St. Mary's Projects in Studio Art:

Natalie Krissoff / SMP 2018

Push and Pulll: A Graphic Novel

Since early childhood, I was always a cautious person; I never took unnecessary risks, avoided talking to people unless absolutely necessary, and went about my day-to-day life constantly doubting myself and fretting over the tiniest things. It took me until about a year ago to even consider the notion that I had depression or anxiety, as it was never really discussed in my family, and I was afraid that being diagnosed with either would make me appear weak. I finally sought out help, and after a while I was able to get a handle on my self-doubt, and begin to process my emotions in a more rational manner than immediate, full-on panic. This revelation is the driving force behind my SMP; I decided to create a narrative in which I explored my own experiences with depression and anxiety, specifically how it affects decision making, through the use of a proxy character and a world of my own design.

After all the years I spent in denial about the effects of my own problems, I want the audience to be able to recognize these symptoms in themselves and in those around them. Through the use of a graphic novel format, I created an exploratory narrative that, despite being only ink on paper, connects with the viewer through shared experiences and emotions. Exploring two very different personalities, one anxious and timid, the other bold and reckless, I am answering questions and revealing truths about myself, and reconciling different parts of my personality.