“...one the most influential and inspiring teachers I have ever had.”
Justin Ridge

Graphic Novel Workshop

If you have an idea that you want to turn into a comic book or a graphic novel but you're not sure about how to craft a story, this course will get you started with the most important skills. Writers often have a ton of ideas but don't know how to assemble them into strong form, or they understand story structure but can't get their ideas out. This workshop will give you exercises to overcome unnecessary carefulness that stifles creativity, and a series of questions that will prompt you to find the “shape” of your story. I will teach you the secrets of how to produce any kind of story, and also show you how to master the specific building materials of the graphic novel: pages and panels.

Click here to see if this course is open for registration and for location details.

This course meets for a varying number sessions.

from the Gut
Subjective Structure;
The Secret of Productivity
from the Brain
Finding and Developing Conflicts;
Objective Structure;
“Mapping” your story;
A List of Questions to Refine a Story
Panels & Pages
Clarity & Composition;
Flow & Impact;
Analysis of Steranko's “Ideal Page”

I taught this course at Laguna College of Art and Design to talented students who later became professsionals. This is the same material boiled down into a crash-course workshop. It is not merely lecture. It includes exercises to help you develop your project, so show up with an idea in mind.


Bring a sketchpad and a mechanical pencil or pen or some other non-messy point media. No charcoal or dusty media or anything that leaves shavings.


This is not a university curriculum course and you will not receive college credit for it.


“Marshall is an incredible draftsman and an even better teacher. His teaching methods are easily accessible, but full of depth. Under Marshall's tutelage, my classmates included novices, semi- professional artists, art teachers, and living legends of the graphic arts world. No matter what your skill level, you owe it to yourself to take Marshall's classes!”
Jason Ho
Artist for Bongo Entertainment
(Simpsons and Futurama Comics)
“It was excellent. As a board artist, I have the ability to translate scripts and stories into coherent visual form, but I'm often intimidated by the prospect of building my own. There was a nice combination of techniques along with the 'nuts and bolts' of visually constructing a story. It was well worth the time and money. Thanks again.”
—Nate Clesowich
Storyboard Artist
“All that energy, positive buzz and resonance when you are around creative people... sums up Saturday’s seminar.”
—Ellis Goodson
“Thank you for the wonderful class. I truly got what I was looking for with the refreshment on writing. I am gearing up to begin writing again and your lectures were the spark I needed.”
—Eric Hutchison
“The most popular comic book teacher the department has had.”
George Zebot
Former Chair of Illustration, Laguna College of Art & Design