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Why Not Comics?

Everyone thinks something different when the word comics is mentioned. For some, they think of the newspapers’ funny pages, such as Calvin and Hobbes, Peanuts, Garfield or Family Circus. Others think of the daring deeds of characters such as Superman, Batman, Spider-Man or The X-Men as they leap of the pages of Marvel and DC Comic books each month.

Yet still others, when manga, the Japanese word for comics comes to mind, think of a range of stories from the slice-of-life tales of two nerdy office workers falling in love, to the action-packed high seas adventure of a pirate crew.

No matter where you are from, or what walk of life you are in, you have almost certainly—at one time or another—come across someone reading a comic or perhaps, even you were the one reading it. There is a simple reason for that. Comics are fun.

It’s not just that they are fun—they are an effective storytelling method. With comics, the punchline can be shown—it doesn’t have to be said. The action that you might have read about in a book, becomes that much more intense. We are able to read the thoughts of the young man falling for his co-worker trying to work up the nerve to talk to her. To put it simply, comics are an effective tool for telling stories.

“To put it simply, comics are an effective tool for telling stories.”

So if comics is such an effective tool for storytelling, why doesn’t everyone read comics? Interestingly enough, it is all dependent on how a culture views them. In Japan, every age group reads comics, and it is widely accepted. Why isn’t that the case in most western cultures?

The primarily hurdle that most people from western cultures have when it comes to reading comics, is that they view it as a medium for children. Therefore, breaking that cultural stereotype can sometimes be difficult. Once broken through, however, most will actually find that they enjoy comics.

Like most forms of storytelling media, the medium of comics affords an excellent opportunity to share one’s beliefs and faith with the world. Whether it is a straight adaptation of the Bible, someone’s biographical story, or something more allegorical, like the works of Lewis and Tolkien, comics is a medium that can help share these stories in a fun way that may otherwise, lose the interest of the reader.

With the Frontier Comic Seminar (FCS), that is what we aim to do—to help people understand how to take their stories and put them onto paper in a visual manner that will be fun to read, and in a way that will make the idea they want to convey easier to understand. Through this, we hope to help usher new artists into a field that needs more faith-based stories that will help to reach the nations. Click here to apply for the FCS which begins June 10th!

- Ian L.

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