Today, the graphic novel is
the fastest growing literary
genre in North America.
A Graphic Novel is...
Let’s watch a video to learn more
A narrative (story) presented about graphic novels...
through text and pictures.
Like a literary novel, the graphic
novel may deal with a complex plot,
diverse characters and settings, and
a variety of subject matters.
Like text-only novels, graphic
novels come in various genres, from
superhero to romance, fantasy to
science fiction, historical fiction and
Graphic Novels are... Comic Books are...
usually published in hardcover or as quality usually bound by staples.
serialized on a monthly basis (or specified time
period) with an episode of an ongoing story.
typically a higher quality than comic books in
terms of the publication process.
usually not of book length.
longer than comic books, sometimes running
to hundreds of pages.
Barack and Spider-Man
As a child, Barack Obama collected
His favourite character was Spider-
Marvel Comics has decided to
provide a commemorative comic
book that has Spiderman saving
Barak Obama, and the day.
A box that contains the pictures showing what
is happening in the story, and the dialogue of
Panels literally frame the information in the
Panels are arranged to flow in sequential order
and help the reader quickly understand the
gist of the story.
Panels are arranged from left to right and then
top to bottom.
A graphic novel page is usually made up of
Panels are the paragraphs we read in regular
The most common
The bubble-shaped spaces within a panel that shape of the word
contain dialogue or a character’s thoughts in balloon is oval. A
textual format. balloon of this shape
The balloons may be singles or multiples,
based on the length of the dialogue.
Balloons come in a number of different
shapes, each of which indicates a different
sound level or mood.
A fluffy cloud-shaped word balloon
contains the thoughts of a character.
Instead of a tail, a thought balloon
usually has bubbles leading to the
character who is thinking.
A caption box contains the narrative that fills
in the details of the story being told.
Captions add to the speech and artwork.
They do not repeat what the artist has drawn.
Their purpose is to fill in the gaps.
Usually a caption appears in a rectangular box
at the top or bottom of a panel.
The space between panels on a page is called
A panel border is the box that encloses the
actions of the scenes.
Panel borders are not always the same shape;
sometimes they are not used at all.
In depicting space or settings where the
story unfolds in a panel, artists use
methods similar to the ones used by
Zooming in...makes the subject bigger
and more detailed (for example: close-
up of a face)
Zooming out ...drawing the picture
relatively smaller and placing it in the
background by means of a long shot.
A character’s gestures and postures become
powerful ways for communicating nonverbally
with others and for telling stories.
A character’s facial expression often reveals
their feelings and sometimes their thoughts.
Movement is generated either while
reading the dialogue in various
types of balloons, or while following
gestures, postures, actions,
placement of various shapes, and
Lighting creates a crucial role in creating
mood and feeling within the panels.
For example, darkness creates a mysterious
atmosphere in a panel.
Lighting also communicates the time of day in
which the action is taking place, for example, a
moonlit night, or a sunrise, or midday in the
Sound is usually established through written
What is a graphic novel?
What is a panel?
What is a word balloon?
What is a caption?
Do you have any
Each group of two will receive a
page from a graphic novel that is
missing word balloons.
Envelopes with the missing word
balloons will be provided.
Together, you will place the
captions and speech balloons in the
panels, in an order that makes
Share your interpretations with
Calvin and Hobbes
Analyze the comic provided. You
will notice the dialogue is missing.
Look closely at the characters’ facial
expressions and body language, as
well as the setting and possible
Brainstorm a storyline that suits the
images in each panel.
Add text in the word balloons to
make the comic complete.
Read chapter one
Bring in non-perishable
food for our food drive
Balloons can express thoughts, Experiment with the following:
dreams, speeches, loud voices,
whisperings, wishes, sound effects, Capitalization
etc. Upper and lower case
Each student will be provided a All caps
handout with the same four panels Emphasis on different words (e.g.,
from a graphic novel. bold, colour)
The dialogue is already created, but Dashes
the task is to incorporate different
kinds of punctuation or different
lettering styles and balloon shapes
YOU SHOULDN’T YOU
HAVE EATEN THE
But I was
BUT I WAS