Informal ed

By NINA MACLAUGHLIN  |  August 4, 2010

LUSCIOUS LOTIONS, SIMPLE SALVES In Fight Club, the secret ingredient to the soaps they made was dumpster bags full of human fat and flesh. That's not what happens here. Instead, you'll use organic ingredients — plant-matter primarily — to create a lip balm, a body lotion, and an herbal salve. Some of the healing properties of herbs will be explored, and you'll learn how to create herbal oils. Your skin will thank you.

August 21 | $14 | Boston Center for Adult Education |

COMIC BOOK ILLUSTRATION How do you make Wolverine's chops just burly enough? How do you create such menace in The Preacher? Why is the Tick blue? Comics are an art form; graphic novels share self space more and more with the regular kind. The class examines panel layout, storytelling, timing, and composition, and in the end, you'll have a series of sequential pages, the debut of the next Batman, Iron Man, or Punisher, or the next Maus, Blankets, or Persepolis.

September 8 | $705 | School of the Museum of Fine Arts |

POETIC FURY: MADNESS, INSPIRATION, GENIUS This is the most traditionally academic of the offerings here, but with a course description that includes the words mania, prophecy, ecstasy, poetic creative, and erotic desire, we figured it'd be worth tossing in.

August 31| $625 | Harvard Extension School |

I LOVE SUSHI! You can't chuck any old slab of raw fish down on the cutting board, wrap it in rice and seaweed and call it a day. It ain't safe. But sushi doesn't have to be reserved for Japanese restaurants and supermarket take-out. Sushi making is a bit of an art ? from how to select the freshest fish to how to slice, assemble, display the food. The course will show you how to make a couple classic Japanese apps (crunchy shrimp and veggie tempura) and miso soup, as well as how to prepare maki, sashimi, nigiri, and the ever-popular California roll.

September 23 | $100 | Boston Center for Adult Education |

STROKE TECHNIQUE Use your imagination. Hint: you'll get wet.

September 13 to October 24 | $120 | Boston Center for Adult Education |

Nina MacLaughlin can be reached at

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