Here are some comments we’ve had from teachers, students, parents, organisers and visitors to our club:

The Crazy Comic club provided an excellent experience for my students, they were thoroughly engaged throughout the day and produced some fantastic work. We have had James in twice now and I will definitely be looking to book him again soon.

Kate Guy
Claremont High School

James Parsons’ Crazy Comic Workshops provided a fantastic mix of fun and inspiration to everyone who attended the sessions held in library and youth centre venues throughout Stockton on Tees. James conveyed his immense enthusiasm for creating comics, backed up with a wealth of knowledge and drawing expertise that brought positive feedback from the participants in every session. James worked with young people from 8 to 18, and and whatever level of drawing ability each participant had, James was able to pinpoint aspects of their drawing technique to improve, giving relevant and helpful individual advice and encouragement. Every session focussed on a different aspect of comic drawing, and James provided a range of resources to help even the most reluctant artist ‘have a go’ and gain confidence throughout the session. This was particularly helpful when working with teenagers, some of whom lacked confidence in their abilities, but who nevertheless finished the workshop with several pieces of art in progress. James recommended comic books, manga and graphic novels as a huge source of inspiration as well as reading for pleasure, and he made sure each table was littered with relevant books to browse and borrow.
I highly recommend James Parsons’ Crazy Comic workshops and would love to see him delivering more sessions in Stockton on Tees!

Children and Young Persons Librarian

Helen Wilberforce
Stockton Central Library

The workshops are a great way of engaging with young people, particularly teenagers, who wouldn’t necessarily come into the library otherwise. They appeal to kids of all abilities and interests and James is brilliant at encouraging participants to be as creative as possible. The workshops help young people who already have confidence in drawing and story-writing to develop their ideas but also make it easy for kids who don’t see themselves as talented or creative to produce brilliant pieces of work. The impact this has on the confidence of the participants is clear, and young people have reported feeling more positive about themselves and their abilities after the workshops.

Lucy Gill
West Sussex Libraries

James has got the right balance between planning and spontaneity and makes creating a comic book story really accessible so that kids can get straight into turning their creative ideas into storyboards. He makes everyone feel comfortable about their drawing abilities and supports all kinds of story-making including the unconventional and really out there. He’s got an infectious enthusiasm and sense of fun and is also an asset in a collaborative team.

Clare Halstead
Creative Partnerships

James’s illustration workshops were part of our ‘Bringing Words Alive’ Project for year 8 where we linked art with literacy in a creative and fun way whilst increasing understanding of poetry and art. He got the interest of the students by inspiring the students with his work and by teaching some drawing with ink techniques. The students were very pleased with their drawings and seemed to enjoy every minute of it.

Helen Gibb
Thomas Deacon Academy

Crazy Comic Club has run workshops at the school over the last few summers which have been very popular. The young people (aged 10-16) really enjoyed the workshops, especially learning some of the techniques such as creating 3D pictures, and they were proud to take home what they had made during the day to show family and friends. Feedback was very positive and some of them look forward to coming back each year. Those running the workshops really knew their stuff and and worked well with the young people and created a fun, interesting workshop for a mixture of young people of differing abilities.

Katherine Gregory
Falmer High School

Our students had a fantastic time working with James! We spent half the day looking at Manga in all its forms with Year 8 and 9 students, and the other half looking at comics and comic strips in general with students nominated by our Media and Art departments who were considering taking either subject at GSCE the following year. The students really enjoyed both sessions, as well as the opportunity to do some drawing of their own with an expert. “Well better than a normal lesson Miss”, and “That was cool, can we do it again next week?” were two of the numerous comments I had from some very happy young adults – I can definitely recommend the Crazy Comic Club experience!!

Art Teacher