An Eye for Art: Eldersburg native combines love of writing and art to create comic books

Monique Stavely, of Eldersburg, attends McDaniel College and combines her love of writing and drawing to create comic books.
Monique Stavely, of Eldersburg, attends McDaniel College and combines her love of writing and drawing to create comic books. (Courtesy photo)

Monique Staveley, an artist from Eldersburg, is currently attending McDaniel College and recently had her artwork displayed in the Honors Art Show titled “Plastics and Pigments,” which was on view at the Rice Gallery on campus during March. The art show is for students that have taken honors art classes and are chosen to be in the show.

Staveley first became interested in art when she was 10 years old. She drew and made clay sculptures. Staveley also did some painting.


She got more serious about art when she attended Century High School. Staveley found her love of art in combination with her writing. She took a variety of classes including sculpting, drawing and painting and AP studio art to accomplish her future goals.

She wrote stories and drew and colored scenes that she felt were significant from the story. Staveley wrote fantasy stories that often included dragons, elves and imaginary places. Staveley graduated from high school in 2013.


Staveley decided to attend Carroll Community College in fall 2013 to major in art. She took classes in drawing, a 3-D class and a painting class. She also enrolled in an independent study class for advanced art students. The class did mostly drawing such as still life images, abstracts and portraits. They were given an assignment that could be completed in any way they wished. She graduated with her associate degree in 2016.

Linda Heine is a local amateur bird photographer from Taneytown. Heine began taking photographs with her cell phone in 2015. She began to take photographs of Bald Eagles at Codorus State Park in Hanover, Pennsylvania.

Staveley went on to McDaniel College to major in fine art that same year. She has taken advanced studio art from 1, 2 and 3. The students focus on one body of work. Staveley has been focusing on creating comics with pen and ink on paper.

Her comics are about college life problems. The characters are going through their daily activities but they seem to face bigger problems than really exist. The main character is based off herself. The secondary characters reflect her friends and family.

Staveley’s first comic book features a student who realizes her term paper is due soon.

“It turned literally into a big paper monster,” Staveley said. “The monster trapped her in her room until her term paper was due.” This comic done is executed with colored pencils.

Her second comic book is about the main character who goes out with her boyfriend and runs into her ex-friend. There is a lot of drama between the friends and a big battle ensues that involves witchcraft.

Both of her comic books were on display at the “Pigments and Plastics” show.

“I usually write and draw separately so I decided to combine them in this class. Since I always liked to write stories, this is the best of both worlds,” Staveley explained. “I feel really good when people get to read my stories and enjoy them. Making something that people can read and enjoy is my goal.”

Staveley may get a master’s degree when she graduates. She is looking for an internship in concept art for movies or video games. At some point she would like to get her stories published.

She can be contacted at mss010@mcdaniel.edu.

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