Showing posts with label teaching. Show all posts
Showing posts with label teaching. Show all posts

Friday, January 15, 2010

Marc Singer teaches comics course at Howard, and incidentally, resurrects his blog

Marc's announcement of his course on comics is here, and and he also announces a book he co-edited on detective fiction here. I'm glad to see that he resurrected his I am NOT the Beastmaster blog as I enjoy his writing. Take note of his Final Crisis writing on Grant Morrison that was singled out by a critic as one of the best online pieces last year.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

GEM curator continues to discuss comics course

Arnold Blumberg, the curator at Geppi's Entertainment Museum, has another column online talking about designing his University of Maryland comics course. I mentioned the first and linked to it in this post.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Educational editorial cartoons

My, that title sounded boring, didn't it? Actually I wanted to mention the American Association of Editorial Cartoonist's Cartoons for the Classroom site. Every week or so, they pick an editorial cartoon, write some explanatory text about it and put up a downloadable version that teachers can use. I like this a lot - in fact, we used one in the museum I work in last year. They've got 127 that you can download as of today, by a wide variety of cartoonists.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

American U Prof Wenthe's graphic novel class

Michael got a press release yesterday. I'd take his course if I could.
Source: American University
Released: Mon 10-Dec-2007, 12:50 ET

Graphic Novels Reach Academia

Newswise — Graphic novels, comic books’ grown up counterpart, have gained popular appeal in the last five years thanks to blockbuster Hollywood movies based on graphic novels like 300, Sin City, Ghost Rider and V for Vendetta. Now they have a place in academia. American University literature professor Michael Wenthe has brought the medium to the Department of Literature with a course titled, "The Graphic Novel."

“This definitely is a time when comics in general, and graphic novels as a species of them, have found a lot more general acceptance,” said Wenthe, who also creates comics along with graduate school friend Isaac Cates. “It would not have been nearly as easy to teach such a course 10 years ago, in part because there’s been an explosion of really good material in the last 10 years, but also because the wider public discourse about comics has gotten a lot more nuanced.”

An expert in medieval literature, Wenthe introduces students to the literary characters in graphic novels that find their roots in medieval literature and even the works of Shakespeare. The class has 13 required books including Jimmy Corrigan—the Smartest Kid on Earth by Chris Ware, a 380-page exploration of the bleak life of a middle-aged man and his family’s 100-year history of withdrawal and loneliness. Also required are Alison Bechdel’s graphic memoir Fun Home, Joe Sacco and Christopher Hitchens’ journalistic Safe Area Gorazde: The War in Eastern Bosnia, Lynda Barry’s award-winning 100 Demons, and the complex City of Glass, written in part by Paul Karasik, who visited the class.

No longer relegated to the ever-ridiculed comic book store, graphic novels delve deeper into the human experience, rarely feature a superhero and are now popping up with regularity in libraries and book stores. Many graphic novels have even garnered major literary prizes, including the American Book Award. Wenthe is not the only academic teaching the virtues of comic books. Wake Forest University Sociologist Saylor Breckenridge has researched the subject, studying the relationship between comic books and popular culture.

Wenthe was trained in medieval literature at Duke, Harvard, Oxford, and Yale. His primary research interest – aside from graphic novels – involves international literature of King Arthur, and his current book project has the working title Arthurian Outsiders: The Dynamic of Difference in the Matter of Britain.

American University ( is a leader in global education, enrolling a diverse student body from throughout the U.S. and nearly 150 countries. Located in Washington, D.C., the university provides opportunities for academic excellence, public service and internships in the nation’s capital and around the world.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Dove McHargue of SCAD's class in Arlington

On Friday night, my daughter and I got over to the Arlington Art Center about an hour after Dove McHargue started his class, Black and White Sequential Art -- The placement of compositional blacks. I had just planned to introduce myself and leave, but the class was well underway with about 10 students, including one dad who was there with his son. Dove was under the weather with a cold, but struggling through it as he showed several powerpoints on using inking to accent art. A lot of examples came from DC's Batman: Black and White books so I picked up volume 2 at a con yesterday. I think I had v.1 already. Dove gave the kids, who were all in high school, (and two dads) four pages from a Disney coloring book and suggested highlighting an element of each of the artwork. This was a very simple exercise to give out, but one that really made the kids (and me) think. There were a bunch of different solutions and Dove pointed out what worked and what didn't, talked about lighting, and was really very instructive. I personally found this absolutely fascinating and I have no desire at all to be a cartoonist. His explanation of how things work on the page was just really interesting. As the kids were working on their pages, he showed one of his black and white comic strips projected, and then how to color it with Photoshop - light dawned for me. If you have a chance, sit in on one of his sessions.