DC writer and artist Francis Manapul will continue to instruct young aspiring artists on how to draw The Flash during a second live interactive art experience. The first session debuted on June 19 via Varsity Tutors, “a Nerdy (NYSE: NRDY) company and one of the nation’s largest platforms for live online tutoring and classes, in partnership with Warner Bros. Discovery Global Consumer Products.”


The draw-along series continues this week as part of their free StarCourse content, a collection of exclusive learning sessions taught by celebrity instructors and top experts across categories.

On July 12th (6 pm ET) Manapul teaches “DC Presents: Learn to Draw Action Scenes Featuring The Flash.” In this class, kids will learn how to showcase superhuman speed in a still image. By drawing The Flash in motion, Manapul shares how he illustrates scenes that feature speed, strength, conflict, and movement, in a vivid way that packs pages with action.

On July 27th (6 pm ET), the series progresses to “DC Presents: Create a Comic Book Villain Inspired by The Flash Universe,” where Manapul will break down the elements of creating and drawing villains and will walk kids through the process of making their own supervillain.

Finally, the conclusion will be on August 14th (7 pm ET) with “DC Presents: Develop Storytelling Superpowers Inspired by The Flash.” In this class, Manapul teaches the key elements of comic book storytelling, sharing his author’s toolkit and the secrets to imagining superpowers.  

We chatted with Manapul about the classes and The Flash.

Deanna Destito: Why did you choose The Flash to highlight?

Francis Manapul

Francis Manapul: My association with The Flash runs deep. It felt fitting for me to share my process as an artist and as a writer on a character I’ve had the privilege to have worked on and loved as a fan. The dynamic aspect of his powers also gives me the opportunity to showcase some of the techniques I’ve learned through the visualization of speed in a static medium as well as the chance to share some of the methods I use to tell stories. 

Destito: Why is it important to foster creativity in kids, particularly in the comic medium?

Manapul: Comic books are a powerful tool for nurturing creativity and put our kids in the driver’s seat to explore their imagination. Comics demand reader participation and activates their ability to create images and stories in their mind to fill the gaps left between the panels. Learning how to create your own comics is a natural progression in further exploring their creativity and even an outlet to express themselves.

Destito: What are the challenges in drawing a character such as The Flash and how do you find ways to help young artists work through those tricky areas?

Manapul: The greatest challenge with drawing The Flash is portraying speed and motion through static images. I share the techniques I use to supercharge any aspiring artist’s ability to draw dynamic images. Taking inspiration from the way a camera captures an object in motion, we explore the principles of motion blur, speedlines, lightning effects, etc. Then we figure out how we can break the rules to further accentuate that sense of speed. 

Destito: What are your best comic art tips?

Manapul: Feel free to make mistakes. A lot of artists feel the pressure to come out of the gate a fully formed artist. As a fan and admirer of art, it’s common to look at a finished piece and romanticize how easy the drawing must have come to the artist. What you don’t see are the series of mistakes they’ve made along the way. What allows me to keep moving and not get hung up is to keep it fun.

When I’m drawing and having fun, I’m drawing without fear or consequence and before you know it the drawing is finished. All of my focus is on putting to paper the images I see in my mind. Of course, along the way everyone will encounter some hurdles and feel a disconnect with their intent and what’s on paper. But the quicker you can finish that drawing, the quicker you can learn and improve on mistakes. As an artist there’s no finish line for the perfect art piece; it’s a continuous process we constantly iterate on. By keeping the process fun, and by the simplicity of you constantly drawing, improvements will come.

To find classes and to register, click here.