Forum > Webcomic & Art discussion > Comic creation- minor obstacles
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"Comic creation- minor obstacles", 5 days ago, 12:57 AM #1
jamanning7

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What are slightly annoying things you have to deal with when making comics/art? Be a little more specific than saying "the art" because everyone has different skill levels, tools and medium to make the experience more unique.

My experience:


Feel free to rant.
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5 days ago, 1:29 AM #2
mitchellbravo

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-Getting too sweepy when I'm coloring, so marker goes out of boundaries and I have to fix it in post.

-I have the pressing too hard problem too with pencil, though it tends to happen more if I'm drunkenly slamming the thing into the paper, or am in one of those art ruts where you redraw a face 5 times and it still looks off model

-Forgetting some detail and not noticng it until the page is up or I'm well into the editing process and it's a little late to rescan and start over- usually jewelry, freckles, a small prop that was supposed to be held. Some of it I can jury-rig out of existing elements on the page, or if it's small enough I can recreate it entirely digitally, but stuff like freckles that's not really an option.

- My skew. -_- I don't know if it's because of my vision problems or just a bad habit of tilting my head when I draw, but every page i make comes out skewed. One of the first steps I have to do after scanning is slant everything to get it to look less dilapidated. I think a few months ago I started actively trying to tilt my head the other way to counteract it, which helped the skew somewhat, but somehow it still comes through. The worst is when I properly align some elements of the page- making sure walpaper pinstripes and walls and other vertical/horizontal lines are square- but then other elements are skewed, and it's really hard to fix one without affecting the other, like a really depressing Rubik's cube.

-Having a hard time telling when a pen is out of ink, or a nib needs to be replaced, or both. I've got a little slip of paper where I've kept track of the dates when I last chagned nibs/inks but I'm conscious about wasting them if they're still useful, and comparing pages-per-nib and months-per-nib ratios of the past yields little useful infromation about whether it's time to replace them. If stuff starts looking crummy, I know it's probably time, but I never feel all that good about it.

-Not knowing how much life is left in a marker that is a dominant color of a page- this sometimes spurs creative and more beautiful/interesting coloring by necessitating the use of gradients and introducing other colors, but sometimes dammit you just want the sky to all be one color and don't want to do it on the computer

-wet hair touching the page, cats jumping near the page and it slides and gets folded and creased up, (hasn't happened in a long time but) milk/beverages spilling on the page.

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5 days ago, 2:55 AM #3
Lee Lines

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My problem has been the lack of a decent scanner. I originally was forced to go to the library to make reduced copies to scan. the scanner, a Pandigital wand scanner with sheet feeder/charger,
image
was always too dark. Fortunately I could lighten them up with the Bleach setting in Android Gallery.
I wanted to be able to scan without the library trips. I eventually found a Longjoy large format camera on Amazon.
image
Big mistake, the pictures were darker than ever with hotspots yet, and keystoning, which is very hard to fix.
Worst of all Android upgraded Gallery and removed Bleach!
Though I participate in the exchanges, this has kept Fantomah on hiatus.
I finally found an affordable scanner, a Fujisu Fi 5530 C2
image
on eBay. Unfortunately they forgot the AC adapter. (But what's it doing in the picture?)
It should arrive this week, and hopefully pictures like this will come to an end!
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5 days ago, 7:42 AM #4
jamanning7

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-Getting too sweepy when I'm coloring, so marker goes out of boundaries and I have to fix it in post.

-I have the pressing too hard problem too with pencil, though it tends to happen more if I'm drunkenly slamming the thing into the paper, or am in one of those art ruts where you redraw a face 5 times and it still looks off model


It sounds like you're the type to muscle your way through a page with not a lot of planning, kind of like me. (It's not a bad thing as long as the page looks okay at the end.)

I haven't used a good pencil yet. It's either a mechanical .7 pencil or Number 2 Pencil. If the led is too soft, it gets smudged up and messy. Too hard and it cuts the paper, making the drawing unerasable.

-Forgetting some detail and not noticng it until the page is up or I'm well into the editing process and it's a little late to rescan and start over- usually jewelry, freckles, a small prop that was supposed to be held. Some of it I can jury-rig out of existing elements on the page, or if it's small enough I can recreate it entirely digitally, but stuff like freckles that's not really an option.


I sort of forgot about this one. That happened to me a few times. The worst case:(large image)


- My skew. -_- I don't know if it's because of my vision problems or just a bad habit of tilting my head when I draw, but every page i make comes out skewed. One of the first steps I have to do after scanning is slant everything to get it to look less dilapidated.


