Using exercises developed by the great comic artist and creativity teacher, Lynda Barry, we'll create a variety of original hand-drawn characters and handwritten storylines to make both fictional and non-fictional graphic narratives in many forms, including single-panel, four-panel, multiple-panel comic strips, picture-stories, and zines. Each student will complete a handmade book of original visual images and stories that demonstrate our current interpretation of this thing we call 'comics.' As Barry says, "Just add the word 'graphic' to any of the following: novel, memoir, biography, journalism, creative-non-fiction, regular non-fiction, history, romance, bone-dry academic papers, fairy tale, poetry, sci-fi, fantasy, or anything else that presents itself in written form."
You don't need to be good at drawing or writing to take this class. But you must be willing to enter a certain state of mind in which we write and draw with open attention to the images (both drawn and written) that present themselves. Much of the work we do will be done during class hours, but there will also be homework. A sense of play enters into the process of creating stories and pictures. Are you willing to spend a lot of time playing?
Bring a standard black and white composition book and a black medium point Flair pen to the first class.
Buy the books before the class starts. You'll need them right away.
Lynda Barry, Syllabus Drawn and Quarterly
Ivan Brunetti, Cartooning Philosophy and Practice Yale University Press
Lynda Barry, What It Is Drawn and Quarterly