One summer I took a cartooning class led by Ian Sampson at the University of the Arts. This class was cartooning boot camp with drills meant to get creative juices flowing. Our homework assignments came from Lynda Barry’s Syllabus: Notes from an Accidental Professor and Ivan Brunetti’s Cartooning: Philosophy and Practice. As a final project, everyone in the class made a mini book to share. My creation of Lola originated with this project. Here is my first Lola cartoon.
After the cartooning class, I started writing a monthly six-panel cartoon book to entertain my students and to hand out at conferences. Creating the monthly cartoon helped me practice making consistent characters and brainstorm topics to write about. The excerpt below is a summary of my characters. The six-panel cartoon that follows is one example of the mini books I created.
Lola is a spunky and precocious seven-year-old whose adventures and misadventures with her five-year-old brother Louie create an engaging visual storyline for readers and non-readers alike. Each book is a pictorial representation of an event that urges the reader or pre-reader to imagine the narrative.
As the project grew, I asked a friend to make Lola and Louie dolls to use as promotions for my series. I also changed the format and focus of my cartoons to a three-panel cartoon that uses the seasons of the year to generate content. The resulting cartoons are available on Instagram: #lolaandlouiecartoon