The goal was for the students to be in a creative, problem-solving mindset before walking into the event. After some discussion, the committee agreed that I would create visual comic strip "prompts" to engage the students before they entered the auditorium where Curtis Zimmerman would walk them through revising the Studio Culture Document. The comic prompts would put hypothetical situations before the students to get them thinking about things from an unbiased, 30,000 foot view.
The comic prompts took several iterations to land on a good format. The delicate balance between being too obvious and offering too much freedom of interpretation was tough. However, we finally landed on having a nice illustration with empty comic panels. I have included a few examples of prompts below:
The blue illustrations were there to give the pages some style. When I created the poster, I unintentionally established the color palette for the entire event. I attempted to stay consistent with that while creating new, energetic illustrations to inspire the students. The use of abstract, textural elements with hand-drawn sketches seemed to do the trick.
The examples with filled-in panels were there to help the students understand the point of the empty squares on the page. We kept them rough so that students would feel open to drawing in them. If you make something too pristine, people don't want to mess it up. Our hope was that the students would feel comfortable drawing on the page, no matter what their skill level was. The entire goal of the event was to get students excited about the studio culture, and these seemed to help with that purpose.
Here is a closer look at the illustrations I created for the prompts. I put a little extra polish on one of them before posting. Sometimes you just can't keep yourself from touching up an old work of art.
Stay tuned next week for more on my role during the event!