Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Comic Books and Graphic Novels ~Part One

I am really excited. I learned a new program called Comic Life. It is a comic book/graphic novel building program; it has templates from all sorts of ages of comics from the 40's, 60's, 00's etc and graphic novel templates, and all you do is drag the template onto the "stage" and you can move around the frames and insert words, dialogue bubbles, think bubbles, story boxes, etc. There are many filters as well that will change your pictures you insert, to look a certain way. There are filters to make a picture to look like it was drawn with colored pencils, to look like marvel comics, etc. It is really neat!! Another cool feature of this program is the "drag-and-drop" ability from google images. No longer having to copy and paste, you can drag the image into the program and drop it into a frame. You can move the picture around inside the frame to edit it, taking away the time of cropping a photo in another program first.

With my CPT 20 students I gave them an assignment to create a 18-20 page graphic novel and my CPT 10 students to create a 12-15 page comic book. I think most are really excited to begin the assignment. I am making them develop a story (it can be based on anything from a character in a book or movie's untold story, to re-developing characters from an existing comic/graphic book [i.e. scuba steve], to re-telling an actual event, to a brand new story with a new set of characters and conflicts). The possibilities are endless. I know I am very excited to see what they come up with - the CPT 10 students so far have a good start on their ideas, and the CPT 20 students have a planning class tomorrow, so we will see how far they get on developing their ideas.

I created one on my own during a prep one day. I created an introduction page to the untold story of "Bootstrap" Bill Turner from the Pirates of the Caribbean movies. It was just an example to show the kids, but to tell you the truth I wish I could do this assignment myself! I hope my excitement and enthusiasm is infectious and the kids catch it!

I will keep you posted!