Creativity Magazine

How Art Helps Stories Forge A Stronger Emotional Connection

By Mrstrongest @mrstrongarm

A good story creates an emotional bond with readers.

A visual can intensify the bond, but only if it fits. It has to reflect the story, and it has to help tell the story.

Stock photos are generic. They aren’t created for specific stories. That’s why they often fall flat or seem inappropriate. You may have even seen them used elsewhere.

Custom illustration, by contrast, is created for a specific story. It enhances the text because it’s based on the text and tries to add another dimension to the story.

Read on for a good example.

blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

*  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *

blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

I recently illustrated an essay titled, The Medically Misguided Approach To Mistreatment. The author is a anesthesiology resident looking back at her experience as a med student. You can read the entire essay here.

How Art Helps Stories Forge A Stronger Emotional Connection

The term mistreatment refers to sexual and non-sexual harassment, prejudice, bigoted remarks and the like. The med school’s affiliated hospital had a mistreatment policy. That’s the subject of the essay.

How Art Helps Stories Forge A Stronger Emotional Connection

The author writes that she was determined to achieve on the basis of merit alone, and that she “did not identify with being a woman of color, regardless of my South Asian heritage and femininity.” She begins by saying:

blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

In 2013, I entered medical school, fresh out of the incubator of all-girls school education and liberal arts college. Given the bubble I grew up in—“empower a
girl to serve and shape our world” was emblazoned on posters in every single
one of my high school classrooms—it is safe to say that I had some unrealistic notions about the world.

blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

How Art Helps Stories Forge A Stronger Emotional Connection

blank vertical space, 16 pixels high
As a med student, she attends lectures on the hospital’s mistreatment policy. Here she hears the phrase “on the rag” for the first time, and learns it’s a crude, antiquated term for menstruation. At one such session, a classmate shares this story:
blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

She was asked to close an incision during an operation, something considered a great honor given that the medical student’s role during the surgical rotation is
not to touch anything.

My classmate relays that she was minimally supervised by a resident, but when
the attending surgeon returned to the operating room, displeased her sutures
could leave a deep scar, he said she “ruined the patient’s life forever.” My classmate did not report the incident, internalizing that the result of her inexperience was somehow her fault. 

blank vertical space, 16 pixels high
The mistreatment lectures ask the students to consider certain hypothetical situations, like this one:
blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

A resident is taking too long to complete an operation and the attending surgeon asks her if she’s menstruating, or on the rag, as though that would affect her surgical technique.

We are asked if this constitutes mistreatment. Yes, my group votes unanimously. What was offensive about the scenario? The usage of “on the rag,” my group
seemed to decide. The implication that women are somehow lesser surgeons for
an inherently female trait is lost to the group.

blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

I decided to incorporate both situations– the one real, the other hypothetical– into a single illustration.

blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

How Art Helps Stories Forge A Stronger Emotional Connection

How Art Helps Stories Forge A Stronger Emotional Connection
The author also writes about a more subtle form of stereotyping:
blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

It is 2015. I am on my surgery clerkship and the course director asks each of us
what medical specialty we are thinking about pursuing. I have been warned about this question—it will later be on the list of things attendings cannot ask because of the students’ worry that their answer may influence their grade…

I defer answering, saying that I need to experience more clerkships before I can make a decision. This is known as a bullshit response. The attending tells me this
and then says he will guess which medical specialty is best for me. But I already know he is going to say Pediatrics.

Although the attending has never seen me act nurturing with anyone under the age of fifty (we are at a Veterans’ Affairs hospital), I am female, and therefore I belong with the children.

blank vertical space, 16 pixels high
Alas, future pediatricians get no respect:
blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

For our mistreatment seminar at the end of medical school, we are split into
groups based on our intended medical specialty. One student voices her concern
that this will decrease a diversity of opinions.

“Ugh, she must be going into peds,” my group mate says derisively.

“What’s wrong with peds?” I ask, knowing that I could have easily been that
student, having already been stereotyped as a future pediatrician.

“Too many feelings,” my group of future anesthesiologists jeers.

blank vertical space, 16 pixels high


You Might Also Like :

Back to Featured Articles on Logo Paperblog

These articles might interest you :

  • Big Food Giants Manipulate Public Health Policy in China

    Food Giants Manipulate Public Health Policy China

    Coca-Cola is at it again. As soda sales decline in the United States and Europe, beverage companies look to emerging economies like China for growth. And, it... Read more

    The 15 January 2019 by   Dietdoctor
    DIET & WEIGHT, HEALTH, HEALTHY LIVING, MEDICINE
  • Jewellery for a Precious You

    Jewellery Precious

    Jewellery is always close to a woman’s heart. It completes her look and boost confidence. Considering the changing trends in jewellery fashion, it becomes... Read more

    The 15 January 2019 by   Dr.jenifer Sayyed
    LIFESTYLE
  • Rajshri Productions’ Next Is A Film On Friendship | Hum Chaar | Trailer

    Abhishek Dixit’s debut feature film Hum Chaar is a Bollywood film made under the banner of Rajshri’s film. Hum Chaar is written and directed by Abhishek Dixit. Read more

    The 15 January 2019 by   Themoviean
    ENTERTAINMENT, MOVIES
  • Saint Paul the First Hermit

    Saint Paul First Hermit

    Today is the feast day of Saint Paul the hermit. This is a sweet and delicate Oatmeal Bread topped with rolled oats and naturally sweetened with agave. Saint... Read more

    The 15 January 2019 by   Veronica46
    FOOD & DRINK, RECIPES
  • Irupathiyonnaam Noottaandu | Teaser | Pranav Mohanlal | Arun Gopy

    Arun Gopy’s Irupathiyonnaam Noottaandu is an upcoming Malayalam action-drama feature film starring Pranav Mohanlal and Zaya David in the lead roles. Read more

    The 15 January 2019 by   Themoviean
    ENTERTAINMENT, MOVIES
  • A Year Of Body Positivity

    Year Body Positivity

    Last January, as I sat there on New Years eve all set to make the same old resolutions I've made year after year for as long as I can remember, I realised how... Read more

    The 15 January 2019 by   Sparklesandstretchmarks
    DIARIES, SELF EXPRESSION
  • Garden Bloggers Bloom Day – Jan 2019

    Garden Bloggers Bloom 2019

    Euphorbia rigidaWhen I went out to take the photos for this blog post I was surprised at how much was in flower dotted around the garden. Read more

    The 15 January 2019 by   Patientgardener
    GARDENING, HOME

Magazines