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Drawing Race

We are astonishingly different, we humans, and it is a glorious thing.

This past November, I returned to the Center for Cartoon Studies for my annual guest spot in the introductory drawing workshop, teaching a session called “Drawing Race and Ethnicity.” Many of the student comic artists, like many children’s book illustrators, are accomplished at drawing, but not necessarily skilled at depicting racially diverse characters.

Diversifying our characters doesn’t mean just coloring in white faces. All our children need to see themselves in our books, which includes their differences, in the shape, size and set of eyes, nose and lips, in the texture of hair, in the structure of the face and the line of the profile. We are astonishingly different, we humans, and it is a glorious thing.