Once again, I am learning from mentor texts. Grant Snider’s layouts and style heavily influenced the look of this comic and others I have created. And the book The Gutsy Girl, by Caroline Paul (writer) and Wendy MacNaughton (artist) continues to be the perfect mentor text for me, for both the content (adventures!) and the style (funny!).
Every my Tuesday Two Writing Teachers colleagues and I host the Slice of Life Story Challenge. Teachers from all around the world participate in sharing a story each week. My current writing goal is to create a comic each week. To see all my comics, click here.
*Updated after publishing to mention my mentor texts and inspiration!
This week, I drew inspiration from another of my favorite mentor authors. Wendy MacNaughton’s work inspires me to use comics to make sense of the chaos of daily life.
I was inspired, once again, by Grant Snider’s beautiful work at Incidental Comics.
People often joke that Subaru Outbacks are the “official car of Vermont.” As a kid, I longed for my family to fit in with other families by owning a Subaru. There really are a lot of them here. When I Iived in New York City, every time I saw a Subaru Outback, I would have a sharp little pang of homesickness.
Now, I own a silver Outback. What you see here happens to me a lot. It happened to me yesterday, as a matter of fact, and when I was scrolling through Facebook later in the day, a friend posted that something similar had happened to her—followed by a string of comments from local friends sharing their similar experiences of hopping in the wrong car, trying to unlock other people’s cars, waving to strangers driving by in cars that match friends’ cars, and so on. I guess I’ve finally accomplished my dream of fitting in.
To create this comic I was surprised at how challenging it was to use color. Most of my comics so far have either been black-line outlines, or just very spare amounts of color. I like the way the cars and the grocery cart came out — but I don’t love the grocery store or the person I drew. There’s a lot I plan to do differently next time.
So far this month, all of my comics have been lighthearted—the form lends itself well to that. However, all my favorite comic authors find a way to capture a range of emotions. I haven’t been able to do that with comics, so far, and I wanted to push myself to give it a try. Once again, I looked to Grant Snider at Incidental Comics as my mentor. Here’s my first attempt at a comic that is less funny. (I already have about six ideas for revision as I’m hitting “Publish.”)
For today’s comic, I studied a mentor author. Grant Snider at Incidental Comics, who has inspired me for years. He often creates comics about being a writer, and they’ve always resonated with me. Now, I see his work in a new way—as a comic creator. This was my first time using color.