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Ann Arbor Library Comics Workshop Report

 
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Jerzy
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Joined: 03 Apr 2003
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2006 12:21 am    Post subject: Ann Arbor Library Comics Workshop Report Reply with quote

Well, I'm back from hosting the Comics as Visual Language program at the Ann Arbor Library. And I have some photos for you:


We had a pretty good turnout--something like 30 people showed up. Here I am talking about the basic mechanics of comics storytelling, using the amazing work of Ernie ColÚn as an example.


I also did a bit of talking about how I make a comics page, based on the tutorial I did a while back.


We visited the MLAT site, and I showed them how Sara and I publish our comics on the web.


And during the second half of the program, we came up with a simple script and drew a comics page together. My page was projected on the screen as I worked on it, which gave me a Mark Kistler vibe. I almost started making sound effects as I worked.


I can get pretty animated when I get going about comics.

I think it went okay! One young fellow came up to thank me personally for doing the program, and the people in charge of teen programming seemed to be pleased with how it went.

I handed out a resource guide for the kids to pursue their artistic goals. It was a list of books, art supply stores, and useful web links. And, of course, I brought some original art and print comics for them to look at.

I also met a fellow indy artist there by the name of Chad Sell. I had a good time talking with him, so much so that we wound up sticking around for almost an hour after the program ended. He's teaching some comics classes at a community high school, so to him I take my hat off. There's no better way to get the word out about comics than that.

I had a good time. And as corny as it sounds, I just hope I helped some kids out. Or at least I hope I didn't confuse them with my babbling.

Oh, and I promised the kids I'd post a link I forgot to put in my list of resources: Blambot.com is the site where you can download comic book fonts.

So, thank you, Ann Arbor District Library, for giving me the opportunity to speak about comics. And thanks to everyone who showed up. I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did.
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Sara
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2006 12:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You are my hero.

I can tell by the pics that it went well. That's a packed house...and i see smiles! Teaching affectively....that's a skill that is so terribly hard and so taken for granted. I have no doubt that your passion, Jerzy...totally sold these kids! Gold star, my friend.
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Blob
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2006 3:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Teaching kids the joy of comics seems to be the latest trend in the webcomic world.
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Jerzy
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2006 3:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, someone's gotta do it... Cool

Edit: Who else is doing it, by the way?
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Tom Foolery
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2006 5:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There are these two guys near Ann Arbor...

I hope it truly is a new trend, cuz... well, I think it is nifty. There's a kid here who is just dying to have a tutor.
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Blob
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2006 8:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jerzy wrote:
Edit: Who else is doing it, by the way?


Tim Demeter of Reckless Life is preparing to do it for a second year. There's a link to the previous year's thread in the first post. He taught younger kids, ages 5-13. Batman, Spider-Man, and Teen Titans sketches played a large role in his curriculum. He was a happy man when he got done. He's trying to make his lesson plan more organized this year. He in turn was inspired partially by Penny Arcade, which apparently did this as well.

I think it's a good thing. It gets people interested in comics who might not otherwise have picked one up, and it brings attention to someone besides the big two.
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kaiserin
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2006 6:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's wonderful! I have tremendous respect for anyone who can work with kids. Teaching is a wonderful wonderful thing! I don't think there is any one thing a single human being can do for another that is more important. And to teach something that gives you so much personal pleasure yourself. You look so into it. I envy you.

I bet you touched a lot of lives there. Take another gold star!
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toonerfish



Joined: 14 Jul 2006
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 14, 2006 12:56 pm    Post subject: Re: Ann Arbor Library Comics Workshop Report Reply with quote

Quote:
I think it went okay! One young fellow came up to thank me personally for doing the program, and the people in charge of teen programming seemed to be pleased with how it went.


And that's what makes it all worthwhile! I was like that young fellow once, and advice from a cartoonist inspired me to stick with drawing all the way. I also know what that's like on both sides. I was like the young fellow and now I have become an artist inspiring young people to take up the craft. It really is amazing.

