Alumnus + Sessional Faculty Julian Lawrence Featured in Journal of Cultural Research in Art Education

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By Roxanne Toronto

Posted on September 14, 2017 | Updated April 27, 2021, 2:00PM

Julian received his Bachelor of Media Arts with a major in Animation in 2009.

Award-winning cartoonist, animation sessional faculty + ECU alumnus Julian Lawrence has recently had is 'academicomic', The Ninth Art Versus The Tenth Art: Visualizing Conflicting Worldviews Between Comics and Screens, published in the Journal of Cultural Research in Art Education (JCRAE).

Along with teaching, Julian researches comic books in education. Over the past couple of years, he's authored and co-authored a number of academic comics (hence the term, 'academicomic') whereby his research findings are output and presented as comics.


In this article, we argue that deficient and declining opportunities for art in schools coupled with initiatives to incorporate computer literacy, coding and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) as priorities forecast a dire future for the comics medium as pedagogical tool. Additionally, one result of the medium’s historical debasement is that most educators are unfamiliar with ways to use comics and cartooning; thus classroom opportunities for students to engage in a medium they love are rare. In this study, I investigate integrating the language of comics into classroom learning strategies and research some of the ways writing/cartooning can help students negotiate conceptions of identity. I wrote a lesson plan that weaved
connections between making comics and teaching curriculum, and taught the twenty-five participants sequential narratives through freehand cartooning. This study investigates some of the ways drawing fictional
comics can support students’ learning and negotiations of identity in the classroom.

Congratulations Julian!