It's Go Time!

by hatdow, Flickr.comby hatdow, Flickr.com
Time to play the ancient strategy game, that is! Saturday February 5, 2011 from 3:30 pm to 5:30 pm at Traverwood Branch, Michael Zhang of the University of Michigan Go Club and his super-crew will offer an introduction to Go -- at the same time the simplest and the most complex game of strategy on Earth.

As Iwamoto Kaoru -- a 9-dan professional Go player -- said "Go uses the most elemental materials and concepts -- line and circle, wood and stone, black and white -- combining them with simple rules to generate subtle strategies and complex tactics that stagger the imagination." Need I say more?

If you're interested in learning more about Go before coming to play it with us, check out Go by Charles Matthews, Go Basics by Peter Shotwell, or, perhaps the most entertaining introduction, Hikaru no Go -- a manga series about a young teen haunted by the ghost of a Go master.

Comic Artists Forum: Paint with Your Computer

Jared SledJared Sled

Meet in the 3rd floor Computer Training Center for guest artist Jerzy Drozd’s presentation, “Paint with Your Computer”. In this hands-on session, you’ll learn how to digitally prep your black and white illustrations for publishing and discover some easy tips for using Adobe Photoshop Elements to add a splash of color! Jerzy will demonstrate some basic image editing techniques followed by an exploration of some of the handy coloring techniques used in professional comic book coloring. Materials will be provided, but you are welcome to bring your own artwork to be scanned and used during the session.

For those of you who also want to spend some time drawing and sharing with fellow cartoonists, tables will be set up next door in the AADL Free Space room.

Comic Artists Forum | Sunday, February 6 | 1-3 PM | Downtown-3rd Floor Computer Training Center | Grade 6-Adult

Cyber-Safety Series -- Copyrights ...and Wrongs?

image by dimitri c, sxc.huimage by dimitri c, sxc.hu
Copyright is an issue that often goes undiscussed in talks about cyber-safety. As the recording industry cracks down on intellectual property violations, a culture of ripping remixing, and mashups continues to grow. An intriguing development is the growth of Creative Commons – an alternative to copyright in which the creators of artistic and literary works decide for themselves how others can use their work. I’m not going to lie; I am a real fan of creative commons! If you enjoy remixing or need audio, video or visual content for your projects, using creative commons materials simplifies the process enormously – and you get to participate in a reciprocal community of artists and creators. What's not to like?

Here are some resources to help find creative commons and public domain content.

Photos: Every Stock Photo, Stock.Xchng and Wylio.
Music and sound effects: ccmixter, Incompetech, Beatpick and the Internet Archive.
Video: The Internet Archive’s stock footage database and SocialBrite.org.
More Info: The Public Domain and this list of 30 creative commons sources.

To learn more about the issue, try these.

Watch:
Copyright Criminals
Rip! A Remix Manifesto

Read:
Bound By Law? – A graphic novel about a filmmaker’s copyright woes.
Piracy: The Intellectual Property Wars from Gutenberg to Gates
Remix: Making Art and Commerce Thrive in the Hybrid Economy
The Pirate’s Dilemma
Viral Spiral

AADL programs provide inspiration!

If you live hereIf you live here

Jannie Ho who participated in last summer's AADL Comics Fundamentals six-week workshop recently announced on her blog that she has finished her first comics story for the Sketch Book Project. In the epilogue, she thanks Comics Fundamental instructor Jerzy Drozd whose question sparked the idea for her book, If You Lived Here. And now Jannie’s book will tour the country before joining the book collection of The Brooklyn Art Library.

Pretty cool huh? If you want to develop your visual storytelling ideas join the next Comics Fundamentals six-week workshop. It will meet on Wednesdays July 6-August 10 (6:00-8:00 p.m.).

The Night Bookmobile

You may already be familiar with Audrey Niffenegger, author of best-selling works such as The Time Traveler’s Wife and Her Fearful Symmetry. What you might not be familiar with is Niffenegger’s newest publication, The Night Bookmobile. Initially serialized in the UK newspaper, The Guardian, The Night Bookmobile is her first graphic novel. Topping out at 40 pages, the graphic novel could be called a “graphic novelette”. But this short work really packs a punch, and the artwork is unique and endearing.

The story is about a young woman who, after a fight with a boyfriend, takes a walk in the middle of the night and encounters a night bookmobile, with a night librarian, too! Contained in the traveling library is every book she has ever read, even going all the way back to Pat the Bunny. A strange story follows, and it is indeed thought-provoking to say the least, especially for those involved in library work, and anybody who has ever truly loved to read. Some have criticized the work - but you be the judge. For myself, I think I will be a little haunted by this one for years to come.

Take Part in Art -- Art that Tells a Story

by "T" altered art, Flickr.comby "T" altered art, Flickr.com

People have been using pictures to tell stories since…well, forever! Cave paintings, illuminated manuscripts, and the Bayeux Tapestry are all ancestors of modern picture books and graphic novels. To explore the relationship between art and storytelling, you could always come visit the Youth Art Table downtown, or enjoy our abundant and awesome resources at home.

