How To Make a Jam Comic

In Crafts by Jarod RosellóLeave a Comment


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The Great Big Jam Comic is a COLLABORATIVE cartooning activity taking place on Twitter! It began when five MYSTERY CARTOONISTS created the first five pages.

Cartoonist #1 drew the first page and sent it to Cartoonist #2, who added a page and sent both to Cartoonist #3, who added a page…and so on.

But these first pages are just THE BEGINNING of the story! Now, it’s up to you to tell the rest of the story! This jam comic is MULTI-DIRECTIONAL! Everyone who participates creates a new story strand, departing from page #5.

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Some paper and pencils or pens is all you need. Nothing fancy. You can use colored pencils or crayons or markers. Whatever you like to draw with!

Divide your paper into four equal panels (like the five cartoonists have done), or you can create a page with any number of panels organized in any kind of way.

You can also download and print out the four-panel template! 

DON’T FORGET TO NUMBER YOUR PAGES!

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FOLLOW All The Wonders on Twitter: @_AllTheWonders.

FIND the original #GreatBigJamComic thread (it’ll be pinned at the top).

READ the first five pages, and continue the story at home!

REPLY to the original thread on Twitter with photographs or scans of your pages attached as images. Twitter will allow you to include up to 4 images per post, so you can group them that way to limit the number of threaded replies. Don’t forget to NUMBER YOUR PAGES and use #GreatBigJamComic so we can keep track of all the pages.

You can also CLICK HERE to read the first five pages. 

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If one person is continuing the story, try to finish the story in 2-5 pages!

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If two people are continuing the story, take turns on pages (or on panels within the page) and try to finish the story in 2-5 pages.

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If you have a small group of people, divide the rest of the story up into the number of participants, and assign each person a page. When one person finishes a page, have them pass their page (physically or digitally) to the next person in the group to continue the story. Keep doing this until you’ve gotten to the last person.

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If you have a large group of people, you can break that group into smaller groups and follow the instructions for SMALL GROUP. Or you can work on one big comic! Assign each person in the large group a page number. Pass along the finished pages until the comic is complete!

You can use a Google Doc or a shared folder to add and share your pages as they are completed, and everyone can access the comic as it grows one page at a time.

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Even though the characters have been designed by someone else on the first five pages, it doesn’t mean you have to draw them the same way! Notice how even across the first five pages, the character designs shift and change. This is because every artist has a STYLE, which is kind of like the voice of your drawing. Your drawings should LOOK like you, the same way your voice SOUNDS like you.

You can also add new characters to the story and get rid of characters you don’t want to use.

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Use your story as a way to get characters INTERACTING and RESPONDING to what is going on around them. You should also have your characters CAUSE the action of a story, which means they should do something (on purpose or by accident) that gets the story moving in new and unexpected directions. As you get close to the end of your story, start thinking of ways your characters can RESOLVE the story. Sometimes this means fixing a problem, solving a mystery, defeating a villain, or just learning something new!

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Every story takes place in a setting, which means a articular place and time. The place and time create the CIRCUMSTANCES for your story. The setting tells us what kinds of things your characters might find and interact with. Certain types of stories (intergalactic adventures) require certain types of settings (outer space) in order to exist. Setting also includes WHAT IS POSSIBLE in your story. Is your story REALISTIC? Is your story FANTASTIC? Is your story a COMEDY or a DRAMA or a ROMANCE or a HORROR story? Each of these genres creates a SETTING in which your story takes place. Think about what is possible in the world you are creating and let your story GROW from there!

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