The clever folks at SMITH Magazine—creators of the Six-Word Memoir project—are running a series of “true life webcomix” depicting all that’s wonderful, and all that’s horrible, about the people with whom we share walls or property lines.
Next-Door Neighbor is a collection of illustrated stories from some of today’s most talented artists and writers. New contributions are posted every two weeks.
The stories are by turns whimsical, poignant, heartfelt and distressing (loneliness, loss and vermin are prevailing themes). But there’s more here than just artistic diversion…these kinds of deeply personal and unguarded reflections reveal more about human longing than market research ever will.
In his talk at Vine 06, Arnold Wasserman surveyed the room and asked why we’re not all playing The Sims as an exercise in ethnography. He wasn’t being flip. His point was that you don’t have to be IDEO to discern meaning from human behavior. It’s all around you. Just look closely.
So check out the comics. And the Six-Word Memoirs. Listen to the voices inside the stories. You might be surprised at what you learn.