Draw Out the Story: Ten Secrets to Creating Your Own Comics

Brian McLachlan, Illustrator
Brian McLachlan. Owlkids (PGW, dist.), $18.95 (144p) ISBN 978-1-926973-83-8
Paperback - 143 pages - 978-1-77147-003-2
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Comics creator McLachlan outlines 10 secrets, from “Comics let you show and tell” to “Go beyond the normal,” as he encourages readers to try their hand at graphic storytelling. He opens with a discussion of “comics grammar” (explaining conventions like speech balloons, panels, and caption boxes), then moves into discussions of styles and genres, the use of details and color, how to give drawings personality, and developing one’s ideas. McLachlan’s comics appear throughout to, well, illustrate his points; in a section about telling “complex or deep stories with simple art,” a yellow circle with black lines for rays appears near an ornately rendered sun (“Again, that doesn’t mean the story with the second kind of sun will be better”). It’s a useful and accessible primer for the next generation of comics artists and writers. Ages 8–12. (Sept.)
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