This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
edu July 6July 30 2009 MTWTh 912:15 Course Description Making Comics is a practical course exploring the possibilities of various types of comics, from singlepanel to multipanel strip to severalpage story. Inclass exercises will focus on the building blocks of comics: layout, composition, drawing, narrative, inking, and lettering skills. The course also includes instruction in perspective and figure drawing. For the final project students will create their own comic from thumbnail sketches through scanning and reproduction. Discussion and analysis of past and current comic genres and artists, and ongoing critiques of student work, will provide insight and inspiration. Grading: Attendance, InClass Exercises, Homework, Comic Book Reports: 60% Final Project: 40% Attendance required at every class meeting. Missing three classes will result in lowered letter grade. Homework will be due for critique at the start of each class. Materials: For drawing: 8.5” x 11” sketch pad/ office paper 14” x 17” smooth surface Bristol board Heavyweight tracing paper (also called vellum) Pencils—HB Mechanical pencils— 0.5 or 0.7 with HB graphite Erasers: white and kneaded For Inking: Speedball (Hunt) Sketching Pen Set with nibs and holder Pigment drawing pens: Micron, FaberCastel or Uniball. Round watercolor brushes sizes 2 and 4 India ink: Windsor & Newton, Dr Ph Martin’s, KohINoor Graphix white (Deleter brand “White 2.”) or white acrylic paint or gouache (small tube) Small brush for white Drafting tools: 18” clear plastic gridstyle ruler with an inking bevel 18 or 24” Tsquare Ames Lettering Guide
Proportional wheel (scale) Drafting tape Xacto knife Scissors Books: McCloud, Scott, Understanding Comics Speigleman, Art, Maus I & II Mamet, David, On Directing Film Available on course reserve at the library Schedule Day 1: Character Design/Iconic Representation Inclass Exercise: Comics skills on the board Inclass Exercise: Comics style continuum from realistic to iconic. Homework (Begin InClass): * Design two characters that could be featured in your upcoming comic book. These characters should be more or less rendered "realistically." * Each character should be shown in side view, front view, and rear view. * The two characters should be drawn in proportion to one another. * Include four face shots: happy, angry, surprised, and bashful/shy. * Repeat above but redesign your characters in a highly iconic style. Reading: Understanding Comics, chapter 2. Wear or bring in shoes with laces Day 2: Drawing vs. Design. Inclass Exercise: Create a onepage comic, using no words, that explains to a reader how to tie a shoelace. Imagine giving their comic to an alien who speaks no earth language (but needs its laces tied!). “Think Before you Ink” Comics game show Homework: Drawing 5 objects in motion Day 3: Singlepanel cartoons Activity: drawing singlepanel comics and caption competition Homework: draw at least 3 singlepanel comics with 3 captions each Reading: Understanding Comics, chapters 3 and 4 Day 4: The Strip. Inclass Exercise: Analyze a week’s worth of newspaper comics and answer hand out questionnaire. Using the answers to the questionnaire, create a comic strip in the same format about a
firstquarter freshman. The strip should be stylistically identical to the one studied. Homework: Finish a week of newspaper comic strips, include one example each of 7 types of transition. Demo: Use of Tsquares to lay out panels, Ames lettering guide, drawing for reduction. Reading Handout: How to Read Nancy Day 5: Story Telling Elements InClass Exercise: Show the following sequence of events using only pictures: You wake up and realize you have overslept and are now late for class. You rush out of your home towards school only to discover that it's Sunday. * Each image should be on its own 6" x 6" square drawn on 8.5" x 11" copier paper. * Finished artwork should be done with a fine point marker. * Stick figures are fine as long as the reader can discern what is happening in any given panel. This exercise is not about drawing; it is about storytelling. Use Richard Scary’s Make a World. * Minimum six panels. No maximum. This assignment is essentially a pantomime story that requires the student to tell a simple (yet challenging) story using only pictures. During the critique, the process of editing becomes apparent. Reading: David Mamet On Directing Film Day 6: Pencilling, Tortoise and Hare Make a penciled twopage pantomime Tortoise and Hare story. You may add any twists and change the setting of the story. There are two due dates. Roughs (thumbnails) are due the next class period. The finished assignment is due one week later. Penciling handout Reading: Understanding Comics, Chapter 6 Day 7: Story Structure Watch the movie Marty InClass and answer questions on handout. Break it down into scenes and shots. Story Structure handout Comic Book Reports: *Present a comic or graphic novel to the class in terms of its compositional elements: analyze drawing style, layout, use of text in how the story is told. (10 mins max.) There will be a signup sheet for time slots—everyone will present twice.
