Tuesday, August 9, 2011

GUEST BLOG: Robert Atkins on the Intro to Art course

In this guest blog, Robert Atkins, artist on Snake Eyes, GI JOE, and Heroes for Hire, and Instructor of the Comics Experience Introduction to Comic Book Art class, shares his thoughts on the course. Classes will be held live, online, beginning August 30, 2011.

The Intro to Comic Art class provides a great opportunity for me to teach both new and experienced artists about the foundational rules of drawing comics. Within six weeks, you’ll create a portfolio-ready sample story from scratch. We take a professional script and get right to work applying the compositional and storytelling rules gleaned from the lectures each week.

I’ve been teaching this course for over a year now and have had the chance to see many of my students grow throughout the course. Some even come back a second time to put it all into practice again. With each lecture, I’ll lead you through the process of penciling a comic book from start to finish. We’ll also go over cover design and help you create a cover image appropriate to your portfolio sample.

I’ve had the experience of going through the graduate program at the Savannah College of Art and Design’s Sequential Art Department, followed by seven years of work experience drawing monthly comics in the industry. Throughout that time, I’ve found some pretty standard rules that will help you achieve clear storytelling and a finished style that editors are looking for.

Also, during that time, I’ve actively attended many of the comic book conventions across the country and can help advise each student on how to make the most of their convention experience, leading to everyone’s end goal -- getting that job in comics!

I think the class is at its best when supplemented with the Creator’s Workshop offered by Comics Experience. With the Intro to Comic Art class, you’ll get a free month’s access to the Workshop, and I would encourage all the students to make the most of it and explore the site to find how it best suits them. There you can post your work regularly and have industry professionals and other artists comment and critique your work to help you improve.

The Workshop has become a community of like-minded storytellers that are able to encourage and support each other as we all work towards becoming better in our desired fields. If you enjoy the comics art class, the Workshop is the best way to keep that going, as I’m available there to continue working with you as you go on your way.

So, come prepared to do the work! Like most things in life, you’ll get out of the course as much as you put into it. Bring to the class your excitement for comics, and your creativity and ideas, and I'll give you the foundation and tools you’ll need to put your passion into story.

The next session of the live, online Introduction to Comic Book Art class begins August 30, 2011. Enrollment is still open, but seats are limited, so sign up now!

Posted by Rob Anderson
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