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AC's Thread in the AC

Agent ColemanAgent Coleman Registered User regular
edited October 2012 in Artist's Corner
Hello all,

So recently (July 1st, 2009) I started up my own webcomic and have been looking to improve on my skills so I can pay the bills. Here are some of my most recent comics.
comic038.jpg
comic036.jpg
comic037.jpg
comic035.jpg
comic033.jpg

And also, seeing how this has just been collecting dust, here is my Thesis film from college.

I look forward to hearing back from you guys.

Agent Coleman on
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Posts

  • iglidanteiglidante Registered User
    edited October 2009
    Some of these have a PBF feel (which is good). The "hot cakes" one made me laugh. The gun one didn't do it for me, but the one after it was amusing. I think those two strips really should be one. Kind of like this:

    PBF229-Miggs.jpg

    Same kind of concept, and it works well in 3 panels.

    The art is serviceable (but your shadows are really bad - it looks like everyone has five-day-bender under eye bags), and doesn't get in the way of the jokes. Color choice is kind of bland.

    But keep it up - I think there's some promise here.

    EDIT: Watch your punctuation. The second gun strip is missing question marks, and the others might have similar errors (I haven't checked).

    EDIT AGAIN: I read the description of the hotcakes comic on your site, and the joke you think you're telling isn't the joke I heard. I read it as "they are selling boxes like hotcakes, therefore the guy selling hotcakes has gone out of business." You intended it as "hot cakes actually don't sell very well, so Donna is false in her statement." I like my version better.

    iglidante on
    Comedy Reflux
  • iglidanteiglidante Registered User
    edited October 2009
    I found another one on your site. I thought I knew the punchline, and then I read your hint, and realized I had it completely wrong.

    comic031.jpg

    I thought the deer killed and started eating the cop. I guess the "honk honk" was supposed to tell me that a truck was coming, but I completely missed it. It's unintentionally creepy as a result, but you really need to watch your panels and make sure the action is clear. I mean, after a few reads it starts to come together that a truck was coming, the cop was cut off mid-sentence, and the truck is later seen in the distance. But a quick read, not so much.

    iglidante on
  • tynictynic PICNIC BADASS Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited October 2009
    Nah, I got it. I mean, I didn't laugh, but I got it.

    tynic on
  • beavotronbeavotron Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    you know what, i think a lot of these have potential, but fall just thiiiissss short of making me chuckle
    and i think really the only remedy for this is to keep at it, make some more and work on your writing and staging.

    i'm sure lots of people are going to say stuff about the art, but i dunno, i'm generally of the unpopular opinion that if the writing's good the art can suffer a bit, so i'll leave it to those guys to pick it to pieces.

    friendbear was the best comic of all time
    and it had awful art.

    beavotron on
  • iglidanteiglidante Registered User
    edited October 2009
    tynic wrote: »
    Nah, I got it. I mean, I didn't laugh, but I got it.

    Eh, maybe I was just dense or didn't read it correctly. But I still think it wasn't quite as clear as it could have been, visual clue -wise. Here, I made it better:
    deer_cop_redo.jpg

    iglidante on
    Comedy Reflux
  • beavotronbeavotron Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    that's... not better
    all you did is get rid of honk honk
    that wasn't what was holding it back.
    you seemingly took out the truck too

    so... you made it even less clear that he was hit by a truck.....

    beavotron on
  • sgt scruffiansgt scruffian Registered User
    edited October 2009
    That deer one is pretty great, but I think it might be more clear if you had the truck coming towards the deer from the background as opposed to off-screen. You might need to shorten the deer-cop's text a bit to fit it and a "honk honk" but I believe it would sell the joke more clearly. Regardless, I chuckled.

    The color choice sells the art short I think, try experimenting with colors outside of the primaries.

    sgt scruffian on
    randomSecondPanel.php
  • iglidanteiglidante Registered User
    edited October 2009
    beavotron wrote: »
    that's... not better
    all you did is get rid of honk honk
    that wasn't what was holding it back.
    you seemingly took out the truck too

    so... you made it even less clear that he was hit by a truck.....

