Avengers Assemble!: Getting started in Comics Studies.

  • 10 September 2013, 02:58

With Fresher’s Week flying past us, it’s finally time to settle down and get to grips with our courses; and I for one couldn’t be more excited about embarking on my Postgraduate adventure in Comics Studies.

Matriculation on Friday posed as a great mixer for fellow postgraduate students in the Humanities department as we met with our course organisers.  It was also where we made final decisions as to what modules we would like to take – a decision which was not easy to make!

The MLitt Comics Studies course has two core modules, which all students are required to take: International Comics Cultures – which explores the wide variety of comics from around the globe, comparing and contrasting various works; and Autobiographix, which focuses on autobiographical and documentary comics.

We are also required to take two optional modules, having to choose between Digital Comics, Comics & Film, and Creating Comics.  This choice was painfully difficult as I was so keen to do all three!  However, I finally settled on Digital Comics and Creating Comics, where I will gain a valuable understanding of how a small idea is transformed into a physical creation, as well as being on top of the most up-to-date technology within the field.  (Although I hope to charm my way into sitting in on the Comics and Film seminars next semester as well!)

As part of the course, we will also have workshops with visitors from the heart of the world of comics, such as David Bishop, Jim Devlin, and the staff of DC Thompson.  This will provide a unique insight into the comics industry, and it will be fantastic to hear from some of the big names of the industry.

Our first class started on Monday (after a brief fire-alarm incident) in our very own Comics Studio.  That’s right, we have our own dedicated space in the Tower Building where we can work on our projects and coursework throughout the year, with drawing tables, computers, and scanners.  Not only that, but there is a huge selection of comics which – we have been told – has been donated to the University by Scottish comics legend, Grant Morrison! The room is officially being opened on September 18th at 3pm by Scottish comics artist, Cam Kennedy – who also has the privilege of having the comics studio named after him.  It’s very exciting to be granted our own space dedicated to all things comics!

The course is going to be great in bringing together people with a passion for comics with various insights and ideas.  There are nine of us on the MLitt course from all across the globe and with differing interests in the medium, ranging from art to writing to publishing to just being interested.   It will provide beneficial networking opportunities with students from across the University of Dundee itself, as well as the Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design.  I’m really excited to be a part of this comics community, and can’t wait to delve deeper!

Written by:

Kirsten is returning to Dundee after graduating from the University of Glasgow with an MA in English Literature and History. She’s now going to be working towards an MLitt in Comics Studies, enrolling in the only course in the UK which offers a true insight into the world of comics.

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