Shockingly Mediocre webcomic seeks blistering critique

joshuahoodjoshuahood Registered User
edited February 2012 in Artist's Corner
Here's a few strips from my webcomic Huey Kablooey. I've been doing it for a couple of years, never really putting any time into getting it out there, so I've never had any real critique. If you take a few minutes to write one then I preemptively appreciate it.

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And I know about the Calvin and Hobbes thing, but I swear on a stack of Thus Spoke Zarathustra (I'm an atheist) that I didn't know about it before I named the strip... and it is based on a guy named Huey.

I'm not sure, but I think you're doing something cooler than I am now.

http://hueykablooey.com
joshuahood on

Posts

  • earthwormadamearthwormadam ancient crust Registered User regular
    When I saw the thread title, I kind of assumed that it was gonna be much much worse than mediocre, then when I saw the comic I thought, this is much better than mediocre!! Then I read them, and I settled somewhere in between.

    You're characters seem pretty well defined, and you have amazingly clean linework. The writing aint bad, but it seems like areas to improve on would be, more expression in your characters. They're all very static and lifeless. Also the angles of each of the panels are painfully repetitive and definitely suck out any magic that these comics might have going on.

  • Arden CaneloArden Canelo Registered User regular
    The middle one made me lol. I don't see myself reading a slice of life comic like this, but thanks for making me laugh some. You've got a nice drawing style.

  • farbekriegfarbekrieg Registered User regular
    yeah what ewa said

    also something is off with the resolution resulting in more pixelation in your lines than should be there

  • joshuahoodjoshuahood Registered User
    I create them at actual size via Illustrator and save straight to gif. Maybe I should start running it thought Photoshop at a higher rez.

    Good call on the backgrounds. Total timesaver, but I've been thinking it's something of a cheat.

    I'm not sure, but I think you're doing something cooler than I am now.

    http://hueykablooey.com
  • FugitiveFugitive Registered User regular
    edited February 2012
    I had pretty much the exact same experience as EWA. The biggest problem is the overboard copy-pasting. After you've read through the first couple panels in the first comic, it really becomes incredibly uninteresting to go through the rest of the comic, let alone the archive, since the characters are more or less identical strip to strip. It shows a lot of apathy on the part of the artist, and it inspires a shitload of apathy on the part of the reader. Overall, you've got a very "talking heads" comic. Nobody really does anything, there's no body language outside an occasional raised-hand, character placements are basically the same from strip to strip, and you don't even show anything below mid-chest height. It's a dull way to make comics, no matter how interesting the writing is. If I see the same basic pose and face repeated a couple times, my eyes are gonna just slide off the strip and I'll move on to other things.

    It's okay to copy-paste some elements, like repetitive background elements that only serve as a frame for the characters anyway, but do yourself a favor and draw the rest of the stuff out panel to panel. Even if it ends up looking inconsistent and off model, that's more interesting than the cutout puppet show you've got now. And learn to draw in something other than 3/4 view. Nowadays it basically signifies "Penny-Arcade wannabe circa 2002" even if it isn't your intention.

    Fugitive on
  • joshuahoodjoshuahood Registered User
    I'm actually using that 3/4 view as a limiter, my other experience has been in superhero comics where there are no limitations in size or angles.

    http://joshuahood.com/comics/

    I have just gone too far the other way I think. These are good critiques.

    I'm not sure, but I think you're doing something cooler than I am now.

    http://hueykablooey.com
  • FugitiveFugitive Registered User regular
    edited February 2012
    I'd say it's not really useful setting up such a rigid limitation for yourself if you have any intention of pursuing this comic as a long-term pastime. It will only get more tedious for you the longer you do it. Plus as I said before, the market is so super saturated with those types of comics, that it really only serves to tell your audience you don't put much effort into planning out each strip to maximize the impact of the jokes. It's a visual medium, your characters can be doing a lot more to complement the writing. I think the only limiter you really need is the format itself, which is already fairly rigid. Making your characters as interesting and dynamic as possible in those tiny panels is already going to be enough of a challenge.

    Fugitive on
  • NibCromNibCrom Registered User regular
    joshuahood wrote:
    And I know about the Calvin and Hobbes thing, but I swear on a stack of Thus Spoke Zarathustra (I'm an atheist) that I didn't know about it before I named the strip... and it is based on a guy named Huey.

    I would still change the name of the strip.

  • MustangMustang Registered User regular
    When I saw the thread title, I kind of assumed that it was gonna be much much worse than mediocre, then when I saw the comic I thought, this is much better than mediocre!! Then I read them, and I settled somewhere in between.

    You're characters seem pretty well defined, and you have amazingly clean linework. The writing aint bad, but it seems like areas to improve on would be, more expression in your characters. They're all very static and lifeless. Also the angles of each of the panels are painfully repetitive and definitely suck out any magic that these comics might have going on.

    Pretty well much had exactly the same thoughts, also watch you characters line of site. Your blonde guy spends most of his time looking at everyone else's forehead.
    Also and this is more of a personal thing, consider dropping the sunglasses. I've always found the sunglasses fetish an incredibly unlike able trait in comic characters, I never started reading pvp because of it.

  • joshuahoodjoshuahood Registered User
    It's going to hard to change the name. I have really fallen in love with it. It would be like naming a kid Thor and then one day changing it to Brad. I even got a cool logo.

    I'm not sure, but I think you're doing something cooler than I am now.

    http://hueykablooey.com
  • DirtyDirtyVagrantDirtyDirtyVagrant Registered User regular
    The Calvin and Hobbes thing, as I recall, was a children's story entitled "Hamster Huey and the Gooey Kablooie."

    I don't think this is similar enough that you should rename it for that reason.

    But you should rename it for other reasons.

  • JohnTWMJohnTWM Registered User regular
    edited February 2012
    Two of my favorite comics which rely heavily on visuals for their funny are Buttersafe and Antics. Honestly, in Antics the jokes miss half the time but the whole thing ends up hilarious anyway just because of the expressions on the characters and their interaction.

    JohnTWM on
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