Yeah so to answer Jerzy's question, I run workshops for a week once a year. I have a friend who is a comic writer and we both go around to all of the high schools in north Tasmania, Australia.

It's really cool to see you're doing it too, Jerzy! You're knowledge about the craft would be extremely valuable to those kids! I hope that if any of them become comic artists, then they will look back and say "well there was this guy named Jerzy Drozd who ran a workshop, and what he taught me really got me interested in making comics."

That would be super.
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Tom Foolery
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 14, 2006 6:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

*psst!*

Hey guys, check out toonerfish's site, his comic is a must read. Terrific stuff!
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Jerzy
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 15, 2006 5:38 am    Post subject: Re: Ann Arbor Library Comics Workshop Report Reply with quote

toonerfish wrote:
I hope that if any of them become comic artists, then they will look back and say "well there was this guy named Jerzy Drozd who ran a workshop, and what he taught me really got me interested in making comics."


And the next sentence is:

"He seemed so awesome when I was a kid, but then I grew up and began to see how crummy his work really was. Still, he was a swell guy." Razz

All kidding aside, thanks, toonerfish! As goofy as it sounds, if I even helped one kid out that day, I'm more than content. And kudos to you for doing the same thing! Like I've said elsewhere, this is the best way to get the word out about comics.
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LeetComixMaker



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PostPosted: Sat Jul 15, 2006 7:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was there i was right next to the kid in the detroit hat
Exclamation It was kool
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LeetComixMaker



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PostPosted: Sat Jul 15, 2006 8:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote


the girl kinda blocked me out but i am the dude with the arrow saying me
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buck
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Joined: 16 Jan 2006
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 21, 2006 8:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh man. I live about 20 minutes away from Ann Arbor and I missed it. That's like finding out about a tricky bot convention a week after it was in your home town. Crying or Very sad
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dave roman



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PostPosted: Tue Aug 22, 2006 7:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey Jerzy! Great job on the workshop!

My fiancee Raina and I have started doing similar type workshops and library visits, so I'm really interested in how other cartoonists are going about it.

We're actually planning one for a library in Toms River, NJ at the end of September.

-dave
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Tom Foolery
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 23, 2006 1:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wow! Dave Roman! I was just wondering where I knew your name from, and I read your Bio that says you work with Nickelodeon Magazine! I hope you know I enjoy that magazine very much for the fun factor the comics there have. Nothing cliche, all wonderfully fun!

Yay NJ represent!
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dave roman



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PostPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2006 4:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tom Foolery wrote:
Wow! Dave Roman! I was just wondering where I knew your name from, and I read your Bio that says you work with Nickelodeon Magazine! I hope you know I enjoy that magazine very much for the fun factor the comics there have. Nothing cliche, all wonderfully fun!



Ha! Cool, totally appreciated it! I recently set up a blog for Nick Mag's comic section:

http://nickmag_comics.livejournal.com/
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Tom Foolery
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2006 2:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh man, this is awesome, thanks for the link!

Hey gang, take a gander at some comics for kids by clicking Dave's link! Some good stuff over there, including some of my favorite stuff, seeing artists do other artists characters!

This is really cool stuff!
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Tom Foolery
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2006 2:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh yeah, and by kids I mean kids of all ages- there's some great great stuff here for everyone.

Thanks Dave!
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Jerzy
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2006 10:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey, Dave!

Thanks for stopping by and for sharing the links!

I'm glad to hear that more artists are taking advantage of the surge of interest libraries are showing towards comics. I don't feel like the major publishers are doing quite enough to make comics accessible to everyone, so it's up to us indy guys to pick up the ball for them (and for us). And who better than a guy like you?

Sara and I are also doing a two-day lecture/workshop this November at Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne. That one's looking to be quite a bit of fun.

After that I'm teaching a course on digitally coloring comics at the Ann Arbor District Library.

What kind of workshops are you and Raina doing at your libraries? Is it pretty much along the lines of what I described above? I'd love to hear about any special things you tried that worked out better than you'd hoped.
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