Comic Jam draws out community creativity at Troy Library

TROY COMIC JAM PROVIDES participants of all ages and skill levels with the opportunity to create meaningful art through a natural, unifying group experience.

Walking into the Troy Public Library is always an adventure, and Saturday’s Comic Jam was no exception. Cartoonist and illustrator Ira Marcks has made it his priority to make the arts more present again in Troy, particularly with the constant budget cuts in arts departments across the country. Saturday’s display was just one example of the efforts he goes to in order to make these things a possibility.

Marcks opens every event to people of all ages and skill levels, having a large table filled with art supplies presented to you upon entering. From there, you talk a little bit about the event and what you want to do, and quickly you’re on your way to making something more. Pre-made storyboards of four or six frames as well as pens and pencils are distributed to every participant, as well as a story prompt card to help people get started. What then follows is where the real magic happens.

The goal is to have every person create a frame and then pass their story on to the next person to in order to build a sort of natural and unifying adventure between all participants. Be it the daily routine of magical farm, or accidentally adopting a werewolf, everyone gets to start somewhere to build their own world along with everyone else. Plus, when everyone is done, you get to bring home a completed story created with many new friends, as well as a free copy of Marcks’ book Creative Every Day, which details what it’s like to work in the creative industry in a format accessible to people of all ages.

This experience was really something special and definitely an event to look out for in the future.