Monday, 19 February 2018

Some 3rd Year Comics

3rd Years produce a range of different Comics 

With the course ever expanding, we are always trying to produce different type of art work and getting the student to think more independently. We actively encourage them to develop their own signature art styles so they are able to stand out from the crowd. 
here are some of the work produced in the first semester. 

Akka Moons "Infested" is a horror story about a virus that is running wild in the forest. They style is created digitally after  the initial drawn thumbnails and layout sketches. I particularly like this page as it looks a bit more in-depth with the concept of paneling and what you can use to divide the story up, rather then going to the default method of boxing everything up!  

Ben Bloss's work is also mainly digital once the thumbnails and layout are complete. He has drawn inspiration from Manga and in his Comic Book "The Lonely Siren" he tells the story of a shipwrecked sailor and the unwanted advances of a Siren. Ben uses the page well, preparing the reader for the drop into the abyss. He's recently gone back and reworked his pages, adding shading and shadow to the work which give the whole project a bit more weight.  

Ollie Wharton's comic "Roller Disco" tells the story of 2 young girls who find and lose love at the venue. What is particularly great about this work is the backgrounds where he has tried to incorporate his more painted style to the overall concept. this give the work a more staged and worn feel. Everything doesn't look band new. The texture in the background starts to become a character in its own right as it tries to describe the story and the environment where the action takes place. 

Wednesday, 14 February 2018

Top Middle Bottom

Drawing Exercise 
Top, Middle, Bottom 

Once again the new 1st year were introduced to life drawing at Staffordshire University with a difference. We challenge the student to attempt to make a film noir style of comic using a basic script and a model in a room with props and lights. 


The idea is to get the students to physically move their bodies around the model, rather than, as what usually happens, where the students get an easel and they stay in the same location. Even if the students have a really bad view of the model they will rather draw a bad pose than to physically move themselves around the model. 

Film Noir is something that many of the students today have not really encountered and even though we spend a lot of time talking about shadow and the power of that and what it can add to a drawing, students still tend to stay away from it. 

Above the lighting and aim of the lesson is to explore how we can tell the story. In each shot the student had to make a decision of whether to drawn from above, at the same level or from the floor in a sitting position. 

The final scene where the model packs her bag to leave, gives the student to leave a really interesting climax to the story.

Below are some of the attempts that the first year did during the 3 hours session. What the story is, is completely up to the student.  We encourage them to make decisions about the character on the page, is she the victim, who has managed to get away from an attacker and needs to leave as soon as possible.  Or is she the evil person, a potential murder who has committed the crime and now has to get out as soon as possible.  



Monday, 12 February 2018

3rd Years Mini One Day Exhibition

A mini One Day Exhibition

As third years the work load goes through the roof. Along with that the pressures of putting on your own degree show is especially stressful. To try and compensate this, we at Staffordshire University Cartoon and Comic Arts, implemented a mini One Day Exhibition to allow students to get used to presenting their work. We encouraged the students to think outside the box with ideas about their work. We also build an bit of a spare wall for the students to display on. 

Ok, probably not the best spread in the world, but it went, and it encouraged students to come along and join in with the event, i was happy that a few Fine Art students who were working late in the studio also came and joined in the fun.  


 The initial aim was to get the students to hang what they thought was their best work from the first semester. This meant that they had to mount work and learn about putting it up. 

Having moved onto the Mezzanine in the old Fine Arts area, this gave us an opportunity to use the layout, which is primarily an exhibition space anyway.

We had a mock day where we laid out the work and had a bit of a party, to welcome back students straight after the Christmas break and a this also allowed students from various years a chance to work/talk/and interact with one another. 

Off the success of the exhibition, it was decided to hold a proper curated event in the Uni UniQube along College Road on Monday 19th February at 5.30pm 

So I look forward to telling you more about that when we start to put it together soon. 

Wednesday, 7 February 2018

Christmas Fair

2nd Years Christmas fair 

Cartoon and Comic Arts team up with Illustration students 

For the second year running, Cartoon and Comic arts Students team up with Illustration students as part of their Visual Storytelling module to produce a Christmas fair. The students were given an audio book that had gone out of copyright as a starting point for this project. So from Wuthering Heights to Dorian Gray the students had a lot to go at. 

The point of the project was to prepare the students to working in a consumer lead environment. It made them think about their intended audience as actual people rather than trying to produce something to get marks and graded. It pushed them into areas of learning about advertising and marketing their work. Students had to get used to talking to their customers about their work and had to learn how to engage with the general public. 


The students arrived early to set up the area. People had different ideas about how they wanted their tables to look and some had gone the extra mile to demonstrate their eagerness to produce and sell work at the event.

Table set up still on going 

illustration student Joe and Cartoonist Carl team up to run thier stand. Joe had "Lord of the Flies" as his book and Cart and "Matilda" 

Two mature comic artist Shaun "The Hobbit" and Conan "Matilda" on their stand. Shaun was also drawing sketches and Conan had an additional surprise for his stall 

A 3rd year student Drew Hird, popped across to give advice on how to sell their work to Emily and Rebecca. 

 International Man of mystery Josh "Jeckyl and Hyde" helps to run his and Sarah's stand at the event.

Mike is joined by his mate to help run his and Joe Assi, while Joe is on patrol around the event.  

Millie and Diana work on louring people to their stand. 

The illustration students were really up for the challenge of running a table at the event. they produced some really novel stuff, like the screen printed tote bags.  

Danielle and Seren work on their pitch to get customers over to the table. Danielle used her cosplay to great effect at the event. 

Another 2 illustration students who did really well at the event and produced some really good work. 

Danielle hold fort for herself and Lawrence 

Jasmin and Scarlett made the perfect team 

Max the Pirate made his mark with a couple of illustration students 

Acouple of third year students were keen to make their mark at the event, and try to relive their first attempt at running a stall at a Christmas event  

Hidden away, Millie and Vicky working behind the scenes

Tom manning his table 

Elliot and Laura working their table 

One of the most unusual stalls, Katie and Gee running their stands where Gee made Dracula Capes for Cats to wear.! 

Strike a pose with Meg and Alex 

Finally Ellie on her stall doing the business

At the door greeting people were AckwardBex and myself.