Group Critique Night: Stories & Storytelling
September 30th's meeting focused on storytelling critique, from the pitch to the page. Our dedicated members came in with pages and scripts they were working on, from fully colored pages to thumbnails. We split into three groups, with each sitting in a circle to discuss each others' work. Everyone chipped in, giving helpful ideas to their fellow cartoonists and kicking off our group critique series with a fabulous start.
One storytelling problem that came up often in my group was clarity. Sometimes the content of a panel or even the border were hard to grasp, and with discussion, ideas were brought out to create a stronger composition. Variation in viewpoints was also a big item, as many people seemed to be fond of shots cut off at the chest or waist. Together, we worked to come up with more dynamic angles. At times, we veered off into drawing critique, though if a drawing is distracting or unclear, it can lead to a muddled story, so it all goes hand in hand. The majority of pages brought in were in pencil, making it easier to fix errors quickly. The stories people brought in were very interesting, ranging from sci-fi and fantasy (or, in one case, a parody crossover of the two) to stories grounded in real life. Some even managed to add supernatural or science fiction elements to ordinary events, such as a bike ride or going to a comic book convention.
Hayley Weber is a junior cartooning major who hails from the most boring part of New Jersey. To distract herself from this sad fate, she reads and draws girly comic books, watches weird British TV shows, and stalks her favorite bands.