Friday, 5 November 2010

"The Comic Book Guys" - Graphic Novel Presentation

Synergy Credit Union recently announced that they were going to be the corporate sponsor for "Graphic Novel" presentations at schools in Neilburg, Lashburn, Maidstone and Marshall.  When I first heard about these presentations I was a little confused as I immediately thought of risque novels with revealing pictures.  I was relieved to learn I wasn't on the right wavelength!

According to an article by Keir Graff in the American Library Association’s Booklist/February 1, 2003, “A graphic novel, like a regular novel, is a stand-alone story that is published as a book. It’s easy to get confused, though, because some people will still use comics for the whole genre or graphic novel for any comic-style work that’s handsomely published, even if it’s just a collection of superhero stories.”

Jay Bardyla (Middle)
Kyle Sams (Left)
Daniel Schneider (Right)
This morning the three men from Edmonton, who were speaking at these events, were at Neilburg Composite School.  The students in Kindergarten to Grade 6 had an assembly at 9 a.m. -- which Alisdair attended.  Later, the students in Grades 7 to 12 also had a chance to learn about graphic novels and the lengthy process followed in the creation of comic books.

Mickey Mikkleson, who works for Synergy Credit Union, introduced Jay Bardyla, the owner/operator of Happy Harbor Comics in Edmonton.  In turn, Bardyla introduced his two assistants - Kyle Sams and Daniel Schneider.  While Jay (who is wearing the Superman t-shirt!) spoke to the students, Kyle and Daniel sketched large colourful pictures of various comic book characters.

"Draw what you see," advised Bardyla. "And develop your own art style."  For the younger group, Bardyla explained how comic books are made and printed. 
Daniel Schneider draws
"I learned from it that in the old, original comic books there were only red, blue, yellow and black inks so if they wanted to make a colour like green, for example, they would have to squish the dots together (so they'd have blue and yellow dots squished together) and then that would create an illusion as if the picture was green," Alisdair told me later.  "But today they have a little over two million colours they can use in a comic book, since it is all done by computer!"

Bardyla told the older students about attending comic book conventions and encouraged students interested in the arts to try creating their own comic books.  This prompted Alisdair to go to to create his own strip titled "Evil Postman"!  Perhaps he will become a famous cartoonist like Charles Schultz!

1 comment:

  1. Did they give you the link? Totally going to do that with the kids. Darren especially will love making a comic strip. Thanks. So many great ideas. -j