IA-0206 Reading and Creating Comics: Graphic Storytelling in the Real World
T/TH 2:40-4:00—Fall 2020
Remote instruction

(Possibly in-person with TA in FPH 108. MASKS MANDATORY*.)

Uzma Aslam Khan (she/her), ukhan@hampshire.edu,
Office hours: T/TH by appointment

Teaching Assistants:
Reba Goldin (she/her), rfg18@hampshire.edu
Mortimer (Mort) Vallianos (they/them) mav17@hampshire.edu

“Seeing comes before words. The child looks and recognizes before it can speak.” --John Berger Ways of Seeing

Course Description
Welcome to our workshop! We will read and create comics, with an emphasis on comics rooted in autobiographical stories, as well as narratives of displacement that are both non-fiction and fiction. Because comics are primarily a visual medium, as much time will be spent considering the visual and artistic choices of the creators as discussing their thematic elements. The same is true for your own work, which will be workshopped for its visual as much as written inventiveness. However, this is a creative writing class, not a drawing class, which means you will not be given drawing instruction. It doesn’t matter if you cannot draw well! Lots of “professional” comics artists are limited in their visual skills. What matters is that you learn to see what these artists are doing, through trying it yourself. In other words, what matters is your devotion to a steady learning practice. In addition to creating comics, course requirements will include keeping up with the reading, regular attendance, in-class presentations and participation, and a thorough commitment to the work of your peers.
Please note: This class is not suited to students with an interest in superhero comics. Though superhero comics continue to dominate the form, NO superhero comics will be read, accepted, or workshopped in this class.
Also note: Though the course is not by instructor permission, students MUST attend the first class in order to keep their seats. There is a high demand for this course, so please be considerate and drop the class after the first day to make room for students on the wait list.
Students are expected to spend at least 6-8 hours/week outside class time on work that includes but isn’t limited to reading, drawing, writing, and preparing for presentations.