How bad is it? Is it skewed so much that someone would notice or just you?

but then other elements are skewed, and it's really hard to fix one without affecting the other, like a really depressing Rubik's cube.


Honestly, the Rubik's cube just makes me and many others feel stupid.


-Having a hard time telling when a pen is out of ink, or a nib needs to be replaced, or both. I've got a little slip of paper where I've kept track of the dates when I last chagned nibs/inks but I'm conscious about wasting them if they're still useful, and comparing pages-per-nib and months-per-nib ratios of the past yields little useful infromation about whether it's time to replace them.


I thought nibs could last for a lifetime if you take care of them. Depends on the brand? How long do your nibs last? So far, mine are three months old and got through 30 pages and show no signs of declining. I'm washing and drying every time I'm done. Sometimes, I use a nib cleaner. Revived an old nib using said cleaner. It's not a magic eraser though.

-Not knowing how much life is left in a marker that is a dominant color of a page


Markers are either the best thing or most trash thing ever. Sharpies and microns feel good when they're new. They also die fast in my experience so I use them less.

-wet hair touching the page, cats jumping near the page and it slides and gets folded and creased up, (hasn't happened in a long time but) milk/beverages spilling on the page.


Not to intrude on your personal life, but the only way this could happen I think is taking a shower beforehand. Do you work in the living room or something or are your cats stealth ninjas?

Don't have any drinks near your art ever. The only thing I have to fear is spilling the ink bottle on my work or my bed since the desk is right next to it.


I know a lot of these are just problems that go hand in hand with working with traditional media, but I wouldn't have it any other way.


Yep.
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My problem has been the lack of a decent scanner.


Scanner's the most interesting to discuss, just scan it and you're done, but they're important or else about half of the artwork wouldn't be posted. (Could use camera's but it's not good quality). I don't know what qualifies as a good scanner because I only used a few of them in school and have one at home. The best one probably scans bigger than 8.5x11 and comes with something like a built in photoshop. No idea where to get something like this. Are there scanners specifically for art?

Can skip. Rambling about my scanner troubles.


I eventually found a Longjoy large format camera on Amazon.
image
Big mistake, the pictures were darker than ever with hotspots yet, and keystoning, which is very hard to fix. Worst of all Android upgraded Gallery and removed Bleach!


That does suck. I don't know how amazon works but you could see samples first? But it's Android's fault. It's not an upgrade if you remove features!

I finally found an affordable scanner, a Fujisu Fi 5530 C2
image
on eBay. Unfortunately they forgot the AC adapter. (But what's it doing in the picture?)
It should arrive this week, and hopefully pictures like this will come to an end!


Well, things will be easier now. Good luck!

While you wait, I'll show how to fix your scan with paint. Use the select tool. Hit delete. Perfectly white.



Don't actually do this. The edges around the drawing will be blurry. You can technically do it. It's takes a grueling amount of patience. It's almost 3 am anyway. I'm tired. It took two hours to type this post. I think my grammar got worse as it went on.
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5 days ago, 7:53 AM #5
Reapeageddon

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As a person who's working on an action comic, making a lot of complicated action poses and thinking of the right angle the camera should be in for a panel is hard work
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5 days ago, 8:05 AM #6
jamanning7

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As a person who's working on an action comic, making a lot of complicated action poses and thinking of the right angle the camera should be in for a panel is hard work


It's easier in a way, because you're doing an important, but fun moment, so it's easier to stay motivated.
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5 days ago, 8:16 AM #7
killersteak
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I have a blue pencil, well, 2mm lead for a lead holder. If you don't need the original page to be pristine, the blue can be taken out digitally, and because it won't erase it can be that stage between sketch and ink.
I also use a thicker paper than standard copy, either Bristol or matte photo paper at 210gsm minimum.

My biggest hurdle is inking the panel borders. I tried raising a ruler by gluing cork under it but the dip pen still wobbles, and the cork can smear the lines I've just made if I position it wrong. I dislike regular pens because they're not as black as the dip pen ink, and it looks off to me.
5 days ago, 9:01 AM #8
jamanning7

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I have a blue pencil, well, 2mm lead for a lead holder. If you don't need the original page to be pristine, the blue can be taken out digitally, and because it won't erase it can be that stage between sketch and ink.


I thought the point of a blue pencil was to be invisible. If it still show up in the scans, then it there isn't really a point in it, unless I'm missing something.

My biggest hurdle is inking the panel borders. I tried raising a ruler by gluing cork under it but the dip pen still wobbles, and the cork can smear the lines I've just made if I position it wrong.