    No no, I was making a joke. In my original post, I said I thought the deer had killed and started eating the cop. In my "better" version I took away the truck completely so it was more in line with my original interpretation. Unfunny joke is all.

    iglidante on
  • beavotronbeavotron Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    iglidante wrote: »
    beavotron wrote: »
    that's... not better
    all you did is get rid of honk honk
    that wasn't what was holding it back.
    you seemingly took out the truck too

    so... you made it even less clear that he was hit by a truck.....

    No no, I was making a joke. In my original post, I said I thought the deer had killed and started eating the cop. In my "better" version I took away the truck completely so it was more in line with my original interpretation. Unfunny joke is all.

    oh i should read more

    beavotron on
  • iglidanteiglidante Registered User
    edited October 2009
    beavotron wrote: »
    iglidante wrote: »
    beavotron wrote: »
    that's... not better
    all you did is get rid of honk honk
    that wasn't what was holding it back.
    you seemingly took out the truck too

    so... you made it even less clear that he was hit by a truck.....

    No no, I was making a joke. In my original post, I said I thought the deer had killed and started eating the cop. In my "better" version I took away the truck completely so it was more in line with my original interpretation. Unfunny joke is all.

    oh i should read more

    Me not reading the comic more thoroughly is the reason it even got started, so I'll admit to that as well.

    iglidante on
  • Agent ColemanAgent Coleman Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    Thanks for all the good words and input, eh. Though it sounds like I need to make the comics more clear and work on my colours. Perhaps adding tire tracks onto Deer Cops carcass would make it more clear.
    iglidante wrote: »

    The art is serviceable (but your shadows are really bad - it looks like everyone has five-day-bender under eye bags), and doesn't get in the way of the jokes. Color choice is kind of bland.

    EDIT AGAIN: I read the description of the hotcakes comic on your site, and the joke you think you're telling isn't the joke I heard. I read it as "they are selling boxes like hotcakes, therefore the guy selling hotcakes has gone out of business." You intended it as "hot cakes actually don't sell very well, so Donna is false in her statement." I like my version better.


    Hmm, I like your version too. And as far as the shadows under the eyes go, I guess I've been trying to give them some depth, but perhaps I should try a different approach.

    Agent Coleman on
  • MustangMustang Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    Some of these are actually pretty funny. If you get your art up to scratch and better able to emote your charachters, I think this could be a very good comic.

    Mustang on
  • Agent ColemanAgent Coleman Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    I worked on experimenting with colours a little bit, but nothing intense. Also I've changed the shadows on the eyes around, not sure what I think of it yet.
    comic039.jpg

    Agent Coleman on
  • ASimPersonASimPerson Cold... ... and hard.Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    beavotron wrote: »
    friendbear was the best comic of all time
    and it had awful art.

    Whoa, people other than me and the people I hung out with on IRC back in high school (one of whom made it) have actually heard of friendbear?

    Hold on, my mind is being blown.

    ASimPerson on
    redoctober2.png
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  • iglidanteiglidante Registered User
    edited October 2009
    I worked on experimenting with colours a little bit, but nothing intense. Also I've changed the shadows on the eyes around, not sure what I think of it yet.
    comic039.jpg

    I think you're making some decent color choices here. You're staying away from primaries for the most part, which is good. They don't quite pop enough, though. In the first room, having the floor the same color as the walls is kind of bland. I don't mind it as much in the theater because it's supposed to be dark.

    iglidante on
  • Agent ColemanAgent Coleman Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    iglidante wrote: »
    I think you're making some decent color choices here. You're staying away from primaries for the most part, which is good. They don't quite pop enough, though. In the first room, having the floor the same color as the walls is kind of bland. I don't mind it as much in the theater because it's supposed to be dark.

    Yeah I'm not sure why but with all my floors I tend to make them a lighter shade then the wall that surrounds them. I should probably shy away from that though.

