Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Comics class

So tonight was the last night of a seven-week class that my husband and I took called "Comics for Adults"; we've been thinking for awhile about working together on some kind of graphic novel and we thought that taking this class would help familiarize us with the process and gain a better understanding of comics and comic writing and drawing. I have to say that the course definitely met my expectations and I learned a lot. I learned I can't draw! No, I already knew that! Seriously, it was a great experience. Not like I'm ready to do my own graphic novel or comic zine but it gave me more of an appreciation of what goes into producing one, from the planning to the final inking. Tonight we inked the first page of our little comic on Bristol board, just like professionals; it was kind of neat.

The reason I'm talking about this in the context of a blog about books and reading is that I've already started to notice how taking this class is changing the way I look at graphic novels and manga. I learned to pay a little more attention to the artwork and especially the inkwork; I learned to notice how things are arranged on the page and the effect that that arrangement has on the reading experience. I think I believe that the story should come first and the artwork should serve the story and it's interesting to me to look a little more closely at the interplay between them.

All of it does kind of make me want to work on that graphic-novel interpretation of my trip to Ireland after college or something like that. I love comics and I've always wanted to draw one but I think I have to admit that the drawing side of the equation is not my strong point. Maybe I could be a redheaded Harvey Pekar and have someone else draw for me. My final project was a short story about a flat tire; I ended up doing the script and rough sketches with stick figures, and my husband did the final drawings, which I inked. A model for future collaboration perhaps?