Friday, June 6, 2014

Hyperbole and a Half by Allie Brosh

If you're not familiar with Allie Brosh, she is a blogger, whose crude drawings and random stories might just make you laugh out loud.  She uses Paintbrush (similar to MSPaint) to draw cartoons about memorable incidents in her life.  Although her drawings are simple, she has a great way of showing a range of emotions in her characters, which are biographical.  Her stories are either funny-because-it's-true, or just completely non-sequitur (which I love too).

Brosh writes a lot about her childhood.  One of my favorite stories is how she and her sister had a toy parrot that would record whatever they would say.  They used it to drive their mother crazy, like any respectable siblings would do.

I also love stories about her dogs.

Despite their simplicity, Brosh has used her illustrations to express some pretty complex emotions.  Specifically depression.  The blend of her silly drawings and at times disturbing narratives of how she has suffered with depression is powerful.  You want to cry, and laugh at the same time.  You realize that this person drawing some of the funniest cartoons you've seen is actually...a person.  It's like realizing your favorite comedian isn't always cracking fart jokes all day.

I remember when a friend of mine first told me about Brosh's blog.  I checked it out.  It was pretty funny, so I periodically checked in on it.  But the posts slowed, and shortly after an excited "I'm writing a book!" post, Brosh posted "Adventures in Depression."  She struggled, and it was apparent.  Not just from the lack of posts on her site, but also from her posts themselves.  But her openness about her struggles just made me love her even more, and hopefully, if you don't already, her book or blog will make you love her too.

Click here to view Allie Brosh's blog, Hyperbole and a Half.