Starting in January, I began a course in Writing and Illustrating Graphic Novels with Ali Fitzgerald through Berlin Drawing Room. Ali is a fantastic instructor. She helps you find ways into your work: generative exercises, critical examples, interviews with artists about methods and materials. She also encourages you to find the ways to have fun. I was really intimidated by the idea of graphic novels – the undertaking seemed too daunting- but working with Ali and alongside artists with widely different approaches has been so helpful and inspiring.
For further backstory: My cousin Jessica had found Berlin Drawing Room classes in the height of lockdown and recommended I check them out. The recommendation proved incredibly fruitful. After I defended my dissertation in 2020 and my drawing practice turned mostly into Zoom conference sketching (still very useful!), I felt a little lost. Starting with Mira O’Brien technical instruction in botanical watercolor, then G’s figure drawing classes, I had a new place to go every week that helped me get out of my head about academia and work and job prospects. I am so grateful for this community of artists. Something about the global span is reassuring. I know I could find regular classes in New York (and should, perhaps), but I’ve paradoxically appreciated the distance.