SESSION: MAKING A GRAPHIC NOVEL
In the following sessions, graphic novels took centre-stage as Ajit Kumar (currently a PhD student in Visual Arts at the School of Arts and Aesthetics, JNU) conducted a series of exercises directed at helping the children make story-boards, which introduced them to the concept of narrative in drawing. Each learner created a four-scene graphic strip contained in one (or a maximum of two) page(s) that visually reflected a personal experience. To be able to conceive a ‘story’ out of the everyday happenings in their lives was a novel concept for the children that was met with much enthusiasm. They understood stories like the ones in their textbooks, as was evidently manifest in their resulting works. This was challenging, but helped them develop a sense of ‘how the world works’ on paper.
Drawing, writing (including self-corrections of spelling & grammar with help) and dividing the space of the page into appropriate portions for text and visuals took time. To be able engage with a long exercise was another challenge which the children tried to overcome, now having reached a stage where they could sustain their attention span for a relatively longer period than before. Their stories/graphics are being planned for compilation into a book-form which could then part of their reading material in the future.