Greg and Meg’s Erasmus adventures

 

Hello Everyone,

Life at the ESA has been busy as ever, sadly I didn’t make it to Angaloume but I enjoyed seeing the photos of some the cheltenham folks trip out there, hopefully next year! I did however go skiing during a strange francophone holiday known as “vacance de carnival” or the carnival holiday, which was fun and equally terrifying. At the school we’ve been working way for the “Porte overte” or doors open, where members of the public can come and look around and see all the work from the school, Beligan tv came in to do a piece on the Bande dessine workshop as even for Belgium it’s a bit of a rarity to have school offering a comic book diploma. I don’t think the segment is online as of yet, but in searching for it I found a report from last year if anyone is interested .

– http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zLpTPxddX7Y –

Our most recent comic project was to write comic with a minimum of 4 pages which had to have at least one scene in a location which you had photographed, the other restriction of the brief was that you could only use two colour gamuts, this was a challenging exercise for me because my colour theory isn’t fantastic and as a preference I prefer to use just one colour. You can see the first completed page of the comic, the story is about a women who knits a scarf for a sea captain and was inspired my a true story of my grandma.
My drawing professor said something to me the other day which really rang true with me and with hopefully give you guys a bit of an idea of the schools work ethic, she compared the hours of anatomy and drawing lessons you have each week to training in sports, it’s not the main event but it’s to keep fit or improve your fitness. Again Feel free to check out my blogs where I post my work from the school at gregorymuskett.tumblr.com and gregorymuskett.comscarfpg1

News from St. Luc Ecole Supérieure des Arts

end of nov…..Hello Everyone!

I’ve been thinking that I would really like to give you guys a better idea of what goes on in the comic book course drawing wise. The structure of the main comic book workshop is a series of briefs where the end result is comic strip. The process-wise you start with a storyboard and then you have several meetings with the scenario tutor who advises you on the composition or content of your frames to help the story flow and be more readable. Also it will be looked at by the other comic book tutors and they give you critical feedback to help you improve it. You have to rework the comic a few times before its ready to be drawn up in neat and as you can see from my story board there is lots of black tape where I have changed frames.

Something I’ve learnt at the school is the importance of the visual note, as the storyboard just acts as a way to clarify what is going to be in each frame and where each frame will be on the page. There is no real need for it to be entirely rendered but instead just enough so you can see whats happening. As for the other practical modules there is “Drawing as a Means of Expression”, Anatomy, and Colour. I’ve included some of my sketches from drawing and anatomy, and hope to have some colour pictures up soon! The professors of these subjects seem quite dedicated and have great knowledge to impart so the courses are a great tool to compliment the main workshop.

As for life in Brussels it feels like a real transitional growing experience. I feel like an alien experiencing a new planet for the first time it’s great fun! Also I have funny picture of me and meg with the erasmus house on halloween which I thought you’d like.

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Greg

Meg’s report

At the moment we have three narrative based projects, a personal project to start developing and…other things I can’t remember. I think it’s quite important to have good organisational skills if you come to this school, because the workload is heavy and the turnover for the projects are fairly quick. Also, learn at least some French. Don’t come over with a vague notion that you can magically understand the French speakers just because you can, because you can’t and things get confusing quickly…

However, the work is interesting. Alongside the more narrative based ‘illustration’ projects ( e.g storyboarding, illustrating little books), there are lots of workshops to develop practical skills, such as life drawing, colour and composition, photoshop workshops and photography. The tutors are open to any questions, and give fair criticism and advice on your work.

Although the first couple of months are fairly tough, adapting to a new country and all that, I think it’s worth it it tough it out, because not only is the school interesting, Brussels itself is a really good place to come and see. It’s perfect place to come if you have and interest in Illustration and Comics – there’s pretty much a BD shop on every corner and loads of fairly cheap second hand bookshops. There’s plenty of bars and restaurants and cinema’s, etc, to keep yourself amused. The city, overall, has a really warm, friendly feel to it, which has surprised me a bit, and the people here are really nice and friendly. Also, yes, the beer and chips and waffles are pretty nice too…

Overall assessment so far is that it’s tough, but plenty to be gained from it.
Meg

The school can be very testing at times but thats the fun I guess, me and meg both feel our confidence is growing in our technical abilities.

