OK so welcome to part 1 of HOW I MADE COMIC PAGE, the series of Filler pages which currently replace new comic pages. This is where I get to explain how I make my comics, the purpose being to prove to you guys how easy it is to make comics so that hopefully I can inspire you guys to make comics as well. (The more the merrier!)
So why do I do comics? I enjoy telling stories and I love drawing. So for me, comics allow me to do both. They bring together the powerful visuals found in filmmaking and the length of depth you can get only in traditional novel writing. Furthermore, it’s a relatively new field compared to traditional novel writing, and it’s easier to produce than films. Getting into the comicmaking game now means getting a head start of something that’ll only get bigger and more legitimate as time goes on.
So why should you do comics? Because you want to, that’s it really. Artfucks might want to dictate certain rules for art and that you shouldn’t be allowed to do something if you don’t meet the requirements or if you’re not “supposed” to do it. Well fuck ‘em. Do art (and comics) because you want to do it. Set your own rules for it, that’s what I’ve done!
To which, I before I start I want to point out this caviet: these are the rules I’ve set up for my own system of comicmaking. I’m out to teach you how I do things, but what you do with that knowledge is up to you. I don’t want to make it sound like my way is the only way you should do comics, as opposed to all the artfucks out there who will dictate the opposite.
Anyways, I’ll start getting straight to the point.
LIST OF DEVICES I USE FOR COMICMAKING, AND THEIR PURPOSE:
• 0.5MM MECHANICAL PENCIL, WITH 2B LEAD + ERASER (Photoshop’s Undo function has become a standard in my life; I don’t use ink at all with my work simply because I hate not being able to erase. 2B lead is a soft lead which allows me to draw a nice thick line, but is still pencily enough for me to erase. Sure the lead does smear, but I fix that up later. Personally I’ve been using a Zebra M-301 for about 10 years now, but you obviously don’t have to use the same one.)
• A SHARPIE (This is just to produce the thick outlines around my characters. Otherwise it’s not really necessary, but it’s still nice to have around.)
• A NON-PHOTO BLUE PENCIL (If you’ve ever seen sketches where there is some blue or red color to it, this pencil is what causes it. I use these a lot whenever I want to layout a drawing before I dedicate my pencil to it. Its eraseable qualities are especially handy.)
• A MAGIC MARKER AND RULER (Used to layout frame lines, as seen above. More on this later.)
• A SHEET OF PAPER (This is what I draw my comic on. More on this in a bit.)
• A COMPUTER (Used largely for post-production work.)
That’s pretty much it!
A NOTE ABOUT MY CHOICE OF PAPER:
You can use whatever piece of paper you want. But what I do has a specific reason behind it.
When I started doing comics, I used to just whip out any old sheet of 8.5″x11″ paper to draw on. But as time went by I realized that page dimensions started to become very important to me, largely because I want to sell my comics in a minicomic or whatever. Thing is, a comic done on a 8.5″x11″ sheet of paper doesn’t fit nicely in a minicomic, which is 5.5″x8.5″, much in the same way a widescreen movie doesn’t fit on a regular television screen all that well (at least not without the black bars on the top and bottom). So what I ended up doing was get myself a 8.5″x14″ sheet of paper and print upon it a rectangle that is the right proportion to a minicomic page. Furthermore, on the rectangle I’ve measured it out at various positions, like a third of the page, a quarter, half, etc.; this you might notice on the sides of the rectangle. This is handy for whenever I want to create even frames of other sizes.
The Magic Marker is fortunately of a nice thickness to where all I have to do is line up my ruler at the various positions and just draw straight down the ruler in order to get the nice border like that. Creating a new page is as simple as that. Nifty, huh?
I think that’s pretty much it for Part 1. Making a new comic is really as simple as getting yourself a sheet of paper and something to draw with. And while I use a fancy pencil and sheets of paper with the lines already printed on them, there’s nothing saying you can’t use… oh, I dunno, a brown paper bag and a blue marker. That’s it!
BTW, if you have any questions about this step, ask them now, because I’ll add them to the finalized body when this it all said and done (I’m thinking about turning Nick15.com into an informative art site which collects all my knowledge on how to create art.)
Stick around for Part 2, that’s where I’ll show you how I draw in each frame and page.