No Post Titleon February 4, 2011 at 4:09 pm
COMICS TO TEACH AND INSPIRE
I just wanted to give a quick shout out to the website COMICS ARE GREAT. This site is run by Jerzy Drozd who I am sure most of you know from Art & Story or other comic creation sites and events.
I just love the fact that he is building this foundation for teaching story telling through images. If you think about it more and more that is the main way most of us get our stories; TV, movies, iPad, Smart Phones, etc, etc. And the great thing about comics is that reading is combined with pictures which makes for a great learning tool for young kids on up to adults. Children improve their reading when they read comics and they enjoy. Adults learn about everything from how 300 Spartan’s soldiers took on thousands of Persians in the Battle of Thermopylae to how to assemble a cabinet from IKEA.
I myself overlooked the power and enjoyment of comics for most of my life because all I ever saw were superhero comics. Although I liked them a little I was only drawn to them because of the art work. But once I discovered stuff like Manga and non-superhero American comics I saw what I was missing. Even the re-discovery of Calvin and Hobbes, old Doonesbury books from the 1970’s and Mad magazines opened or re-opened me to the possibilities of telling a story and/or joke in comics. It all sounds elementary I know but this is coming from someone who for a large part of his life read no comics what’s so ever.
Anyway, I think teaching comics as a creative outlet or using comics as a teaching tool are incredibly important. I have a 8 year daughter and I see this first hand. She makes comics and is learning to communicate with others in a way that demands thinking about the audience. She reads a graphic novel like “Smile” and reads it all in almost one sitting. In both circumstances her confidence is boosted; in her ability to created a story that makes sense and is fun to read and in her ability to read a book all the way through quickly. It sounds small but these type of early victories and lessons can set the stage for a young person’s life that are priceless as they say. I should know because my stage (foundation) was not built that strong and I have struggled for years due to this fact.
So hats off to Jerzy and others like him for his work to bring the tools and artistic outlet of comics to young people. This work is important.
Thanks for listening.