Playing with Comics

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Inspired by the amazing demos in our recent step-by-step comics article, I decided to have another go myself (my first attempt were The Manikins comics last year) Here’s how I got on.

DISCLAIMER – This is not a HowTo. This is a HowIDidIt. If you want to follow some decent step by step instructions, read the step-by-step comics article, and follow the advice of someone who knows what they’re doing.

What I Used

  • Sketchbook
  • Faber Castell Grip 2001 Pencil with matching eraser topper
  • Mars Plastic Eraser
  • Pentel Micro-Correct correction fluid
  • Sanford Sharpie Twin Tip
  • Adobe Photoshop Elements
  • A Man With Guitar.

Strengths

  • I had a good idea (well, I thought it was a good idea).
  • I’ll try anything once.
  • I won’t let my weaknesses stop me having a go.

Weaknesses

  • I can’t draw very well.

How I did it

  • You will have no doubt noticed the amount of erasers and correction products on my tools list – there’s a reason for that. Some artists are dead against using erasers, I however depend on them and clutch hold of my Mars Plastic like an artistic security blanket. And that’s how I did my first sketches – drawing and rubbing out, drawing and rubbing out, until I was happy with the general shape of things. I then added more detail and definition (hehe, yeah, don’t worry Fred, compared to you, my skillz are merely irritated). I did large sketches and reduced them down in photoshop.

  • I then went over the lines with a Sharpie, and did any white-over-black bits with the correction fluid. I wanted a good, solid black, and the Sharpie did the job quite nicely. The drawings were then photographed and opened up in Photoshop.

  • In photoshop, I selected all the black bits (yay! I’m getting technical now…) and pasted them into a new image. I tweaked the images a little and added text. The original plans to make the five pictures into a multi-panel comic had to be abandoned when I realised the text would be too small for people to read. So I went for five individual images instead. And decided to put in a PowerPoint slide show, you know, like you do.

  • Er, that’s it.

The Results

  • Sure you want to see the results of my playful, clueless experimentation? Well, there’s the little pic up top there, but if you want to see the comics in all their “glory”, you’ll find them here.

Conclusion

I’m actually quite pleased with the results. OK, it’s no Applegeeks, but I had a laugh doing it, and it was a legitimate excuse to ogle at pictures of you-know-who for a while.

The point I’m trying to make by doing this is to show that concern for the results shouldn’t stop you from giving anything a go, whether it’s drawing comics, painting in watercolour, taking photos or building a web site. The important thing is to enjoy the experience, and if you do, there’s a good chance that the end product of your creative adventure will turn out pretty good anyway.