Comics and Illustration Workshops

These popular workshops teach art skills and character development as well as benefiting reluctant readers. Available in and around London and North Kent.

Children creating characters during my 'Record Breakers' comics and graphic novels workshop at Southwark Culture Space  Secondary school pupils learning to draw Big Nate with Emily

Age Groups

Sessions can be adapted to any age group from reception to teen.

Current Themes

Current themes for comics and graphic novels workshops include ‘Record Breakers’, ‘Create Your Own Hero’, and ‘Myths and Legends’. For teens, either ‘Manga’ or ‘Diary’. Illustration workshops can be based on the Kate Greenaway medal shortlist or a Roald Dahl theme. The children learn to draw a character step by step and create their own storyboard for a picture book.

Poster I created to promote my comics and graphic novels workshops. 'Create Your Own Hero' workshop featuring my own illustrations   Graphic novel posters and books  A selection of Graphic novels that fall within the myths and legends theme

Structure

In a typical comics and GN workshop I demonstrate an ‘add on’ drawing game with the help of two volunteers, as a simple and fun way to create new characters. The children get into small groups to play the game.

Children creating characters on a flip chart  Character created through a drawing game

We learn to draw a popular character such as Big Nate or Superman, or one of my own characters. I draw the character on the board and the children follow step by step.

Emily teaching children how to draw Big Nate  Workshop with Brown's School  Member of Bexleyheath Library's Arts Award group holding up a ghostly mouse she has learned to draw

We discuss the way different types of comic book characters look, for example, traditional superheroes may be tall and serious, comedy heroes have a funny pet or sidekick, anti-heroes could look mysterious with dark glasses. The children create their own character – they can come up with anything they like. I walk around offering help and support.

Book cover: 'How to Draw Superman'  Book cover: Captain Underpants  Book cover: 'Artemis Fowl and the Arctic Incident' graphic novel

If they finish quickly they can create a character sheet inspired by the examples I show them. For an alternative workshop children will create a comic strip at this stage.

Sessions usually last 1 hr – 1 hr 15 mins.

Child creating a comic strip  Pupil creating a character sheet

What’s provided?

I come in half an hour before the workshop to set up. I provide black fine line pens, HB pencils, rubbers and sharpeners.

I require a flipchart or whiteboard, plenty of A4 paper and some colouring pens or pencils (if available). I will also email some handouts to be photocopied (in association with The Phoenix Comic).

I run the entire workshop either alone or with some assistance depending on numbers. I am CRB checked and registered with the DBS Update Service.

Fees vary depending on how many workshops are booked during a day. If you would more information, please contact me to discuss your needs.

Phoenix comic activity sheet: create your own villain     Phoenix comic activity sheet: fill in the speech bubbles