    Agent Coleman on
  • iglidanteiglidante Registered User
    edited October 2009
    I'd just make color choices with a conscious thought as to what colors are typically used for things. The bright blue door frame on the red wall is an odd choice. That doesn't mean it can't work, but it's bold - I'd stick the paler color on the wall instead of the floor, maybe.

    But this is nitpicking - just play with colors enough and you'll find the combinations that work the best. I hate trying to choose colors at random, too - it's hard to make a good choice. Are you using swatch books as a starting point? That can at least give you a quick way to check variations.

    iglidante on
  • Agent ColemanAgent Coleman Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    As far as picking colours I've just been using Photoshop (Not the swatches on the side, the actual colour picker).

    Yeah as far as that blue door frame, I'm not too sure what I was thinking with that.

    So as far as my actual drawing goes, what's the biggest thing I should work on changing/fixing? I'll admit my hands are suspect, but whenever I do try and draw realistic hands, I can't seem to give them a decent line width or else they become oversized.

    Agent Coleman on
  • iglidanteiglidante Registered User
    edited October 2009
    Your cartoon style is serviceable for what you're doing (a humor comic), but if I had to pick one thing you really need to work on, I'd say facial expressions. You've got the CAD half-lidded eyes and dangly-mouths going on, and everyone seems to have the same basic expression. If you put more emotion into the eyes and mouths, it would go a long way toward making your jokes pop, even if the rest of the art stayed the same.

    iglidante on
  • NappuccinoNappuccino Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    Even the rather minimalist style of Cyanide and happyness, the expressions do alot to sell the joke

    such as this one tooyoung.png.

    its the subtle differences in expression of one character, and huge changes in the other that make the joke what it is.

    Nappuccino on
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  • srsizzysrsizzy Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    so...was the point of that movie to be terrible in every way possible? I really hope so. though...even if it was, that's not really...a good thing. it wasn't bad in a funny way, it was just bad. mainly because the cuts were jarringly awful, and the camera work was pretty bad. I'll take for granted that the acting was supposed to be bad.

    I don't know...it seems like the goal would have had to have been to be bad. looks like you got a hold of Video Copilot's "Action Movie Essentials" and someone thought "Okay, let's make a bad action movie, since we can't make a good one." In the end, I don't think much was achieved, since everything (in terms of the actual filming and script) was done in ways that it shouldn't be done.

    by the way, that's a truck...not a van.

    srsizzy on
    BRO LET ME GET REAL WITH YOU AND SAY THAT MY FINGERS ARE PREPPED AND HOT LIKE THE SURFACE OF THE SUN TO BRING RADICAL BEATS SO SMOOTH THE SHIT WILL BE MEDICINAL-GRADE TRIPNASTY MAKING ALL BRAINWAVES ROLL ON THE SURFACE OF A BALLS-FEISTY NEURAL RAINBOW CRACKA-LACKIN' YOUR PERCEPTION OF THE HERE-NOW SPACE-TIME SITUATION THAT ALL OF LIFE BE JAMMED UP IN THROUGH THE UNIVERSAL FLOW BEATS
  • srsizzysrsizzy Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    Oh, god, wait, that was your thesis? I'm on the fence here. Was it supposed to be bad just in terms of "This is goofy," or was it supposed to be like, "Here's some really awkward continuity cuts, some awkward actors, and an awkward script," and it's supposed to be...ironic? Because I'm sorry I was so rude if those mistakes weren't "intentional."

    srsizzy on
    BRO LET ME GET REAL WITH YOU AND SAY THAT MY FINGERS ARE PREPPED AND HOT LIKE THE SURFACE OF THE SUN TO BRING RADICAL BEATS SO SMOOTH THE SHIT WILL BE MEDICINAL-GRADE TRIPNASTY MAKING ALL BRAINWAVES ROLL ON THE SURFACE OF A BALLS-FEISTY NEURAL RAINBOW CRACKA-LACKIN' YOUR PERCEPTION OF THE HERE-NOW SPACE-TIME SITUATION THAT ALL OF LIFE BE JAMMED UP IN THROUGH THE UNIVERSAL FLOW BEATS
  • Agent ColemanAgent Coleman Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    Hey srsizzy,

