Wondercon 2014 Wrap-Up

Hey, MC Peeps! (I’ve inducted you all into a gang.)

This most recent weekend past, April 18-20th, was Wondercon in sunny (read: hot) Anaheim, CA. The local portion of the Making Comics crew (Patrick Yurick, Kevin Cullen, Adam Greenfield, and Devin Larson — me) were there to hang out with Storyforge Productions (Rachel Beck, Shelley Couvillion, and a bunch of cool people to whom I failed to make a proper introduction) and Jason Brubaker, all while promoting comic awareness.

And we were all on a panel. That too.


Making / Creating / Articles

Nondestructive Photoshop Shadows and Effects

Efficiency. As comic creators, we’re all striving for it. With full-time jobs, family, and everything else life throws at us competing for our precious art time, being more efficient means getting more done. My goal with these Photoshop articles is to help you streamline your process to get more work done in the same amount of time – or even less. I began with an article on using Photoshop Actions in your workflow. Today, I want to talk about using some of the more powerful features of a world class application like Photoshop. Specifically, creating shadows and effects nondestructively. But what is nondestructive editing? Let’s have Adobe explain it:

Nondestructive editing allows you to make changes to an image without overwriting the original image data, which remains available in case you want to revert to it. Because nondestructive editing doesn’t remove data from an image, the image quality doesn’t degrade when you make edits.



Daily Mini-Challenge

Are you ready to improve your comic making skills on a daily basis? Do you want to continually work to connect to a group of peers that are working (like you) to create comics? The “Daily Mini-Challenge” now live and ready for you to join in! Join at any time and engage at your leisure. Every morning you will receive a new challenge designed to take 20 minutes or less of your day. Prepare to be creatively charged as you fill your your brain with comic making info!

Sign-up now and you will start receiving challenges the following day (starts Sunday April 27th).

Subscribe to the Daily Mini-Challenge

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Tropes are storytelling devices. Used well, they enrich a story; used badly, they result in the dreaded cliché. This series of articles takes a closer look at some major tropes relevant to comics and the pitfalls they may present.


“Exposition is a literary tool that is used to give information to the audience through dialogue, description, flashback or narrative.” Source:


Theory / Philosophy

Making Comics Gutter Talk Episode 16 – Ted Adams

Nobody puts Ted in a corner. Many have tried, though after listening to this podcast, I have a feeling you’ll struggle to do so yourself. Tag along with Adam and Patrick as they visit CEO Ted Adams and the IDW Publishing offices to discuss a little IDW history, the past and present of the publishing industry, and the Dewey Decimal System. If you’re looking for the comics section, it’s 741.


Making / Creating / Articles

Comic Review Checklist Part 1: The Flow

Hi everyone! For my first articles I’ll be sharing my comic review checklist. It has three parts: everything that relates to the “flow” of the pages, everything that relates to the words on the pages, and then everything else. This is part one! (more…)

Theory / Philosophy

Making Comics Gutter Talk Episode 15 – Jim Zub

The next time you think to yourself, “I am just way too busy,” please consider this podcast you’re about to listen to. How writer, artist, teacher, and literal jack of all trades Jim Zub even found the time to sit down for an hour with us is as mysterious as what the writers were thinking with the last season of LOST. At times it is a bit harrowing listening to Jim describe his day. Then you look at his amazing work, the result of stacking those seemingly endless days of creative output, and end up scooting your chair back in, grabbing a pencil, and sketching out your next idea or writing that last page or chapter.  Join Adam and Mark as they steal an hour from Jim Zub’s time to talk about… well, Jim Zub’s time.



Get A Grasp! Gutter Talk: Scheduling & Setting Goals

Join CEO Patrick Yurick, EIC Devin Larson, and Gutter Talk Host Adam Greenfield as we cover the third week of content available through the “Get A Grasp!” course.


Guest panelists for this week include:
Christina Blanch (SuperMOOC, Damnation of Charlie Wormwood)
Eric Shanower (Oz Series, Age of Bronze)
Jared Cullum (Pea Green Coffee Cup)
Damon Gentry (Sabretooth Swordsman)
Lucy Bellwood (Baggywrinkles, Cartozia Tales)
Jen Vaughn (Fantagraphics, Avery Fatbottom, Cartozia Tales)


Distribution / Digital / Tutorials

Self-Publishing Tips: Offset Printing, Part 2

Continued from part 1, which covered resolution, color space, page size and position.

Number of pages:

While diversification of printing techniques means this is no longer always an issue, it remains an issue to be aware of when using offset printing. I am talking about the fact that the number of pages in a book needs to be a multiple of 16. This is due to the way offset printing, which makes use of large plates, works: