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"The Do's and Don'ts of Sequential Art", 16th Apr 2012, 9:45 PM #1
ekami♀
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Hey! :> I went to my Seqa club and there was a lecture of the do's and don'ts of comics, and I figured I'd share my notes. o-o

• Do be organized!
• If you're doing a story comic, do pace your storytelling. Outlines, thumbnails, something to plan it out.
• Do plan out your pages with thumbnails to check your layout/flow before you jump into drawing the page
• Do think about where your comic is going. Understand your characters and your world, so you can easily predict what would happen.
• Do plan ahead. Know the beginning and the end, and leave the middle for experimenting.• Do everything on purpose, everything should have a reason. "It looks cool" doesn't count.
• Do Keep your gutters the same size. It just looks sloppy otherwise. Generally the bigger your gutters are, the more time in between the panels.
• Do cooperate with other people. Get a team, not necessarily a people to work on a comic with, but to bounce ideas off of. If one team doesn't work, don't be afraid to find a new group.
• Don't publish your baby. That is, don't publish that story you've had since forever and you couldn't bear to change anything about. You shouldn't be afraid to delete entire parts or change things up completely. Did you know Avatar the Last Airbender was at first a story about a boy, his dog-bear, and a little toy robot?
• Do hang around with people better than yourself. Adopt things from their style, process, or techniques, and keep working to improve!
Do steal like an artist
• Don't Steal. Don't be like this guy.
• Don't say "It's my style." Excuses make a weak and unprofessional artist.
• Do draw from life and keep a sketchbook. Even if you're just doodling, it helps. Also, the only people who think referencing is cheating are dumb people. Don't be dumb.
• Don't have a bad attitude. Don't be like Tom Preston. Do be good, nice, and on time.
• Don't put down your own art. Let other people judge first, because when you point out what's wrong, they won't be able to take their focus off of it.
• Do keep an updated portfolio. Work from four years ago isn't going to cut it. (However, if you do have a really amazing piece, just say it's recent)• Do just start. Don't just draw your favorite bits, nobody really cares about that. Don't keep putting it off.
• Do take risks. It's a webcomic, what's the worst thing that's going to happen?
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16th Apr 2012, 9:52 PM #2
mushroomisland♀

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Heeeey I do all that XD So proud of myself. (But wish someone had told me this earlier. I had to go through a couple failures to get all that by myself) It took me a while to understand the "steal like an artist" part. But now I fully agree with that guy :)
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16th Apr 2012, 9:53 PM #3
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C: lovely advice lady, thank you very much for sharing

also "people who think referencing is cheating are dumb people" oh my god yes, yes they are. That is the number one thing that irks me when people see me using references to draw something.
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16th Apr 2012, 11:53 PM #4
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I've been inspired to redraw my comic in comic-book format. Gotta make it look professional.
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16th Apr 2012, 11:55 PM #5
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Thanks for sharing. That is a great summary of advice.
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17th Apr 2012, 1:38 AM #6
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• Do everything on purpose, everything should have a reason. "It looks cool" doesn't count.
To expand on this... Every character should have a reason. "This scene is cool and I needed a side character to be in it" doesn't count. If a character has a (more than cameo) speaking role then he/she should end up serving some type of purpose for the overarching story. Don't give characters screen time and then lead nowhere, unless it's an intentional red herring/ plot twist.

• Do Keep your gutters the same size. It just looks sloppy otherwise. Generally the bigger your gutters are, the more time in between the panels.
Manga does keep all vertical vs all horizontal gutters in different sizes. It's ok as long as it's a consistent rule.

• Don't say "It's my style." Excuses make a weak and unprofessional artist.
I mentally throttle every single noob who says this excuse.
But then I smile when I realize I don't give a F about this noob anyways.
^____________^

• Don't have a bad attitude. Don't be like Tom Preston. Do be good, nice, and on time.
Who's Tom and what did he do?
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17th Apr 2012, 1:44 AM #7
mushroomisland♀

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MLai:

• Don't say "It's my style." Excuses make a weak and unprofessional artist.
I mentally throttle every single noob who says this excuse.
But then I smile when I realize I don't give a F about this noob anyways.
^____________^



agreed..There's clearly a difference between a unique style and a flat out terrible comic. And it's ok if it's terrible, the ones I can't stand are people who can't take advice...
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17th Apr 2012, 1:46 AM #8
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MY COMIC IS THE BEST COMIC WHY DON'T I HAVE MORE SUBSCRIBERS???!!! IT'S AMAZING JUST LOOK AT IIIIIIT!!!! IT'S SO UNIQUE AND ORIGINAL!!!!
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17th Apr 2012, 1:50 AM #9
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OnlyFoolsAndVikings:MY COMIC IS THE BEST COMIC WHY DON'T I HAVE MORE SUBSCRIBERS???!!! IT'S AMAZING JUST LOOK AT IIIIIIT!!!! IT'S SO UNIQUE AND ORIGINAL!!!!


