I’m a nonfiction graphic novelist, a visual artist, and a creative writing teacher. I came to comics making through painting, later figuring out my writing craft much later. I’m interested in how newbies coming from a broad range of experiences can leverage their talents and interests into making comics. There’s not really a “right way” to make comics. Are you bad at drawing? Don’t know the first thing about plot? You can make comics! You don’t need credentials or a fancy degree to get what you want out of your comics practice. In an hour-long consult, we can discuss possibilities of how to approach making comics as a novice and passionate beginner, and how to cultivate the self-belief and good habits to keep making work and growing as an artist.

What Can We Work on Together?

  • What Can You Use Right Now to Get Started?

    Are you a puppeteer or a stockbroker or a retired captain of industry or farmer? You can make comics using the brilliance and skills you already possess! I’ll help you identify strengths and assist in creating a list of reachable goals to get you on the road to your “big dream” goal (making your first comic, or a long graphic novel, or tackling comics in a new genre outside of your usual wheelhouse.)

  • What can you use right now to keep going?

    You’ve got the tools to make comics! Let’s put you in the driver’s seat and get you making pages.

  • How to build a sustainable art practice?

    You ARE a cartoonist! Or graphic novelist or comic book maker or whatever impossible-sounding thing you want to be. I’ll give you strategies for finishing your stories and keep making them and sharing them with the world!

Pricing options

Priced per hour.

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Instructor Bio:

Jess Ruliffson is an award-winning cartoonist. Her debut graphic novel, Invisible Wounds, is out now from Fantagraphics. In 2017, her comic I Trained to Fight The Enemy was shortlisted for Slate's Cartoonist Studio Prize. Her comics have appeared in Freeman's Tale of Two Americas, Virginia Quarterly Review, The Gainesville Sun, BuzzFeed, The Nib, The Boston Globe, Pantheon Books, Wilson Quarterly, and The Oxford American. She teaches comics and painting at The Sequential Artists Workshop in Gainesville, FL and The School of Visual Arts in NYC. Jess is represented by Duvall Osteen at Aragi, Inc.

Jess Ruliffson