    So yeah, as far as the film goes, err went, I basically tried to make a comedy that took itself too seriously (that also was an action movie). The editing / camera work was as good as we could do, sorry you didn't like it. Everything else was supposed to be cheesy though, the only "actor" that I had was the main character, and even then he hadn't done any acting before.

    The main reason for making it was that action is probably the hardest genre to make (logistically), so I figured for my thesis I'd attempt to make the hardest movie I could think of. We ended up getting everything shot in 5 days (though 1 of those days was just for the van / truck exploding).

    I feel that attempting a film of this magnitude made my current abilities as a filmmaker better then they would of been if I had just made a simple film.

    I should also state that this was my thesis for a 2 year film course at a Community College in Thunder Bay, Ontario. So yeah, I'm sorry you didn't like it, but thanks for being honest. I hope you like the next video I post (if I do post another one).

    Agent Coleman on
  • srsizzysrsizzy Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    I don't mean to criticize the acting/writing, I think what's most important is dealing with the technical aspects first.

    It wasn't so much about not liking it, there was just a lot of weird continuity edits, mainly when some sort of "action" was taking place, and they were consistent enough that that I thought it was on purpose. A lot of the cuts are really quick and awkward. And the "speed-ramped" camera dollies (when you just turned up the speed in editing) are really afternoon-kids-show. The camera work wasn't so bad, it was mainly the editing. When editing just comes down to what you cut together, I hope you don't mean "as good as we can do" as a time or resources matter; it's just a matter of keeping continuity in mind, and making sure what's happening on screen is clear. There were points when dudes were fighting and I didn't even understand what was happening.

    It's good if it was a learning experience, but if you wanted a good final product then you probably shouldn't have tackled an action movie with so many resources. It didn't seem like it was taking itself "too seriously," it actually comes off as not taking itself seriously. I don't know, you learn no matter what you choose to do. I hope your next film goes well.

    srsizzy on
    BRO LET ME GET REAL WITH YOU AND SAY THAT MY FINGERS ARE PREPPED AND HOT LIKE THE SURFACE OF THE SUN TO BRING RADICAL BEATS SO SMOOTH THE SHIT WILL BE MEDICINAL-GRADE TRIPNASTY MAKING ALL BRAINWAVES ROLL ON THE SURFACE OF A BALLS-FEISTY NEURAL RAINBOW CRACKA-LACKIN' YOUR PERCEPTION OF THE HERE-NOW SPACE-TIME SITUATION THAT ALL OF LIFE BE JAMMED UP IN THROUGH THE UNIVERSAL FLOW BEATS
  • Agent ColemanAgent Coleman Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    Thinking back to when I was working on this (2 years ago already) When I edited it, I remember I had a much slower longer version of it, and then I had a editing meeting with a teacher and he was saying it wasn't action enough, so I had to amp it up, hence the crazy cuts.

    I didn't really mean it in a time or resource matter either, I felt that the best choices were made that I had avaliable to me. When I say it took itself to seriously I refer to the original performances.

    Thanks for hoping my next one goes well, as of right now I'm having scheduling problems. Do you have any work that you've done online?

    Agent Coleman on
  • Agent ColemanAgent Coleman Registered User regular
    edited October 2009
    comic040.jpg

    I tried doing some more work on the actual drawing of the characters this time around. I would of done more colour work but this comic was pretty simple in that sense.

    What would be the best way to work on my expressions? I'm assuming just drawing face after face after face after face?

