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Looking for some tips to speed up comic drawing.

yodalryodalr Registered User new member
edited May 2010 in Artist's Corner
I'm working on my first a little more serious comic/hobby project, but every frame seems to be taking forever, at first I went all color. Then I understood, why most comics are drawn black and white and went on line artsy, but it still takes too long.

I'd like to draw a page within a day, but it comes out more like half a frame in a day... I like realistic style, so I wouldn't want to cut from quality to get quantity(a little paradox... yeah :P)

I'm using Poser for pose and face reference and Photoshop + wacom for drawing.

Oh and it is for a flash game me and my friend are working on. Here's what I got so far. 7.5 pages (in total I'm going to need 20 pages).

So I'd really appreciate if someone with more experience, would comment on my frames and give some advice how to speed the process.

Page1: http://www.lrstudio.eu/LJIS17/slokoto_story_Page_1.1_2.6_resized.png
Page2: http://www.lrstudio.eu/LJIS17/slokoto_story_Page_1.2_4.8_resized.png
Page3: http://www.lrstudio.eu/LJIS17/slokoto_story_Page_1.3_1.4.1_resized.png
Page4: http://www.lrstudio.eu/LJIS17/slokoto_story_Page_1.4_0.8.6_resized.png
Page5: http://www.lrstudio.eu/LJIS17/slokoto_story_Page_1.5_1.0.4.png
Page6: http://www.lrstudio.eu/LJIS17/slokoto_story_Page_2.1_0.7.3.png
Page7: http://www.lrstudio.eu/LJIS17/slokoto_story_Page_2.2_0.4.3.png

When I look at some other comics/manga and the speed they are produced by 1-2 man teams it makes me wonder if maybe I'm just a slow drawer... or not cut out for it.

yodalr on

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    BelruelBelruel NARUTO FUCKS Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    I am really not liking the sloppy scribble hatching on the second to last page. Something about that space museum reads 'tinker toy' with me. maybe the bright saturated colors on it?

    Also, I am not sure how to go about fixing this, but I think your bubbles are placed oddly and don't seem to mesh well with the page layout. And I don't like the thoughts being represented by cloud speaking bubbles, it looks very kiddy, maybe try inner monologue boxes suspended in the page.

    Also, the writing needs work, and definitely needs editing. I spotted several typos on page 2 just from skimming the text.

    as for speeding up the process, there's no real shortcut that I know of

    Belruel on
    vmn6rftb232b.png
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    FletcherFletcher Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    i'm not sure how to say it without sounding accusatory, but are you just drawing right over the top of the poser face?

    i only say this because his face seems to be WAY more crisp and better-constructed than other elements of the comic

    if so, i'd recommend you work on using poser as more of a reference. instead of just drawing over the top of images from it

    and even in the drawings of the airlock, it looks like you've laid down perfect circles with a circle tool, then drawn over the top of them with scribbled lines to try and make it look like you drew them

    my main recommendation would be to focus more on your drawing skills as a whole than on the comic in particular. If you draw things by yourself more often, without relying on crutches (line/circle tools, 3d character models etc.), then you'll gain WAY more of an understanding of their construction

    and if you understand how things are constructed, and how to lay down the appropriate lines with confidence, then you'll end up drawing them faster (and better)

    Fletcher on
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    BelruelBelruel NARUTO FUCKS Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    yeah I was thinking that it was an overpaint too fletch, but I didn't want to be the one to ask haha

    Belruel on
    vmn6rftb232b.png
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    Guy BellGuy Bell Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    I'm biased because I really hate the program. If you ever looked at the Renderosity site you have to suffer thru page after page of creepy looking sex dolls that people buy and then pose. I would strongly suggest that you use photo refs or just carry a sketchbook with you at all times. Poser is just going to teach you bad anatomy skills that you'll spend time having to forget. I keep a cheap digital camera in my car and I get a lot of reference photos that way. Also, as a general rule most comic artists won't stack panels on the left side of the page.

    Guy Bell on
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    yodalryodalr Registered User new member
    edited May 2010
    Tnx for all the replies. Few question though.

