Mathew Houston
Two Strangers
The story is about a monk with the powers of Buddha, and a red panda that he later meets within his temple. The story presents loneliness, depression and how both can cause us not to trust others. Through our heroes Zen & Chi we begin to find hope and acceptance throughout the story.
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Artist/Thesis Statement

Throughout my time at UMass Lowell, I have always wanted to create stories, and assist other storytellers in telling their stories. With this in mind, I made a graphic novel for my senior studio project. The title of the novel is called “Two Strangers.” The story is about a monk with the powers of Buddha, and a red panda that he later meets within his temple. The story presents loneliness and depression, and how both can cause us not to trust others. I created this story because, during my time here, I have gained and lost friendships. When I was alone, I would tend to stop trusting others, and when I was younger, I pushed individuals away for it. I continued this thought process for almost five years, and I wanted to lock myself into a box, until I met a stranger who made me change my mind. After that day, I changed, and started to begin trusting others around me.
My project includes story boards, landscape designs, infographics and character dialogue, and a poster. I have added an online website to the project to showcase the novel along with a lore booklet of the main character of the story. I have created a kit to help combat the issue the character Zen has which is acceptance. My hope in creating this novel is to make viewers understand that they are not alone as long as they are willing to be open minded to change.

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