I’m sorry I’ve been out of contact for a while I’ve been quite ill! I’ve had a bad case of swollen lymph glands! but after litres of orange juice and 2 days sleep I think I’m on the mend! The project I’ve been working on for the main comics workshop is translating a passage from the book “foxfire : confessions of a girl gang” by Carol Joyce Oates into a comic strip. Part of the brief was that we were only to use black and white or positive and negative, the idea of not using tone was new and scary to me but I gave it a go and tried out different techniques, started using some fineliners but found it too time consuming and some grey was sneaking in so I decided to use the quill instead. I have the first page here and the second page is on its way. the fine-liner frames are in better detail on my website if you are interested,

http://gregorymuskett.com/archive

Oct.9th

Hello!, right, here is the news – The first few weeks were turbulent but that was to be expected. Figuring out where everything was and also trying to comprehend the local dialect and hieroglyphs has been interesting. The school multi-faceted in it’s opinions and attitudes towards teaching and erasmus students but as a general overview Julie Dupont is very patient and welcoming, also the main tutors of the workshop of your chosen degree are likely to be the ones who are most interested to see you. Marc Sevrin one of my tutors for the year 2 comics course he said that he knew you and has been very helpful to me. Generally the attitude towards the work out here is very serious which can be brilliant in certain situations and strange in others but it’s best just to humour the system and enjoy everything as much as you can. when you arrive you have two weeks to change your modules just like you told me, if I had some advice for people doing it this year it would be not to worry too much about picking a perfect mixture of courses for the learning agreement because when you arrive it can all be changed, the main bulk of the course is the “atelier” (workshop) and the rest are complimentary courses really. I decided to change a few of my theory courses because I was concentrating so hard to understand the french and wasn’t spending enough time on the actual subject matter, so now instead I am doing a lot more life drawing and anatomy, I think Julie will email the amended learning agreement form at some point. It’s great fun here in the erasmus house there is always something happening, like a city wide bike and roller festival or disco in a disused hospital or a high brow cinema museum showing an experimental film about the history of utah. You get to live with people studying on creative courses from all sorts of places, quebec, Slovakia, Italy, france, so it’s a great insight into what other people are doing. I hope to have some work scanned and sent to you by the end of the week.

My final piece of advice to people thinking about studying on the erasmus scheme is that even though it seems like a bit of a stab in the dark at first it’s really worth it, it’s a great chance to experience a different perspective on Illustration and it’s a lot of fun! You just need the determination and a sense of humour

News from St. Luc Ecole Supérieure des Arts

David the Dolphin

Hello Cheltenham, Happy New Year!

once again its been a little while since my last entry, as the exam period is now over things have settled down a bit allowing me the time to do a bit of blogging! Now that I’ve been at the school and in brussels for a term, I feel like I’ve gotten accustomed to the life and routine a little bit. The dreaded exam period wasn’t as scary as I thought it would be which was nice. One thing I’ve been enjoying more and more at the school is the variety of the modules, aside from the main comics workshop, I’m studying anatomy, colour, experimental drawing, life drawing, and tutorials for the adobe creative suit. I’ve set up a blog which I will be updating quite regularly of my work from some of these other subjects, It can be foundhttp://gregmuskett.tumblr.com
, it also has a translated version of my most recent storyboard for the comics workshop called “David the Dolphin”. The brief was to work in groups of 3 or 4 and choose a location to photograph (this was in link with our photography module) and then each write a 4 to 6 page comic with animal characters so the result was a collection of animal stories that occurred in the same place, I’ve attached my finished frames from the comic. It’s been snowing a fair bit here which is nice, with all the metro and tram links I’m not really suffering from the same travel issues which stunt the cotswolds. All in all I had a great christmas at home but I’m real happy to be back in Brussels. Also I’m trying to get to Angouleme BD festival, I’ll let you know how successful I am in my next post!

Greg.

end of nov…..Hello Everyone!

I’ve been thinking that I would really like to give you guys a better idea of what goes on in the comic book course drawing wise. The structure of the main comic book workshop is a series of briefs where the end result is comic strip. The process-wise you start with a storyboard and then you have several meetings with the scenario tutor who advises you on the composition or content of your frames to help the story flow and be more readable. Also it will be looked at by the other comic book tutors and they give you critical feedback to help you improve it. You have to rework the comic a few times before its ready to be drawn up in neat and as you can see from my story board there is lots of black tape where I have changed frames.