Day 8: InClass Exercise: Draw a page from two different scripts (handed out InClass). Homework: Part One: Write a single scene, for two drawn pages, that takes place in a specific location (In Burlington, around Campus, the waterfront, and/or Church Street.) The script, which must be typewritten, will be handed over to someone else to draw the next session. The writer will not have the opportunity to elaborate on the script with the penciller so it must convey all the information the penciller will need. Part Two : Next session randomly hand out scripts for other students to draw. Part Three: Two page collaborative comics due session after next. *Comic Book Reports InClass Exercise/Homework: Write a story about how you got to school today. It should be grounded in reality (you must be the "star"), but may include some imaginary elements. You will then produce two versions of the SAME story. Version 1: In 9 panels (each on its own 6" x 6" square drawn on 8.5" x 11" copier paper) tell the story purely visually, with no text or sound effects. In this version it might help to imagine that a companion who travels with you (or near you) for the entire journey holds the "camera." Imagine this person is using a still camera, with limited ability to zoom or get too close to you; the camera work should be very limited. Version 2: In 9 panels (each on its own 6" x 6" square drawn on 8.5" x 11" copier paper) Taking EXACTLY THE SAME MOMENTS from version 1, tell the story this time with much more ambitious view points to ENHANCE the storytelling, to convey an overall idea, or create a certain ambience. But remember, you can't change the actual events, only the way we view this action. Arrange the panels symmetrically in 3 rows of 3. Produce an elementary written plot and script first, then move to thumbnails. Especially with version 2, explore multiple camera positions at the thumbnail stage. Complete version 1 before you attempt version 2. Don't worry about too much detail at this stage just enough to tell the story. Further Exercise: Once you've completed both versions, compare and contrast the effectiveness of the stories. Now, take version 2 and ADD 3 more moments. These could be between existing panels, or at the beginning or end, consecutive or not. Essentially you're "filling the gaps". Now
you have a chance to tell the story injecting a different mood and/or atmosphere. Next combine both versions into one big story. Use all the panels from version 1 and version 2. See how the "simple" and more ambitious shots work surprisingly well next to each other. Maybe a mixture of shot types is a good style of storytelling? Finally, chose any number of panels to form your ideal version of the story, as few as you wish or all of them. Day 9: Inking InClass Demo of various nibs, inks, and brushes. InClass Exercise: Tracing a “Master” drawing in Ink Scripts handed out. Out door sketchbook drawing in ink to create reference drawings for student scripted collaborative comics. Reading: Understanding Comics Chapters 5 Homework: Read Maus and complete a study guide based on the reading. Day 10: Maus Tortice & Hare Pencils due InClass Activity: Discussion and Showing the CD ROM The Complete Maus. Assign Final Drawing Project: NonFiction Comic Create a completed threeto fourpage comic that is lettered and inked. The comic should be a nonfiction comic about the student and his relationship with comics. Essays on George Herriman, how comics are distributed, Manga, comics and sexism, and homages to favorite characters are a few examples. Both Understanding Comics and Maus are examples of nonfiction comics. InClass demos: Page Layout, lettering, titles. Objectives: Students take what they learned throughout the semester and use it to say something personal about their relationship with the medium of comics. *Comic Book Reports Day 11 Work Day Collaborative comics Due *Comic Book Reports Day 12 Introduce Final Project: * Make a periodical from all your previous assignments * Make a copy for everyone in the class. Objectives: Ultimately a finished comic is a product and not a loose piece of bristol
board. Drawing something for reproduction requires a unique set of concerns. The satisfaction of making an edition of a comic is unparalleled. This assignment provides a great way to wrap up (and bind!) the semester's activity. InClass Demonstration: I bring several examples of artist books, zines and mini comics to class to show examples of different formatting and binding techniques. Basic bookmaking and printing concepts are covered and discussed. *Comic Book Reports Day 13 Day 14 Day 15 Day 16 Meet in Waterman Mac Lab, with work already scanned. Meet in Waterman Mac Lab Meet in Williams Lab, ready to print Bind together comic books Critique and collect class minicomics Comics Jam Class party