Centre for Narrative Drawing

The Centre aims to support, challenge and develop synergies between the study and practices of storytelling, material culture and depiction. It is an Arts and Media Faculty open network of research interests and projects.

Tim Daly makes artist's books from fugitive materials to enhance the reader experience. Photography's own reprographic provenance provides a starting point for his tactile, short-run publications which play with notions of transience and permanence and the real and the reproduced.

Simon Grennan is a graphic novelist and scholar of visual narrative with interests in constrained drawing, adaptation and historiography.

Tom McGuirk is a researcher, scholar and artist. Tom taught Advanced Drawing at The National College of Art and Design, Dublin and has contributed to numerous conferences and publications on the topic of drawing.

Andrew Hooper has a multi-disciplinary background incorporating Design, Illustration, Interaction Design, Digital Engagement and Community Arts Regeneration. Throughout all of these activities he has explored how the creative process aids the delivery of narrative to support learning and the transmission of an individuals voice.

Julian Waite is a performer and illustrator who makes highly visual performances which tell stories.

Projects

A Theory of Narrative Drawing (2017)
Simon Grennan brings together theories of drawing and current trends in narratology, undertaking practical demonstrations of the significance of style, in a book published by Palgrave MacMillan, New York.

The picture of Dorian Gray (2016)
A performance illustration by Julian Waite currently in planning for the Threshold Festival 2016 and Tatton Hall Festival 2016.

Marie Duval presents Ally Sloper: the female cartoonist and popular theatre in London 1869-85. (2014 – 2016).Simon Grennan, Roger Sabin (University of the Arts Central Saint Martins) and Julian Waite reveal the little-known work of Duval, a comics pioneer. An AHRC Early Career project resulting in a new online database, publications and a touring exhibition.

Drawing as Situated Knowing (2013)
A paper by Tom McGuirk which makes a case for the rehabilition of drawing as an important way of knowing. Presented at the conference Drawing in the University Today, University of Porto, 2013. The book of the proceedings is available to download here.

Life drawing classes (2015)
The Cheshire Arts Network in association with the University of Chester Centre for Narrative Drawing holds life drawing classes on Thursday evenings in the University of Chester’s Kingsway Buildings (the Arts Campus).  Free to students with a small charge for members of the community. Contact Julian Waite for details.

Dispossession (2015)
The result of a three year practice-based research project in collaboration with KU Leuven and University of Cardiff, this new graphic adaptation by Simon Grennan, of Anthony Trollope’s 1879 novel John Caldigate is a project in constrained drawing: can a visual equivalent for Trollope’s literary voice be rationalised and produced? Published by Jonathan Cape and in French translation as Courir deux lièvres by Les Impressions Nouvelles, Brussels.

The winter sprites (2015)
New production made by Julian Waite with Curious Cargo Theatre Company in preparation for winter 2015.

Interactive paper storytelling (2015)
Emulating the expectations of ‘smart device’ interaction within the structure of a traditional book. Andrew Hooper is working on a series of experiments that combine paper mechanics and conductive ink to unlock narratives through physical manipulation of the printed form.

Bumpy Island
A long-term development of a children’s story by Andrew Hooper, that explores restrictions in the use of text and colour to deliver the narrative.

Returning Burton’s Plunder (2011)
Tim Daly explores the chemical potential of photogenic drawing in a book whose unfixed, unstable images slowly fade on reading, presenting an absurd dilemma for the reader.

Postgraduate and Doctoral study

The Centre invites proposals for both theory and practice-based postgraduate and doctoral research in the fields of, but not limited to, visual narrative, drawing, embodiment, performance, material culture, production cultures, media, literature, illustration, graphic design.