I gave up using dip pen for the borders. Too inconsistent and takes almost as long as inside the panels. With micron and a ruler it takes about five minutes and saves half an hour.

The first few pages I have uses a dip pen for borders. It's rough but it looks better and charming to me even if no one seems to notice.




I dislike regular pens because they're not as black as the dip pen ink, and it looks off to me.


Agreed. To add to this, the pen is at a set size and doesn't taper. So it looks a bit 'soulless.'
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5 days ago, 11:45 AM #9
killersteak
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I thought the point of a blue pencil was to be invisible. If it still show up in the scans, then it there isn't really a point in it, unless I'm missing something.


scanning hardware is so good now that a true non-copy blue doesnt really exist, iirc. the point of it is its resilience to erasure by an eraser, while still easily being able to be taken out with a minor digital tweak.
you do your sketch in the greylead, the darker the grade the more easily erasable that is, then work out your final lines with the blue pencil and go over it all with an eraser. then you can ink over the blue.
5 days ago, 11:07 PM #10
mitchellbravo

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jamanning7:It sounds like you're the type to muscle your way through a page with not a lot of planning, kind of like me. (It's not a bad thing as long as the page looks okay at the end.)

I haven't used a good pencil yet. It's either a mechanical .7 pencil or Number 2 Pencil. If the led is too soft, it gets smudged up and messy. Too hard and it cuts the paper, making the drawing unerasable.

Yup, I just do regular #2 pencils. They're predictable and I know what to expect from 'em. I'm gentler when sober.




(Not proud of this fact. It's pretty lazy.)

I disagree, it sounds like you went through a good deal of work to make sure you didn't lose work you already had done!


How bad is it? Is it skewed so much that someone would notice or just you?

Not sure, haven't asked, haven't shared art that wasn't fixed in a while. It's enough that when I flip the image I somtimes audibly say "Oh, god." Just lends itself to kind of an amateurish vibe so I try to fix it a little bit.


Honestly, the Rubik's cube just makes me and many others feel stupid.

:P


I thought nibs could last for a lifetime if you take care of them. Depends on the brand? How long do your nibs last? So far, mine are three months old and got through 30 pages and show no signs of declining. I'm washing and drying every time I'm done. Sometimes, I use a nib cleaner. Revived an old nib using said cleaner. It's not a magic eraser though.

Huh, I never thought of that... they sell refills/replacements, so I thought they were meant to be replaced ._. I'm using copic multiliners, not like fountain nibs though? Is that what you're using?


Markers are either the best thing or most trash thing ever. Sharpies and microns feel good when they're new. They also die fast in my experience so I use them less.

Yup. They revolutionized my art for sure but can also bring a lot of misery. My copics can be refilled, but I only have about 10 copics in various skin tones (I found myself burning through those the fastest since they're most consistent page to page). The rest hundred or however many are Prismacolors. I "ride them till they squeal"*, and a while back I took ones that had dried out and added rubbing alcohol (or maybe somethign else? idk, something you buy at the pharmacy) to the wells to revive what was left. It doesn't add more color, you get a washed out version of the previous color, but you can use it to some neat effects and prolong the life of the marker a bit. (And maybe get some interesting half-tones or in-between shades not manufactured by prismacolor). I haven't done the refilling song and dance since 2014 or 15 though so I have a puff-mint bucket full of dead markers that need reviving


Not to intrude on your personal life, but the only way this could happen I think is taking a shower beforehand. Do you work in the living room or something or are your cats stealth ninjas?

Yea, the showering. I work best at night and that's also washing up time :) Usually I pull it back and it hasn't happened in a while- more likely to come from errant spittle from excessive whistling these days.
Cats usually don't come up on my desk, and I've recently got better in the habit of putting the pages in progress away in a folder for protection. The jumping tends to happen when I'm not actively working.
My one cat rarely bothers me, the other is less stealth ninja and more screeching gray Kool-Aid Man.

Don't have any drinks near your art ever. The only thing I have to fear is spilling the ink bottle on my work or my bed since the desk is right next to it.

Oh I know I'm asking for trouble. But I often have a beverage of some sort nearby. Need a little fuel for the fire ;) It's behind and off to the side out of whacking range, but you never know~~~
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4 days ago, 2:23 AM #11
jellyfishin

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jamanning7:I thought the point of a blue pencil was to be invisible. If it still show up in the scans, then it there isn't really a point in it, unless I'm missing something.


As mentioned earlier by killersteak, scanning technology picks up on blue quite a bit. From experience, it's still possible to get non-repro blue to not show up on a high-end scanner, but it needs to be a really, really, really, really light mark.

