A Day in Lockdown: COVID-19 Response comic depicts a day in the life of a family with a child with a disability

A credible and touching picture of lockdown life.” COVID-19 Response comic depicts a day in the life of a family with a child with a disability

Download the comic in English as a PDF from https://openaccess.city.ac.uk/id/eprint/26067

Download the Spanish version as a PDF from https://openaccess.city.ac.uk/id/eprint/26068

Download the comic in French as a PDF from: https://openaccess.city.ac.uk/id/eprint/26127/

“A Day in Lockdown” is a COVID-19 Response four-page comic depicting a day in the life of a family with a child with a disability during the first UK Lockdown in 2020.

“A Day in Lockdown” was developed between February and April 2021 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The comic was co-designed with a print comic book format in mind but intended for free digital distribution.

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You can also read the comic directly at:


The comic tells the story of a London family of Latin American background during lockdown, and it is also available in Spanish. http://www.franciscodelamora.com/four-pages-stories#/un-dia-en-cuarentena/

Co-designed and edited by Francisco de la Mora, Stuart Scott and myself, with art and story by Francisco de la Mora, “A Day in Lockdown” is part of a series of comics resulting from autoethnographic, participatory narrative co-design methods and produced as an output of the City Interaction Lab, Centre for Human-Computer Interaction Design, City, University of London.

“A Day in Lockdown” follows “Community Matters: Please Be Kind. (A COVID-19 Response Comic)“, focusing on an individual’s experience of social distancing measures in the context of visual impairment in the UK.

A motivation for these COVID-19 Response comics was the April 2020 creative brief from the United Nations, particularly addressing the “Key Messages”, including “physical distancing” and “kindness contagion” (United Nations 2020).  The work on these COVID-19 Response comics has been led by Dr Ernesto Priego, researcher at the Centre for Human-Computer Interaction Design at City, University of London.

As a comic, “A Day in Lockdown” is idiosyncratic and subjective; it is based on the personal experience of a London family during the first lockdown, and it does not intend to represent everyone’s experiences nor to make any generalisations.

Principles of biographical and documentary comics and autofiction were followed, and ethical guidelines were followed within the iterative participatory design process, including reader-testing and the incorporation of their feedback throughout the life cycle of the project.  

In the spirit of open access and open science, “A Day in Lockdown” has been licensed with a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial license. The CC-BY NC license allows reusers to distribute, remix, adapt, and build upon the material in any medium or format for non-commercial purposes only, and only so long as attribution is given to the creators.

The comic is available to download from City Research Online:


de la Mora, F., Priego, E. and Scott, S. (2021). A Day in Lockdown (A COVID-19 Response Comic) City Interaction Lab / Symbola Comics, London. https://openaccess.city.ac.uk/id/eprint/26067/


de la Mora, F., Priego, E. and Scott, S. (2021). Un día en cuarentena (un cómic en respuesta a COVID-19) City Interaction Lab / Symbola Comics, London. https://openaccess.city.ac.uk/id/eprint/26068/


de la Mora, F., Priego, E. and Scott, S. (2021). Une journée de confinement (une bande dessinée en réponse au COVID-19) City Interaction Lab / Symbola Comics, London https://openaccess.city.ac.uk/id/eprint/26127/

The authors are available for interviews about “A Day in Lockdown”. Please contact Ernesto.Priego.1@city.ac.uk  

What some readers have said

“I really loved this. It shows how hard it has been for so many people.”

“I like that it seemed to capture the details and reflections of a particular and very unusual point in time.

“Beautifully illustrated… It describes in a simple and clear way, the impact of the lockdown on the workload of parents, in general, but in particular on the workload of parents of children with a disability.”

“The comic conveyed a really complicated experience with heart and humour. It was very readable with a good amount of text and a clear art style. The novel approaches to page layout were used perfectly too!”

” I like the distinctive style of the artwork and all the clever details in the images. I liked too the way it was obviously rooted in personal experience and didn’t try to overdramatise but instead paint a credible and touching picture of lockdown life.”

” Found it to be very true to life experience during lockdown, and also quite funny!”

“Very nice comic, powerful narrative. Thank you!”

“It definitely resonated with me.”

About the authors

Francisco de la Mora’s experience as a comics creator, whether as sole author or in collaboration with editors and illustrators from around the world, goes from single-page works (such as the monthly piece he has drawn for the Hackney Citizen since January 2018) to full-length graphic novels (such as his eight-volume historical graphic novel series Brief History of Mexico published by Turner/El Colegio de México). He is a co-founder of Symbola Comics. Found out more about his work at http://www.franciscodelamora.com/.

Ernesto Priego has researched comics since the early 1990s. As a researcher based at the Centre for Human-Computer Interaction Design, he explores the role of comics as narrative, conceptual and speculative design tools and applies user-centred, participatory co-design methods to the creation of comics within public health or social interest domains. He leads the “Parables of Care. Responses to Dementia Care” project, which explores the potential of comics to enhance the impact of dementia care research (Grennan, Priego, Sperandio and Wilkins 2017; Priego, Wilkins, Martins, and Grennan, 2020; Wilkins and Priego 2020).

Stuart Scott is the UX lead at the City Interaction Lab. He is an experienced Design Researcher / Interaction Designer with a keen interest in speculative design and expertise in simplifying complicated experiences through the application of best practices in interaction design. He is also a comics creator.

About the Centre for Human-Computer Interaction Design, City, University of London

Formed over 25 years ago, the Centre for Human-Computer Interaction Design, City, University of London is one of the longest serving Human-Computer Interaction groups in London and the UK. Its prime focus is the relationship between people and innovative technology with the aim of creating more useful and usable systems, spurred on by the possibilities for enlarging human capacity and creating the conditions for better ways of living together.

About the City Interaction Lab

Established in 2006, The City Interaction Lab is the Centre’s Digital Product Design and Innovation Consultancy. The Lab’s team has worked on projects for organisations of all sizes including The BBC, The AA, Virgin Atlantic Airlines and Cancer Research UK.

About Symbola Comics

Symbola Comics is a creative studio providing unique communicative outlets through the use of comics. Clients include   Latin American House, London; Digital Science, the Mexican Embassy in the UK, and digital media companies Cuestione and Antifaz among others.

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