Saturday, March 21, 2015

Graphic novelist presents free comic book workshop for kids

The Dearborn Community Arts Council and the Padzieski Art Gallery will bring artist, designer and graphic novelist Paul Sizer back to Dearborn for two events on April 8.

The Michigan artist, who is the subject of the current Padzieski Art Gallery exhibition “Re-Examine / Re-Purpose - A New Look At Propaganda & Pin-Up Art” presented in collaboration with Green Brain Comics through April 10, returns for the DCAC’s free monthly gallery program Teatime with the Artist from 2 to 3 p.m. April 8.

Sizer then will present a free comic book youth workshop from 5 to 7 p.m. for ages 8 to 18, offering drawing lessons and an opportunity to color many of his comic book images using crayons in a coloring book of his own designs.

The collection of posters and prints on display in the gallery exhibition can inspire the creativity of those attending.

Sizer’s work presents a mix of drawing styles and typographic design repurposed to create a hybrid style that examines different ways to look at elements of the historic propaganda style poster and a new look for traditional pin-up art, making them both more diverse and positive in their messaging. Sizer’s artwork also challenges traditional comic book stereotypes and include a variety of cultural and gender diversities in his imagery, repurposing the often clichéd roles of victim into hero and heroine.

Sizer said he’s been drawing cartoons since he was 5 years old, “and will continue to do this for the foreseeable future.”

He contributed comic strips to every school newspaper he could, and won three national awards for his “Bill The Rabbit” comic strip in the Western Herald, Western Michigan University's student newspaper.

He’s a self-taught comic artist, earning a BFA degree in graphic design from WMU. He has run his own freelance design and illustration business for more than 20 years, and also teaches part time in the graphic design program at WMU. Sizer has clients all over the world, working with musicians, including Thomas Dolby, on musical projects, gaming companies and other comic creators, as well as local clients, such as the Killamazoo Derby Darlins.

Sizer lives and works in Kalamazoo with his wife and fellow comic artist and Killamazoo Derby Darlins blocker Jane Irwin. He runs Sizer Design + Illustration, his freelance design business of more than 20 years, and self-publishes his graphic novels under his Café Digital Studios imprint. His graphic novels include Little White Mouse, Moped Army, B.P.M., Mixtape: 1984, and the upcoming Daughters Of The Octopus.

Registration is available for the events by calling 313-943-3095 or emailing DCAC Director Ralph Valdez at


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