Friday, January 8, 2010


Facilitators: Avy, Raghu, Ramanna

9.30 am -10.00 am – Introduction to the course
What we will engage with – the things that make for quality: Sensitivity-Sensibility-Skills-Storytelling
10.00 am -10.30 am – Frederick Back/Mighty River video
Short discussion on treatment of the animated film, returning to forms in art and then appropriating and employing them with sensitivity and purpose.
10.30 am - 11.15 am - Reading One - Truth Be Told: Authorship and the Creation of the Black Captain America by STANFORD W. CARPENTER
11.15 am – 12 noon – 6 groups present their understanding of the Reading they did.
12 noon to 12.30 pm - Reading parts of Black Captain America, quick identification of several devices like dialogue, the style, the cuts, flashback, themes being referred to, etc
12.30 pm-1.45 pm- Lunch Break
1.45 pm to 4 pm - Drawing exercises, short discussion on portrait and caricature
Drawing exercises
1. Gesture drawings in Class (30 minutes each one not more than one minute)
2. Take five of your gesture drawings and turn them into solid drawings (30 minutes)
3. Look at your own face in your ID card and draw it as a portrait. (30 minutes)
4. Now exaggerate, transform your portrait into a caricature (30 minutes).


1. 30 Sketches to be brought in every Friday (sketchbook with 250 sketches minimum will be assessed at end of course for levels of progress – partly gestural, may use only lines, capture the essence of whatever you are sketching, think/capture proportion, scale, change medium if you like to keep interest levels)
(Ramana/Raghu – give guidelines on what sort of sketches they should bring in)
2. Collect a set of 10 different single-frame cartoons and categorise them under five themes.
3. Collect a set of 10 different caricatures and study how well or badly they represent the source.
4. The cartoons you collect, the explorations you do, your notes and observations, etc should go into a Visual Journal. (Visual Journal will be assessed at the end of the course.)
5. Having analysed your caricatures and single frame cartoon, do a single-frame cartoon or a good caricature of your choice. See what happens. Decide whether or not you need to use comment, dialog within the frame or outside the frame.
If you are smart enough, integrate a caricature into your single-frame cartoon.

DISCUSSION ON "truth" by the 6 groups

1. Sneha,Sayantoni, Varun, Tiya, Rima

Character becomes more important than the author.
Authorial intentionality vs Interpretation.
Connection to reality
Authenticity – genuine
Audience is not necessarily racially biased. Receptivity.
Built on literature that has gone before so racism is subconscious.
Comic book assembly line – reality of market economics.
Collaboration – reaching consensus in the creation of the product.

2. Deboo, Sarvari, Sargam, Neeti, Akshata

Using the character as “lens” - does lens reach or isolate a target audience?
Directing a situation
Character-issue-character (which comes first?) Combo Bill vs Capt America
Ownership – Intent – Interpretation
Different POVs coming together into synergy/synchronicity

3. Mitalee, Samvida, Tisha, Disha, Pallak

Becoming aware of your own context/history/background
Selection of frames of reference
You can break from your frame of reference
Who decides what? History the story of the victor?
Does war make the “human” or “humanity” universal?
Process of comic book making?
Keeping the comic book as ‘text’ – a story.
Verbal text/Visual text
Visual responses/Video responses

4. Manasi, Divya, Aparupa, Rajasee, Sadhvi, Mimansa

Knowing the audience and doing it for them – Clues the can relate to.
Technical – the issue of color (what a black/brown person does to hues/background/foregrounding)
Research – leaving you torn between facts and writing the story
Agreeing on the basics – leveraging strengths and leaving
Different beliefs – common goal
Style – the medium they chose failed at one level but succeeded elsewhere. Testing change.
Comics for children – and now for Collectors
Simpler – Sophisticated
Coming back to how the language itself works beyond just effect.
Feel and look and effect vs construction.
Issue of uncomfortable truth and how it is presented in a familiar and less abrasive form.

William Kotzwinkle – Doctor Rat

5. Bharat, Aniruddh, Maanvi, Emma, James, Anurag

Commodification of ideas
Give an audience the essence of the idea.
Audience a secondary thing – it depends where the author comes from.
Contentwise, the author privileges the story.
Medium allows you to leverage many aspect.
Marvel – the giant corporation controlling the production. Could an independent author have got this far with this story?
Economics – how does it control expression?
The medium makes the story more accessible.
Addressing issues and how it relates to product – race.
The personnel who write/create long running series keep changing.
Power hierarchy within artists.

6. Sumit and Sanjam

Responsibility of author and that of the enterprise.
Centre and Margins
Questioning a fallacy/stereotype (blacks are always criminals)

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