Comic Book newbie - Any help?
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  1. #1
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    Talking Comic Book newbie - Any help?

    Hello everybody,

    I am new here, and am not totally sure if I'm posting in the correct section of these forums, so please feel free to move the thread if there is a place for it.

    I have finally decided to buckle down and do some drawing. I'm 23, but I stopped drawing around 10 years ago, so any skill that I had then is pretty much gone, therefore I want to teach myself to draw now using the technical side of things. I'm mostly interested in comic book style/character drawing, and have some ideas for comic books that I would love to develop someday, if this take off is going to be at least half successful. I was wondering if anyone would be willing to help me out with the following questions that I've got in mind?

    - Any ONE book you would suggest to read on drawing comic and/or manga style? (I don't know towards which style I will be leaning, as I'm kind of a fan of both; maybe a mixture of the two, actually, if such a thing exist)
    - Any ONE book on drawing in general, and would it be beneficial? I've just picked up "Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain". Seems pretty good, anyone has any opinions on this book?
    - Any ONE book you would advise to read on how to structure the plot of the story for the comic book? (There are different techniques for books, and screenplays, plays, so I'm sure there's a specific way - the best way - for comic books too)
    - One more: I have a few ideas, plot-wise, for the comic book and they are constantly being developed in my mind - characters, story lines, history, style, etc; at this moment I don't really have the skill to put them down on paper, and really doubt that I will have it any time soon. How do YOU write down stories for your comic books, if you ever do? Do you just open WORD, and start typing, as if it would be your diary?

    I have so many questions, but as I am new here I don't feel like spamming this forum. I would very much appreciate a response and any additional advice on how to proceed with this burning desire to "draw a story".

    Thank you!

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  2. #2
    kev ferrara is offline Registered User Level 17 Gladiator: Spartacus' Dimachaeri
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    1: How to draw comics the marvel way
    2: Andrew Loomis: Figure drawing for all its worth
    3: Story, by Robert McKee
    4: Yes, just open word and start typing. Get it down so you don't have to remember it. Even if its just a fragment of an idea. Organize it later.

    At least Icarus tried!


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    1: Understanding Comics by Scott McCloud, Framed Ink by Marcos Mateu-Mestre was also pretty nice!
    2: I would start with fun with a pencil by Andrew Loomis as mentioned above and then move on to his other works such as Successful Drawing and Figure Drawing for All It's Worth. Here's the sticky for the complete "Artist's Reading List" if you are interested -Artist's Reading List-
    About "Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain", I'm really not a fan. It's not the worst book out there but personally I did not find it that helpful.
    3: This is a little more difficult. If you are comfortable with your current writing skills I suggest you seek out books targeted at screenwriters. If you are looking for free advice, http://www.wordplayer.com/columns/welcome.html has some good tutorials. Anyways if I had to pick one book I would recommend "Writing Screenplays That Sell, New Twentieth Anniversary Edition: The Complete Guide to Turning Story Concepts into Movie and Television Deals" by Michael Hauge.
    4: Stop talking and just write. Doesn't matter if it is a WORD document or even in your sketchbook! As long as you have something, anything really, on paper you can always go back and refine it later.

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    Ever heard of Freemind? It's this free web chart program coded in Java.

    It's pretty nifty.

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    If there was one book I would recommend it would be http://www.amazon.com/Perspective-Co.../dp/0823005674 I can not stop hearing great things about this book!

    Also another neat idea if your interested in would be to just go into a bookstore look through some comics and study the composition. Heck you could even do mini thumbnails of the scenes just so you can get more familiar with the set up.

    Good luck and I hoped this helped

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    Quote Originally Posted by DemiPav View Post

    - One more: I have a few ideas, plot-wise, for the comic book and they are constantly being developed in my mind - characters, story lines, history, style, etc; at this moment I don't really have the skill to put them down on paper, and really doubt that I will have it any time soon. How do YOU write down stories for your comic books, if you ever do? Do you just open WORD, and start typing, as if it would be your diary?
    If you have a smart phone the Evernote application works really well here.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DemiPav View Post

    - One more: I have a few ideas, plot-wise, for the comic book and they are constantly being developed in my mind - characters, story lines, history, style, etc; at this moment I don't really have the skill to put them down on paper, and really doubt that I will have it any time soon. How do YOU write down stories for your comic books, if you ever do? Do you just open WORD, and start typing, as if it would be your diary?
    If you have a smart phone the Evernote application works really well here.

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  10. #8
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    Asatira is offline an amateur trying to figure things out Level 9 Gladiator: Hoplomachi
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    I would definitely suggest getting either Understanding Comics or Making Comics, both by Scott McCloud, for understanding how to make comics; he breaks down the story telling elements of comics well, and would be good to read on their own or to read and then see how actual comics use those tools. I also second the suggestion for Framed Ink for storytelling and more information about layout to help that storytelling. Can't really suggest anything for general drawing other than Fun with a Pencil by Loomis, and any number of books already suggested here or in the Artist's Reading List thread. There are books out there for scripting, but I haven't read any so I can't suggest any.

    Software for organizing and writing ideas: I would suggest Scrivener, http://www.literatureandlatte.com/scrivener.php . I like it because you can collect all your notes and references based on projects. It's available for both Mac and Windows systems (I'm familiar with the Mac version).

    "It's all about the triumph of intellect and romance, over brute force and cynicism." Craig Ferguson on Dr. Who
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    Asatira is offline an amateur trying to figure things out Level 9 Gladiator: Hoplomachi
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    I would definitely suggest getting either Understanding Comics or Making Comics, both by Scott McCloud, for understanding how to make comics; he breaks down the story telling elements of comics well, and would be good to read on their own or to read and then see how actual comics use those tools. I also second the suggestion for Framed Ink for storytelling and more information about layout to help that storytelling. Can't really suggest anything for general drawing other than Fun with a Pencil by Loomis, and any number of books already suggested here or in the Artist's Reading List thread. There are books out there for scripting, but I haven't read any so I can't suggest any.

    Software for organizing and writing ideas: I would suggest Scrivener, http://www.literatureandlatte.com/scrivener.php . I like it because you can collect all your notes and references based on projects. It's available for both Mac and Windows systems (I'm familiar with the Mac version).

    "It's all about the triumph of intellect and romance, over brute force and cynicism." Craig Ferguson on Dr. Who
    sketchbook :: my dA gallery :: my art blog :: old sketchbook

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    Here are some comics related podcast which I enjoy:

    Paper Wings Podcast http://www.paperwingspodcast.com/
    Making Comics Podcast http://www.makingcomics.com/category/podcast/

    If you're like me, there's never enough to listen to while working!

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