Hi, my name is Ebony. I'm a cartoonist and an ethnographer. My expertise is in qualitative research and evaluation, picture-based methods, curriculum studies, and S.T.E.A.M. education. I earned a PhD in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

My research revolves around visualization practices in formal education and professional settings. I focus on how people learn to participate in ways of seeing and making images while in unfamiliar socio-cultural realms.

I generate, analyze, and represent my ethnographic research using a comics making process. Comics making is a way to translate my multimodal and multi-sensory data using a process that complements, yet remains distinct from text-based approaches to qualitative research.

I balance my academic work by making fiction and creative non-fiction comics. These comics explore my broader interests in storytelling.

My comics making practice is heavily influenced by my mentor and former boss at the Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery's Image Lab, Lynda Barry. I draw and write daily to see the drawing in writing and the writing in drawing. I aim to develop my ability as a writer, picture-maker, and observer while exploring what comics are and their use in planned and spontaneous storytelling. I produce all of my fiction and creative non-fiction comics entirely by hand.



I regularly facilitate workshops about making comics. During my hands-on workshops, participants make their own comics and explore topics such as teaching, storytelling, individual and group creativity, professional practice, and comics making as a research method and analytic process. When facilitating workshops, I draw upon 15 years of experience as an educator and educational researcher. I began my career as a secondary science teacher in Chicago Public Schools, followed by additional teaching roles - with learners of all ages and stages of schooling - in Angola, Washington D.C., and at UW-Madison.

If your university or organization would like to know more about workshop opportunities, please contact me.

Recent workshops (selected)

  • Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto (Summer, '18)
  • Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto (April, '17)
  • Art Department, University of Madison-Wisconsin (April, '17)
  • Omega Institute for Holistic Studies (June, '16)
  • Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery, University of Wisconsin-Madison ('13-'16)