Because your dog farts.
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17th Apr 2012, 1:50 AM #10
OnlyFoolsAndVikings♀
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:O that was uncalled for Unka :'c
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17th Apr 2012, 1:51 AM #11
mushroomisland♀

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OnlyFoolsAndVikings:MY COMIC IS THE BEST COMIC WHY DON'T I HAVE MORE SUBSCRIBERS???!!! IT'S AMAZING JUST LOOK AT IIIIIIT!!!! IT'S SO UNIQUE AND ORIGINAL!!!!


You have 16 pages and 145 subscribers...what more can you want?? o_o I ENVY YOU

edit: Oh damn the other one has 258! How do you do this stuff? It's like magic!
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17th Apr 2012, 1:52 AM #12
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mushroomisland:
OnlyFoolsAndVikings:MY COMIC IS THE BEST COMIC WHY DON'T I HAVE MORE SUBSCRIBERS???!!! IT'S AMAZING JUST LOOK AT IIIIIIT!!!! IT'S SO UNIQUE AND ORIGINAL!!!!


You have 16 pages and 145 subscribers...what more can you want?? o_o I ENVY YOU


it was a joke about Noobs :u lol
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17th Apr 2012, 1:53 AM #13
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OnlyFoolsAndVikings::O that was uncalled for Unka :'c


It's all over the internet.
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17th Apr 2012, 1:55 AM #14
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*throws trantrum*

Waaaaaaaaaaaahaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhaaaaaaa D':
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17th Apr 2012, 1:58 AM #15
Unka John♂

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OnlyFoolsAndVikings:*throws trantrum*

Waaaaaaaaaaaahaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhaaaaaaa D':


Now you take that tantrum right over to the venting thread, young lady.
<<attempts to appear all stern and stuff.
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17th Apr 2012, 2:04 AM #16
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I have to ask, because I've never really know... What is a thumbnail when referring to comics? I would assume a small sketch, but I fail to see how that would help any more than thinking out the page layout before drawing it and doing the panels in pencil in case you screw up.
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17th Apr 2012, 2:45 AM #17
MLai♂

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Macey:I have to ask, because I've never really know... What is a thumbnail when referring to comics? I would assume a small sketch, but I fail to see how that would help any more than thinking out the page layout before drawing it and doing the panels in pencil in case you screw up.

That's exactly how I do it.

1. Mentally thumbnail while staring at a blank page. An observer may think I'm sitting there having writer's block. I'm actually seeing invisible panels on a piece of white paper.
2. Draw the blank panels. An observer sees me drawing blank panels. I'm seeing invisible picture in my blank panels, and drawing the panels solidifies the invisible images for me.
3. Pencil out the heretofore invisible images.

However, other ppl like to draw a rough draft on a scrap paper before drawing the page. Different preferences.
17th Apr 2012, 2:47 AM #18
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yeah I just fill up a small A5 sketch book with sketch version of the page, just so I know what I'm fitting in without fucking up my water colour paper (since erasing lots of lines on watercolour paper kind of screws up the paper), they're not the tiny thumbnail sketches that I see heaps of people doing though.
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17th Apr 2012, 2:52 AM #19
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But isn't there a rule in art that something can be soooo bad it's good? So I should do all the don'ts and don't do all the dos! Or at least don't do the don'ts that do make the dos not don'ts.
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17th Apr 2012, 3:10 AM #20
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Macey:I have to ask, because I've never really know... What is a thumbnail when referring to comics? I would assume a small sketch, but I fail to see how that would help any more than thinking out the page layout before drawing it and doing the panels in pencil in case you screw up.


When I am drawing a page I will often make a lot of different thumbnails planing out how I want it to look. They are just quick sketches thinking about the panel placement, the angles you use, the poses, things like that. So they are just super quick sketches of what I think the page will look like, and since I put little to now really drawing time into them I don't feel about about trashing it if I don't like how it looks. Plus, it means that there are less pencil lines to erase.

Not everyone needs to use them, but I always make thumbnails of my pages. (I actually do it for the whole chapter at the start because it lets me see the whole chapter and how much time I am devoting to each plot point in a more visual way than I get from just the script.)
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Forum > General discussion > The Do's and Don'ts of Sequential Art
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