Speaking of new scanning technology and minor obstacles, oh boy does it ever suck when I finish scanning in a page and find my scans need further editing than usual because of tiny specks in the glass.
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4 days ago, 2:46 AM #12
killersteak
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jellyfishin:tiny specks in the glass.


I have bloom marks in the glass of mine that I can't wipe away. not enough to warrant a new scanner, but a nuisance. no idea how they get there.
4 days ago, 3:59 AM #13
jamanning7

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Huh, I never thought of that... they sell refills/replacements, so I thought they were meant to be replaced ._. I'm using copic multiliners, not like fountain nibs though? Is that what you're using?


I'm using a dip pen. The ink and nibs have to be bought separately. I thought you were using a dip pen. I never used a fountain pen so it probably works differently and needs to be replaced more often. Keep doing what you're doing right now.
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As mentioned earlier by killersteak, scanning technology picks up on blue quite a bit. From experience, it's still possible to get non-repro blue to not show up on a high-end scanner, but it needs to be a really, really, really, really light mark.


It must take a lot of skill to use it right.

Speaking of new scanning technology and minor obstacles, oh boy does it ever suck when I finish scanning in a page and find my scans need further editing than usual because of tiny specks in the glass.


That's annoying to deal with. I'm not sure if this is a good solution, but Windex might work to clean the scanner bed. I heard it could damage the glass.
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I have bloom marks in the glass of mine that I can't wipe away. not enough to warrant a new scanner, but a nuisance. no idea how they get there.


Probably invisible government spys.
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4 days ago, 6:53 AM #14
Amazing Chris Godbey
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As I've said in other threads, I draw every panel on its own 9x6-inch page. Which makes scanning the comic VERY tedious. I feel like most of us will scan one page at a time. I have to do it two PANELS at a time. Takes forever. At least three times as long.

And while it's not a problem relating to the Comic Fury version of WiaC, having to chop up the pages and rearrange the panels to work in a vertical format for WEBTOON is a pain as well. I mean, I could just upload the pages as they are, but I feel like I'm not taking advantage of the platform being a primarily mobile experience if I do.
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4 days ago, 11:33 PM #15
mitchellbravo

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Amazing Chris Godbey:As I've said in other threads, I draw every panel on its own 9x6-inch page. Which makes scanning the comic VERY tedious. I feel like most of us will scan one page at a time. I have to do it two PANELS at a time. Takes forever. At least three times as long.


It took me way too long to realize you didn't say 9x6 inch page, just picturing you slaving away on these tiny pages and using a scanner the size of a smartphone

Just curious- What leads you to work so big? If it's easier for you to draw that size I get it, but I feel like you have a simple and clean enough style you could get away with working smaller.
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3 days ago, 6:25 AM #16
Amazing Chris Godbey
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mitchellbravo:It took me way too long to realize you didn't say 9x6 inch page, just picturing you slaving away on these tiny pages and using a scanner the size of a smartphone

Weird in a Can, by Chris Godbey and Scott Lang.

mitchellbravo:Just curious- What leads you to work so big? If it's easier for you to draw that size I get it, but I feel like you have a simple and clean enough style you could get away with working smaller.

I found that working bigger like that almost forces me to focus more on each panel, which allows me to (despite having a rather simplistic style) add some detail (like those short little grey lines I add to indicate depth) that'd be harder to do if I was working smaller.
Also, while I try to use the finest-point pens I can find, I think the lines would still be too thick if I worked smaller.

And this reminds me of the time I got a post-it note and a magnifying glass, and tried to do the smallest possible drawings of George and Phil that I could:

image

So...there's that.
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3 days ago, 8:35 AM #17
Lee Lines

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My scanner arrived and the first thing i did was re-scan the page i posted the other day.

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3 days ago, 8:49 AM #18
jamanning7

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Lee Lines:My scanner arrived and the first thing i did was re-scan the page i posted the other day.



:)
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3 days ago, 9:27 AM #19
ReinderDijkhuis

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I had a big continuity goof the other day when I dedicated all of Page 18 of a comic to the lead character bashing open a locker to get someone's jacket, and then in Page 19, I never drew the jacket again while working traditionally. I had to draw it in digitally after scanning, which turned out to be relatively easy, but it was a big "D'oh!" moment for me.
"That’s what I get for using printer paper.", 3 days ago, 9:37 AM #20
Cope

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When I’m erasing pencil lines and THE PAPER TEARS.
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Forum > Webcomic & Art discussion > Comic creation- minor obstacles
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