Something I’ve learnt at the school is the importance of the visual note, as the storyboard just acts as a way to clarify what is going to be in each frame and where each frame will be on the page. There is no real need for it to be entirely rendered but instead just enough so you can see whats happening. As for the other practical modules there is “Drawing as a Means of Expression”, Anatomy, and Colour. I’ve included some of my sketches from drawing and anatomy, and hope to have some colour pictures up soon! The professors of these subjects seem quite dedicated and have great knowledge to impart so the courses are a great tool to compliment the main workshop.

As for life in Brussels it feels like a real transitional growing experience. I feel like an alien experiencing a new planet for the first time it’s great fun! Also I have funny picture of me and meg with the erasmus house on halloween which I thought you’d like.

Greg

Meg’s report

At the moment we have three narrative based projects, a personal project to start developing and…other things I can’t remember. I think it’s quite important to have good organisational skills if you come to this school, because the workload is heavy and the turnover for the projects are fairly quick. Also, learn at least some French. Don’t come over with a vague notion that you can magically understand the French speakers just because you can, because you can’t and things get confusing quickly…

However, the work is interesting. Alongside the more narrative based ‘illustration’ projects ( e.g storyboarding, illustrating little books), there are lots of workshops to develop practical skills, such as life drawing, colour and composition, photoshop workshops and photography. The tutors are open to any questions, and give fair criticism and advice on your work.

Although the first couple of months are fairly tough, adapting to a new country and all that, I think it’s worth it it tough it out, because not only is the school interesting, Brussels itself is a really good place to come and see. It’s perfect place to come if you have and interest in Illustration and Comics – there’s pretty much a BD shop on every corner and loads of fairly cheap second hand bookshops. There’s plenty of bars and restaurants and cinema’s, etc, to keep yourself amused. The city, overall, has a really warm, friendly feel to it, which has surprised me a bit, and the people here are really nice and friendly. Also, yes, the beer and chips and waffles are pretty nice too…

Overall assessment so far is that it’s tough, but plenty to be gained from it.
Meg

The school can be very testing at times but thats the fun I guess, me and meg both feel our confidence is growing in our technical abilities.

I’m sorry I’ve been out of contact for a while I’ve been quite ill! I’ve had a bad case of swollen lymph glands! but after litres of orange juice and 2 days sleep I think I’m on the mend! The project I’ve been working on for the main comics workshop is translating a passage from the book “foxfire : confessions of a girl gang” by Carol Joyce Oates into a comic strip. Part of the brief was that we were only to use black and white or positive and negative, the idea of not using tone was new and scary to me but I gave it a go and tried out different techniques, started using some fineliners but found it too time consuming and some grey was sneaking in so I decided to use the quill instead. I have the first page here and the second page is on its way. the fine-liner frames are in better detail on my website if you are interested,

http://gregorymuskett.com/archive

Oct.9th

Hello!, right, here is the news – The first few weeks were turbulent but that was to be expected. Figuring out where everything was and also trying to comprehend the local dialect and hieroglyphs has been interesting. The school multi-faceted in it’s opinions and attitudes towards teaching and erasmus students but as a general overview Julie Dupont is very patient and welcoming, also the main tutors of the workshop of your chosen degree are likely to be the ones who are most interested to see you. Marc Sevrin one of my tutors for the year 2 comics course he said that he knew you and has been very helpful to me. Generally the attitude towards the work out here is very serious which can be brilliant in certain situations and strange in others but it’s best just to humour the system and enjoy everything as much as you can. when you arrive you have two weeks to change your modules just like you told me, if I had some advice for people doing it this year it would be not to worry too much about picking a perfect mixture of courses for the learning agreement because when you arrive it can all be changed, the main bulk of the course is the “atelier” (workshop) and the rest are complimentary courses really. I decided to change a few of my theory courses because I was concentrating so hard to understand the french and wasn’t spending enough time on the actual subject matter, so now instead I am doing a lot more life drawing and anatomy, I think Julie will email the amended learning agreement form at some point. It’s great fun here in the erasmus house there is always something happening, like a city wide bike and roller festival or disco in a disused hospital or a high brow cinema museum showing an experimental film about the history of utah. You get to live with people studying on creative courses from all sorts of places, quebec, Slovakia, Italy, france, so it’s a great insight into what other people are doing. I hope to have some work scanned and sent to you by the end of the week.

My final piece of advice to people thinking about studying on the erasmus scheme is that even though it seems like a bit of a stab in the dark at first it’s really worth it, it’s a great chance to experience a different perspective on Illustration and it’s a lot of fun! You just need the determination and a sense of humour

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