Telling a Story in Pictures--with Help from Some Talented Art Students

Communicating with words—that’s what I learned to do as an undergraduate English major. My professors trained me to read, speak, and write, and I’m better for it. But as any good art student knows, words are not the only means of communication. This year, junior art majors Gerard Gayle and Melissa Puma have been teaching me how to communicate with images.

Gerard Gayle and Melissa Puma Melissa and Gerard are participating in an independent study facilitated by the Leonard Lief Library (where I work) and the Art Department. They’re collaborating on a web comic that we hope will be both entertaining and educational.

For Gerard and Melissa, it’s a chance to simulate the experience of producing work for a client (the Library), while also benefiting from the one-on-one guidance of their creative and generous professors Michael Ferraro and Robert Wurzburg.

At our last meeting, both students brought storyboards for the comic, which Prof. Wurzburg asked them to draw on index cards. It was a smart idea because as a group we could move the cards around to try out different configurations. I was inspired by how the students' visual choices brought out new aspects of the story.


Melissa even recommended a book to help me learn more about storytelling in comics: Scott McCloud’s Understanding Comics (FYI: we don't own it at the Lehman Library, so I ordered it through CLICS). It looks like a great read.

I hope you’ll check out our web comic when it’s ready. We’re shooting for summer 2012.

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