It took me three months to finish this comic page

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Swizec
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It took me three months to finish this comic page

Post by Swizec » Wed May 09, 2007 7:39 pm

This took me hellishly too long to complete due to time availability issues ... it was actually in production since February ... geez.

Anyway, as always, all critique is very much welcome.

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Swizec
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Post by Swizec » Thu May 10, 2007 5:18 am

Oh and I would very much like some suggestions on how to improve the style in such a way as to make it quicker to draw. I get sucked into shading and lighting and such and it just isn't working out time-wise.

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Plognark
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Post by Plognark » Thu May 10, 2007 6:30 am

Hmm...do you use a tablet? What program do you use; photoshop? And if so, what version?

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hanzo
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Post by hanzo » Thu May 10, 2007 8:52 am

well... I guess to quicken up things you could try to use a less photorealistic (for the shading I mean) style and try to use just a couple of tones, flat shadows (kind of like cell anim look). I also suggest you do some pencils by hand... my experience is that generally for these kind of things doing things by hand is by far the faster solution.

As for the rest I really suggest you work on colour, for my taste everything is just too saturated and flashy (but that's my personal point of view) and you should also try to avoid to use filters like that... like those blurring fx you have in some panels, a good thumb rule is: if you can tell the filter then you haven't used it right...
Blur effects work fine on real photorealistic painting, when you try to simulate reality through paint... then it can be somehow cinematic... but take care, you have to know how optics work in cinema...

Anyway, looking at it like this I wouldn't call this page finished, it still looks very rough... the things you left as flat colours don't look like a choice, but more like something that still need to be done. This is another thing I'd work on, understand how to leave things unfinished but so that they look like it's intended to be like that
BOLZANO COMICS FESTIVAL 2009

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Frank Stockton
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Post by Frank Stockton » Thu May 10, 2007 11:18 am

this is bizarre looking--there are a lot of things about it that I would normally say to change--but for some odd reason are working for me here.

I like the blurred out backgrounds and the selective form rendering. It's shaky but I think you could be on to something great in the future.

Only advice I'm going to give is to storytelling--as a rule of thumb, you want to keep a character on the same side of the panel all the time, it aids in readability. I can tell in the 2nd and 4th panels that it's the same girl, but it sort of takes me out of the moment to have that realization. Consider keeping them both facing the same direction throughout the panels.


ok keep it up!


frank
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Swizec
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Post by Swizec » Thu May 10, 2007 12:15 pm

@Plognark: I use a tablet and Photoshop 6 running on Wine

@hanzo: yes, I'm wavering between this style and the more simpler cell shaded. My problem is that I believe I couldn't pull off a lineless cell shaded thing ... at least I don't think I could very well. As for the pencils by hand, that has in the past (before I had a tablet) proven to be a very slow process because of the lack of Ctrl+Z. I may be able to draw something half decent, but it, sadly, takes me a lot of tries to get curves just right.

Usually they aren't as flashy and saturated but for some reason I chose this colour panel those three months ago, I really can't tell why from the top of my head anymore. And I agree about filters and almost never use them.

The reason they were used here is that in the 2nd and 3rd panel I needed a quick way to make the main character pop at five am ... my mind was only fixed on finally finishing the bloody thing :P The one used in panel 5 is there because I am as of yet incapable of rendering "speed" on my own. Any tips on how it's done?

Could you elaborate a bit more on how I could make the flat parts look more finished to you? If the answer is perfect edges then I would love some pointers on how smooth edges are done.


@Frank: I'm glad you like the style, even though you reckon it still needs polishing ... which can only be expected, hell it IS only the 7th comic.

Have to say I never realised that about storytelling and the direction characters face, I'll keep it in mind. Personally I'm just glad because this is the most fluently running story I've done graphically so far.

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Plognark
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Post by Plognark » Thu May 10, 2007 12:23 pm

Ok, tablet and PS 6, got it.

There's something too unfinished about the first frame that I'm not keen on. The perspective is a little wonky too, although it may work out with the surrealistic sense of the whole thing.

Maybe clean up the random pedestrians and add some shadows to them.

As mentioned above, you could probably relax a bit on the shading to save some time and energy.

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