Each page is getting a little bit better than the last one. It was fun playing with the light and shade this time around.
I’m finally getting to a point where I can actually use the software and make it do what I want! This. Took. Weeks.
Ezekiel cried, dem gray tones!
Oh guess what, now I see mistakes. Time to go to bed!!!
Here’s what I’ve been working on lately. Remember my little horror comic?
I’ve cleaned it up and added tones and published a couple of pages on webtoons. I still have more pages left to do. I’m repressing the performance anxiety, so I’m fine!
This is why I haven’t been writing a lot lately. I’ve been learning how to use digital software, how to color stuff, clean up lines, add details… resize and save correctly… pretty much everything. Still haven’t really broached color yet. Still nervous about color. Doing this in black and white is good for me though, as a value study. Maybe I’ll try color next time. Or the time after that. Or never. Heh.
So much to learn. One magical day, I will have learned it ALL, and then I’ll be done. Wait, that would actually be horrible. NEVERMIND! I’ll never learn it all. That’s the fun in life.
Anime/manga style art is the way it is for many reasons. Here are the things I like and want to emulate:
- Cartoon styles can be exaggerated, meaning they can be more lively and expressive than realistic styles, which can look static by comparison.
- It’s simple, attractive, and easy to draw, which helps when you’re going to draw an entire book of manga on a deadline.
- The pacing and plot lines. They’re beautifully flowing, interconnected hill climbs, with periodic bursts and falls. They line up perfectly with my EKG. Long-running TV shows also do this well: They’ll have a mini arc within the time between a commercial break, a larger arc in the 30-minute episode, and an even larger arc encompassing the whole season. This makes me happy in a very deep way. I got distracted didn’t I. What was I talking about? Anime art?
What I don’t like:
- I’m not good with faces, and I have trouble telling characters apart sometimes if the artist doesn’t do a great job with character design, because all of their faces are the same.
- It has a standardized visual language to communicate standard emotions or character types. This is cute and very effective, but leaves little room for complex emotions or characters. The best manga writers use these only rarely.
Learning to draw digitally, I was getting pretty frustrated (as my sharpest regular readers no doubt picked up on, haha). I thought, dammit, I CAN DRAW. And I figured I’d do an anime style as a morale booster. It wasn’t as easy as I expected, but it was certainly easier than everything I was attempting. Morale was boosted. I realized I was trying to develop my own style while also trying to learn new software. No wonder I was frustrated.
Last Minute, page 11. It’s been renamed. I seem to recall saying this would be a five or six page comic. Ha!
It still needs proper scanning and shading and a little bit of Photoshop, but I’m just happy to have completed something!
I wanted to post it in full today to celebrate Halloween, so we’re going with my draft pages. At least the whole story is told. I’ll probably clean it up later.
Now get back to work!