17/08/22 • News & Happenings

Kilkenny Animated

What to expect from Cliodhna Lyons's Mini Comic Workshop

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Cliodhna Lyons, Assistant Director

Attendee Category: 7-10 year olds

If there’s anyone who knows anything about comics, it’s Cliodhna Lyons. Not only does she have almost twenty years of experience in self-publishing mini-comics and hand-bound books, she also holds a BFA in comics from the New York School of Visual Arts. Cliodhna currently works at Lighthouse Studios, where most recently she served as assistant director on the Apple TV+ adaptation of Cece Bell’s graphic memoir, El Deafo.  

This year’s Kilkenny Animated festival will see Cliodhna sharing her knowledge and expertise in a Mini Comic Book Workshop for children, where participants will have the chance to create and bring home with them their very own mini-comic book. Cliodhna will also be running an Inking Workshop for teens aged 13-16 (which you can read more about here). Pretty cool!  

We recently checked in with Cliodhna to find out a bit more about the Mini Comic Book workshop and what attendees can expect.  

Before the fun begins!

Cliodhna, tell us about your workshop. Who is it for?  

The Mini Comic Book Workshop is for children aged between 7 to 10. There will be a selection of comics from around the world on display, and we’ll be kicking things off with a brief history of comics followed by a discussion on storytelling, and how comics can be used to tell almost any story. Participants will be given some fun worksheets and some exercises to help get their creative juices flowing before working on an eight-page comic book story of their very own.  

Why do you feel that this is an important workshop for Kilkenny Animated?   

The focus of the workshop is on storytelling. It’s not about who has the best art skills.  I feel this is important for kids, as comics can be a great medium for them to express themselves and the stories they want to tell, but sometimes they might feel discouraged from taking part as they don’t consider themselves the best artist in their class. Focusing on the storytelling aspect allows everyone to take part and tell their story – whether they draw super detailed figures or stick men.  

You have facilitated this workshop before. What have the audiences’ reactions been? 

I have run this workshop several times in conjunction with Children’s Books Ireland at several libraries around Ireland and the reaction has always been very positive. There is always a great mixture of kids, from those who love art and are ready to draw the minute they arrive, to those who are less confident in their drawing skills and may need some encouragement. The workshop is designed to allow everyone to get involved and make a comic.

What do you think would be an ideal outcome for the attendees – what do you hope they will gain from the event? 

At the end of the workshop everyone will have at least started, if not yet finished, their own eight-page mini comic. The mini comic is designed to fit on one sheet of A4 paper so many copies can be made and shared using a photocopier.

Do the attendees need to bring anything?  

No –all materials and worksheets will be provided.

We can’t wait! Find out more info on this and other Kilkenny Animated events over on the Kilkenny Animated site.  


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