    Agent Coleman on
  • iglidanteiglidante Registered User
    edited October 2009
    Maybe use some references and try to develop a set of "standards" for your characters. Like this:
    facial-expressions-t8896.jpg

    iglidante on
  • Agent ColemanAgent Coleman Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    Hmm, yeah that'd probably be something handy to do.
    comic041.jpg

    Agent Coleman on
  • Agent ColemanAgent Coleman Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    comic042.jpg

    Agent Coleman on
  • iglidanteiglidante Registered User
    edited November 2009
    Just one thing to note: watch your strip titling and your dialog. When the bubble breaks the frame like that, and all your text is the same size, it looks like he's speaking the title of the strip.

    iglidante on
  • ManonvonSuperockManonvonSuperock Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    I'd find it funnier if the dialog in the second panel was only: "Personally, I'd go with the round ones."

    Anyone's that's seen Jurassic Park would get the joke without the additional explanation. Anyone that hasn't seen it wouldn't care either way. You're overexplaining the gag here.

    ManonvonSuperock on
  • tynictynic PICNIC BADASS Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited November 2009
    The 'your funeral' is something of a telegraph, too.

    tynic on
  • bombardierbombardier Moderator mod
    edited November 2009
    Yeah this one suffers from Buckley syndrome.

    bombardier on
    ?username=bombardactyl&theme=dark
  • tynictynic PICNIC BADASS Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited November 2009
    Come to think of it, it would probably work fine as an SMBC-style one-panel strip. Just the title, the guy asking about the doorknobs, and the Professor looking thoughtful.

    tynic on
  • Agent ColemanAgent Coleman Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    This might just be me being ignorant, but what's Buckley syndrome?

    And as far as the overly long dialogue goes, I was trying to convey a bit almost like the contractor had seen it happen before. But yeah, perhaps it would of worked better without it.

    Agent Coleman on
  • Agent ColemanAgent Coleman Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    *tugs at collar*

    Woops.

    Agent Coleman on
  • LeggraphicsLeggraphics Registered User
    edited November 2009
    I kinda like the hot cakes joke. The style is easy enough to see which is good.

    The movie- The idea is there, it could of turned into a sort of '24' style where the camera is like someone's eyes, not knowing where to focus and where the action is but there are a few main things that make it 'to' amateur.

    The biggest of all is the shaky camera work. I know that there is 'style' used rather allot these days that do incorporate the handycam look BUT it really isn't handycam. They still mostly use steadycam rigs or at the very least have it on their shoulder as the bigger cams weigh more they dont just have that annoying shake, it has more of a purposeful 'wander'. The few sections where you walk with the camera is sooo off putting, such as towards the truck before you change for the in-truck view. You not only walked towards the truck meaning the camera bounced but also sped it up which makes it worse.

    Few tips... For a small camera use it down at your pelvis height as it is where your centre of gravity is. Its important to hold your arms in a relaxed position. for anything above that point use a tripod.. or a steady-cam rig, they are easy to make instructions are all over the net.

    Few other things for a better look might include a cooling filter probably blue or a dark blue and better sound. ohh and dont use the shitty wipe effect, or any edit effect unless you absolutely have to lol

    BTW. your intro was rather good until the gunshot effect.

    Keep it up mate, id stick with the comics

    Leggraphics on
  • Agent ColemanAgent Coleman Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    The biggest of all is the shaky camera work. I know that there is 'style' used rather allot these days that do incorporate the handycam look BUT it really isn't handycam. They still mostly use steadycam rigs or at the very least have it on their shoulder as the bigger cams weigh more they dont just have that annoying shake, it has more of a purposeful 'wander'.

    Yeah, we do it quite the right way, also so you know, we did shoot on DVX 100's that were attached to home made steadycams. I'll have to try what you were saying about filters next time too. Thanks for the info.


    Also new comic.
    comic043.jpg

    Agent Coleman on
  • A-squaredA-squared Registered User
    edited November 2009
    Man! I look at these comics and I think these should be funny but why don't I think so. I believe what you need to work on is facial expressions. good and varied facial expressions will ensure a well executed joke.

    A-squared on
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