François Giro and emino’s Yurayura is fascinating in that it’s a collaborative zine wherein the two creators concerned don’t actually, strictly speaking, collaborate. Rather it uses a flipbook format to provide both artists’ recollections of a walk they took together in Edinburgh in the early Spring of 2023. Giro’s half of the publication is told as a 10-page comic strip while emino’s account is a 17-page graphic narrative combining text and photographic imagery. What results is something that blends the experimental immediacy of DIY culture self-publishing with a sophisticated examination of individual perception, while also providing us with an introduction to the contrasting styles of the two artists.
Giro’s half of Yurayura portrays the duo’s visit to Dr. Neil’s Garden in Edinburgh and is titled ‘Time Travel: a walk with emino’. Giro’s strip combines a blocky, cluttered panel-to-panel with occasional photo insertions that gives the enterprise a near diary comics vibe. The lack of consistency in terms of style and page structures captures the spontaneity of the pair’s day out, both rooted in reality and yet also transitioning into dreamy impressionism where appropriate.
In stark contrast emino’s version of the day uses open page structures with great expanses of white upon which prose and photos almost float across the page. There’s something acutely poetic about this section of Yurayura, with the looser, freer page compositions asking the reader to dwell longer on each segment. emino’s remembrance of the day feels less observational in regards to exterior reality and more internalised, depicting reactions to surroundings and emotional responses to the events of the day.
Comics work that asks us to not simply immerse ourselves in the narrative but also to consider how we are interacting with it; about the methods and tools we use to interpret its nuances; and how expansive its language can be in application is always a priority here at Broken Frontier. Yurayura embodies all those qualities and, intriguingly for a comic that is about nothing more than a very normal and unremarkable day out, manages to be a very special example of the breadth of available approaches to sequential visual storytelling.
François Giro & emino (W/A) • Self-published, £4.00
Review by Andy Oliver