Some excellent artists – modern and historical – have focused on using art to tell stories. To learn more about these artists try reading:
Brueghel: A Gift for Telling Stories – about the life of Dutch artist Pieter Brueghel.
En mi Familia and Family Pictures by Mexican-American artist Carmen Lomas Garza.
Pretty much anything about Norman Rockwell.

To explore how artists tell stories using pictures, try these books.
Telling Stories in Art by Joy Richardson provides examples readers can use to create their own story in art!
Understanding Comics by Scott McCloud describes how graphic novelists use pictures to tell their stories, and Drawing Words and Writing Pictures by Jessica Abel guides readers in creating their own graphic novels!
Read a wordless picture book to see how amazing a story without words can be.

If you have children ages 4-7, you can also attend one of the University of Michigan Museum of Art’s Storytime in the Museum programs starting January 8. University of Michigan students read stories related to the art on display at the museum to bring art to life!

Finally, to see how art can tell different stories to different people try Twice Told -- a collection of short stories based on paintings. The twist? Each painting inspires two stories by different authors. See how different stories based on the same picture can be! What story would you tell?

Comic Artists Forum: Make a Mini-Comic with Matt Feazell

Matt Feazell 2Matt Feazell 2

At the next Forum create your own 8-page mini-comic with the guidance of freelance cartoonist Matt Feazell. His comics and spot illustrations have appeared in Disney Adventures and Nickleodeon Magazine and his regular weekly series, The Amazing Cynicalman runs every week in the Hamtramck Review newspaper. He's currently writing and directing a live-action Cynicalman movie.

Afterwards take time to chat and share your work with fellow cartoonists or draw while listening to other cartoonists as they discuss techniques. Basic drawing supplies will be available.

Comic Artists Forum | Sunday, January 9 | 1:00-3:00 PM | Downtown Library | Grades 6-Adult

Comic Artists Forum features Star Wars artist Katie Cook

Katie CookKatie Cook

The Forum moves Downtown in December. Join us in the Multipurpose Room for a presentation by Katie Cook who does licensed work for Star Wars products, webcomics for The Clone Wars, The Lord of the Rings, DC Comics, Marvel Comics, Heroes and Fraggle Rock. She’s also the creator of the webcomic Gronk: A Monster’s Story.

Afterwards take time to chat and share your work with fellow cartoonists or draw while listening to other cartoonists as they discuss techniques. Basic drawing supplies will be available.

Comic Artists Forum | Sunday, December 5 | 1:00-3:00 PM | Downtown | Grade 6 – Adult

Author Birthdays: Atwood, Foster, Moore

November 18th marks the birthday of authors Margaret Atwood, Alan Dean Foster, and Alan Moore.

Margaret Atwood is a Canadian writer who has won many literary awards, including the Arthur C. Clarke Award for The Handmaid's Tale and the Booker Prize for The Blind Assassin. She has also published novels like The Penelopiad, a reworking of Homer's Odyssey that focuses on Penelope, and The Tent, a collection of short stories and line drawings.

Atwood has also written many books of poetry. Among them are The Door, published in 2007 and discussing the topic of old age, and True Stories, which is dedicated to fellow poet Carolyn Forché and focuses on the subject of human rights.

Alan Dean Foster is an American sci-fi and fantasy writer. Among his numerous series are Flinx and the Commonwealth, Dinotopia, Spellsinger, and The Taken Trilogy.

Singular novels by Foster include Quozl, a tale of alien "invasion", which Booklist has called "entertaining and even comic at times without being frivolous", and Parallelities, a story of parallel worlds in which the main character, Max, finds himself many times over.

Alan Moore is an English writer and popular adult graphic novelist. His most popular works would probably be the graphic novels Watchmen and V for Vendetta, both of which were made into films. He has won many awards for his works, including the Jack Kirby Award, the Eagle Award, and the Harvey Award.

Moore has also written many other adult graphic novels. From Hell and The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, like Watchmen, were turned into films as well. The Ballad of Halo Jones, categorized as a "feminist space opera", tells the story of Halo Jones and her need to escape her boring, futuristic world. Promethea, another one set around a superheroine, has been noted to be "awash in references to mythology, literature, religion, and arcania".

Norwegian cartoonist Kim Holm Discusses Comics Publishing in the New Media Century

Kim HolmKim Holm

Join us Monday, November 22 from 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm at the Malletts Creek Branch for a fresh view on the debate over the future of copyright during this interactive discussion with Norwegian cartoonist Kim Holm. Does copyright law ensure innovation and personal creativity, or does it steal from the public domain? While digital piracy is claimed to be an inevitability by some and a threat to capitalism by others, Kim has embraced the distribution methods used by pirates to broaden his audience. He has explored publishing models that altogether eschew the use of copyright, releasing his work into the public domain as a digital edition while simultaneously selling print editions on his website. During this presentation Kim will raise some provocative counter-arguments to commonly-held beliefs about current copyright law, exploring some of the ways it may be improved, if not discarded altogether.

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