2000-06-10 / Columnists

From the Artists Studio

 


Rockaway Artists Alliance

RAA instructor Kevin Brown (left) and class 7-22 teacher Fran Patella (right) with students: (bottom row) Al Ellerbe, Edward Pishchik, Vincent Mascarella, (top row) Leo Sampson, Sheldon Pinnock, Curtis Charles, Richard Leger, and Christopher Wiecha. Not pictured are Desi Vasquez, Shawn West, and Armen Nikocevic.
RAA instructor Kevin Brown (left) and class 7-22 teacher Fran Patella (right) with students: (bottom row) Al Ellerbe, Edward Pishchik, Vincent Mascarella, (top row) Leo Sampson, Sheldon Pinnock, Curtis Charles, Richard Leger, and Christopher Wiecha. Not pictured are Desi Vasquez, Shawn West, and Armen Nikocevic.

 

You would be amazed by how much can be learned from creating a three-frame comic strip. Kevin Brown teaches cartooning for the Rockaway Artists Alliance. Last week I accompanied him on his final session with class 7-22 at I.S. 78 Roy H. Mann School in Brooklyn. Brown had the students create the characters, theme, plot, dialogue and layout of their strips. He and the class then analyzed the results. What follows are comments written by Ms. Fran Patella, the teacher of class 7-22. All I will add are the photographs and a big thank you to Ms. Patella and to these terrific young men who impressed me so with their talent. They reminded me that success is defined in the effort.

"It took out my true feelings," Richard explained. This was among the many comments made by a group of specialized and select boys from Roy H. Mann. They were fortunate to experience the talents of Mr. Kevin Brown, a cartoonist from the Rockaway Artists Alliance who agreed to introduce the boys to the world of comic strips.

All the boys agreed that this was an experience they enjoyed. They learned about effort and teamwork. More and more they became aware of the mechanics of creating. They used shapes, backgrounds and dialogue to create a theme or message.

"I learned how to create faces and expressions and it made me aware of sequencing," [said] Sheldon. Leo added that it reminded him never to give up trying. Al learned about the art of backgrounds. Vincent retorted that he realized that something only appears difficult but when you practice it, then it is fun. "I learned how to draw muscles," Sheldon added. To Christopher, cartooning made him aware that shapes can form personalities and that it wasn’t necessary to be perfect. "I learned that cartoons have messages," Curtis added. "Mr. Brown taught me how to do something I never did before." Ed stated, "We had fun picking out our favorite character." Thank you, Mr. Brown.

 

 

 

By Susan Hartenstein

From The Artists Studio

 

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