    1. Belruel can you please point out the typos, my native language isn't English and I use speller to check mistakes, I guess it can't catch'em all :P

    2. Fletcher, hmm I will try to draw more myself from now on, but isn't using circle and line tool essential for clean background? I mean, it's like using ruler's with real pencil-paper drawing. Drawing a perfect circle with hand would take me lot of erasing and redrawing... (Also in the end the page size is going to be 50% from current size, so the shaky boarders will be eased out)

    3. Guy Bell, I'm sure that using real people is better, but it would take ages to find the exact poses I need + it's hard to draw a realistic face from head for me. Also many books suggest to use Poser for reference.

    yodalr on
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    CristovalCristoval Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    The use of Poser for reference is fine, but you got to add your own personal flair and understanding of anatomy on top of that. Simply tracing over a screen cap just gives your characters the same dead eyed expressions as the models you are referencing. Especially in the mouths. It has that weird sort of Gary's Mod horror to it.

    Try using more dynamic angles as well, as opposed to the "straight on" look. Everything just seems so clinical and unexciting.

    Like people before me have said, if you truly want to speed up your drawing, simply improve and hone your personal drawing skills. Setting up a rig in Poser and tracing over top of that seems like something that would eat up a helluva lot of time. :)

    Cristoval on
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    JLM-AWPJLM-AWP Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    Cristoval wrote: »
    The use of Poser for reference is fine, but you got to add your own personal flair and understanding of anatomy on top of that. Simply tracing over a screen cap just gives your characters the same dead eyed expressions as the models you are referencing. Especially in the mouths. It has that weird sort of Gary's Mod horror to it.

    I couldn't agree more. Personally, I find those posers to be quite frightening, and I just can't get into anything that has them in it. It's like it's sort of coming across as a parody of itself in a way. I can never tell if it's intended to be that way, or if the artist doesn't know how creepy they look. Drawing them from scratch would be a monstrous improvement.

    JLM-AWP on
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    earthwormadamearthwormadam ancient crust Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    Perfect circles, so overrated.

    earthwormadam on
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    yodalryodalr Registered User new member
    edited May 2010
    Perfect circles, so overrated.


    Maybe, but how do I achieve realistic look otherwise? Many manga artists use 3D to render their whole background, and it looks great(Gantz).

    yodalr on
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    earthwormadamearthwormadam ancient crust Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    You're too concerned with achieving realism. You just don't have the fundamental skill to pull it off. (I don't either)

    I think what you've basically done here, is put a whole shitload of well intentioned horses before a poorly constructed and structurally unsound carriage. There is only one way in which that can end.

    It can be hard to scrap something that you've obviously pored a lot of effort in, but you have a lot of learning to do before you can attempt a project such as this. There are a host of problems. Really big and glaring problems.

    Everything is incredibly stiff and generic. The action is completely static. The layout is boring, and the storyboarding questionable. It has a really professional looking gloss, but some things cannot just get a nice coat of paint and be a great finished product.

    My advice, is keep drawing a lot, (with a pencil), and try to learn about how to comic. That Scott McCloud book is good, and cheap. You need to come up with some really simple characters and environments, at least at first to get a good understanding of how comics work.

    earthwormadam on
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    BelruelBelruel NARUTO FUCKS Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    yodalr wrote: »
    Tnx for all the replies. Few question though.

    1. Belruel can you please point out the typos, my native language isn't English and I use speller to check mistakes, I guess it can't catch'em all :P

    2. Fletcher, hmm I will try to draw more myself from now on, but isn't using circle and line tool essential for clean background? I mean, it's like using ruler's with real pencil-paper drawing. Drawing a perfect circle with hand would take me lot of erasing and redrawing... (Also in the end the page size is going to be 50% from current size, so the shaky boarders will be eased out)

    3. Guy Bell, I'm sure that using real people is better, but it would take ages to find the exact poses I need + it's hard to draw a realistic face from head for me. Also many books suggest to use Poser for reference.

    here's a bit, though if you're going to be doing this in english, I'd recommend finding an english editor to help your pacing, phrasing and spelling.
    wrote:
    Captain's Log. Year 3028. 31. March. Time 09:00. 42 days since the incident. Oxygen reserves at 2%. I decreased the air flow to the cockpit four days ago. The lack of oxygen is starting to show effects; my organism (?organism is this the word you meant to use?) is starting to give up on me.

    I just changed a few basic things, reserves was misspelled, and those last few sentences are phrased really awkwardly. Also, organism?

    If you are the one doing the writing for this, I would recommend maybe going into the writer's block with your script for some help as well.

    Belruel on
    vmn6rftb232b.png
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    tutankhamuntutankhamun Registered User regular
    edited May 2010
    Totally agree with Guy Bell. Paper and pencil is still the best and quickest way to produce comics and illustrations. I don't even use ink, just scan my pencil drawings and tweak them using several bits of software.

    I think your black and white stuff is much better than the full colour images.

    tutankhamun on
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