In the seventh and final volume of GA: Geijutsuka Art Design Class—a slice-of-life yonkoma about a group of high school girls majoring in art—the third years prepare for graduation and the future, while the first years finish their own coursework and reach a decision about joining the art club.

In previous volumes, there was a specific artistic concept, such as color theory or fonts, that thematically drove the plot. In volume seven, the girls explore different art careersm, including designer, craftsman, creator, and art expert, which is fitting for a final volume. Each chapter begins with a brief overview of the roles of a professional in said field, along with example careers. These discussions take place between the main characters, always in visually appealing full-color panels. Class assignments and their creative projects in each chapter often fit within the career theme as well.

The main characters include five first years, a handful of second years, and graduating third years who are part of the school’s art club. Kisaragi, who wears big oval glasses, is upbeat, energetic, and also fairly clumsy. She eventually takes on the role of the new president of the art club, even though she doesn’t see herself as a natural born leader. Noda is short compared to the rest of the girls, loves fashion, and always wears her hair in different and unique ways. Tomokane is the tomboy of the group with short, spiky green hair that matches her eyes. Miyabi, referred to as “Professor” by her friends, is intelligent and reliable, while Namiko is the oldest of the girls and can often be found giving them good advice or baking delicious sweets from scratch. Miyabi and Namiko are the least child-like in their personalities, as demonstrated when they watch Noda, Kisarage, and Tomokane run around making tracks and snow angels in the freshly fallen snow.

Volume seven starts off with the cultural festival. Natsuki-chan, a middle school student in search of abekawa mochi, gets dizzy while searching for food and runs into the main characters, who get really excited when they realize they’ve met previously during summer vacation. Natsuki-chan eagerly awaits her opportunity to enter middle school and join the art club, setting the tone for this final manga volume, which is filled with friendship, hope, eagerness, nostalgia, and an overall love and appreciation for the arts. Throughout the rest of the volume, the girls analyze and draw snowflakes, create their first drawing of the New Year, find the perfect clay with which to create their designs, and make self-portraits.

While it’s easy enough to jump into yonkoma at any point in the plot due to their four-panel structure, this particular series is best enjoyed if read in order so that readers can see the girls’ skills—and their friendship—progress throughout the school year. GA: Geijutsuka Art Design Class is a quick, fun read with appealing artwork. Recommend to teens who like art and slice-of-life manga. The 13-episode anime is available on Crunchyroll.com.

GA: Geijutsuka Art Design Class, vol. 7
by Satoko Kiyuduki
ISBN: 9780316545365
Yen Press, 2016
Publisher Age Rating: T

  • Marissa Lieberman

    Past Reviewer

    Marissa graduated with her MLS from Queens College, NY in 2011 and is a children’s librarian at the East Orange Public Library, NJ where she gets to share her passion of anime and manga by running the tween anime club, ordering manga and graphic novels, and planning Tosho-con. She organized Tosho-con, the first library anime convention in Nassau County, NY back in 2010 and continues to run this successful convention at her current library. Marissa has written articles and presented about graphic novels, manga and library conventions for School Library Journal, New York Comic Con, and library conferences. She also reviews for School Library Journal and Voices of Youth Advocates.

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