this cartoon, users can literally click and drag the last window around an enormous landscape where pirate ships sail the open water, rocket ships wait for blast-off and a people find extraordinary things in the ordinary corners of this world he has created.
What got me the most wrapped up in this comic is how similar the cave scenes are to something similar I used to draw in elementary school. On a single sheet of butcher block paper I would draw elaborate scenes of my own stick figure armies digging underground and discovering weird and wild things. Sometimes they would encounter mole-people. Other times they found treasure. Sometimes they would run into other stick-figures that were tunneling out of a near-by prison.
I never kept any of these drawing I did while in school because most always they wound end up finding a hidden nuclear bomb or would call in an air strike (I was only in the 3rd grade) and the entire scene would be demolished in a fury of pencil and pen lines.
Too bad, too, because I feel like I could put some of my right next to XKCD's and prove how well he tapped into the psyche of everyone else who did something similar to pass the hours as school when they were kids.
You also cannot ignore how much this cartoon is so much like a mirror opposite of Where's Waldo. While Waldo would hide in a landscape of constant activity and crowded masses, the XKCD characters are hiding in plain sight. Still, I would get the same thrill of finding one of these lonely cave diggers all alone as I did finding Waldo hiding in a sea of other Waldos.