Posts Tagged: writing

MakingsComics.com Gutter Talk 101: Comic Fuel Episode 5

“This is the real secret of life — to be completely engaged with what you are doing in the here and now. And instead of calling it work, realize it is play.”  – Alan Watts

As we walk out into the world we are entering a story. This story defines us and the way that we interact with our beliefs, actions, society, etc. As much as we are always entering into the story that others have defined for us, we are also given the gift of writing our own story in every action we take. This month I sat down with Rachel Beck, founder of Storyforge Productions, and we discussed the nuances of story telling. We looked at our society and how we are working to rectify our long history with marginalizing females – specifically in the comic industry. We also looked at the basic construction of worlds and characters and how those construction create compelling reasons that keep us reading.

Reflecting on the talk I am reminded that complications are what keep us interested in the world around us. As comic artists we create fiction where our character confront and battle those contradictions. Theoretically that gives us the inspiration to fight our own demons. That’s what the #ComicFuel show is all about right? For us to join together to turn away from just consuming art and to bring us into the battle – the battle to create art.

So get out your pens and papers. Sit down. Join us as Rachel and I provide the fuel you are going to need for the coming battle.

(more…)

Comic Road 2: Scripting Time!

I’m not going to lie. Scripting is my jam. I’m a writing kinda guy, so excuse me if I get a little resource happy here. But there’s so much stuff to learn about scripts that just giving you guys only a couple of resources might break my heart. So we’ll start at square one.

(more…)

MakingsComics.com Gutter Talk 99: Comic Fuel Episode 4

“…it ain’t about how hard ya hit. It’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward.” 

Rocky Balboa’s inspirational speech to his son in the 2006 installment into the Rocky franchise is definitely the inspiration for this show. There’re a lot of projects I work on right. Art, design, and educational experiences I am currently slaving away over. I spend a lot of time, and incur a good deal of mental anguish, trying to figure out what the “right” thing to do is as a day job. When Rocky talks about taking hits, in my context that is all about my own personal demons regarding my design process. My own shadow/devil on my shoulder telling me I’m wasting my time.

Last month, I’ll be honest, I almost considered #ComicFuel a waste of my time. Three episodes in and I was ready to give up.

I almost didn’t finish episode 3. Even during the process of doing it, I didn’t want to finish it. I did finish, barely, and then I swore to myself that I wasn’t going to do another episode the same way again (if I did another episode). So I called Adam and asked him to record a quick episode where we powered through a ton of questions. It turned into a longer episode.

As I sat down with Adam Greenfield this week to record the fourth episode of #ComicFuel I was reminded why I do this. Sure, this episode is WAY too long ( cough-2hoursand14minutes-cough ), but who cares? I got to sit down with my friend and answer some student questions and talk about how to practice art. In my ideal retirement scenario I would spend every day doing this.

I was reminded that MakingComics.com is the purely “good” thing that I have in my life. For me this is the one sacred space in this whole universe where everything we do is just good. We aren’t always active, or on time with our products, and they aren’t always produced with the kind of quality I’d like – but at their core they are good. We’ve made decision after decision to not turn this into a project that will go anywhere (i.e we are staying here for good). It isn’t a startup business – it is a public service. That is what makes it “good”. It hasn’t been tainted by the threats of being economically unviable – because it isn’t.

I thought I was done after my 2 hour session with Adam. Then…

(more…)

MakingComics.com Gutter Talk 97: Comic Fuel Episode 3

There is not a place we can turn where current events are not effecting our every day lives. I feel incredibly honored to unveil the first episode of comic fuel to feature Ulises Fariñas and Lucy Bellwood as cohosts. Ulises and I jump right into the questions and geek out on what is important to think about when inking – both digital and traditional. We then go into great depth discussing “style” and how it is actually an incidental occurrence in your art as opposed to a measured goal. Lucy hops in during question three to talk about how to think about drawing background art in your panels.

Ulises and I cap the entire episode off with a very important discussion regarding how race and equity is reflected in the comic industry. In fact, in writing the show notes for that segment, I was delighted to find several amazing articles that dealt specifically with how the comic industry is connecting to these important topics.

This episode also includes some amazing borrow audio clips from Jason Brubaker, Ven. Robina Courtin, and art educator John Spencer. Such an amazing third episode. Easily the hardest I’ve worked on yet. Hopefully I can keep it up!

Jump times to go to different parts of the podcast:

  • (00:00) Show Opener
  • (00:43) Introduction to Show
  • (10:10) #ComicFuel Break #1: Not A Delicious Chocolate Cake” by Ven. Robina Courtin
  • (12:40) Question 1: Inking
  • (24:40) #ComicFuel Break #2: “Growing A Tree” by Jason Brubaker
  • (28:17) Question 2 & 3 Style
  • (51:46) Patreon Ad
  • (52:12) Questions 4: Backgrounds
  • (54:58) #ComicFuel Break #3: “Can’t Live Without Art” by John Spencer
  • (1:00:00) Show Closing – Race & Equity in the Comics Industry
  • (01:23:00) How can you, yes you, contribute to the comic fuel cause?
  • (01:26:00) Show Outro

Questions answered in this episode

(jump-to specific question times listed below)

  • Josh: What are some good resources to improve your digital inking? I feel like I know the basics, so beginner books aren’t really teaching me anything new. I’m completely self taught, and would love to learn some subtly with my inks.
  • Maya: How do comic artists deal with improvements in their style while making a comic book? Should a comic artist keep a consistent style? If so, how much should one practice style before starting to make comics?
  • Michael, Poland: What are the elements of style of particular artists if I want to use their style in my own work? I usually think of such elements as: the coloring method used (with computer or water colors), shading, …. but what is it that distinguishes the one from the other? There are general groups of artists (e.g. European, Asian, …) who have similar style – how come they can be grouped – what is the key?
  • Jasmine: How often would you focus on comic backgrounds? Are details like that important?

(more…)

MakingComics.com Gutter Talk 96: Comic Fuel Episode 2

Holy MOLY, what a whirlwind of amazingness it has been in the time between the release of episode 1 of Comic Fuel and Episode 2! We have had a thousand people download and listen to the episode and I have enough questions that I have to wait for another four episodes before I can put out another call for questions. Wow.

In this episode, episode 2, we’ll discuss project management, the comic creation process, coloring comics, penciling comics, and hosting comics online. The questions came from places like Ireland, India, Brazil, California, and Indiana. For legit #comicfuel we’ll hear about why we do art from Stephen McCranie, transitioning into fame and what is at the core of what artistry is really about from “How I Met Your Mother” actor Josh Radnor, and we’ll also hear about the art of really listening by famed audio producer Chris Watson.

Questions answered in this episode (jump-to specific question times listed below)

  • How many pages should a comic issue be to be printed?
  • How long would it take to make a comic by yourself; scripting, storyboarding, art and lettering; and self publish it?
  • How do you keep up momentum on making comics?
  • How long does it take for a comic book artist to make a comic book?
  • What is the step-by-step process I should go through to choose colors that will look good?
  • What kind of colors can i use?
  • Am I just not being patient enough with myself, or am I trying to fit too much, too zoomed out, into one panel?
  • What websites are best for starting to post a webcomic?

Another big announcement is that I spent a lot of time this month creating the Comic Fuel Podcast Wiki (http://comicfuel.wikidot.com/) which will serve as a repository for all questions, notes, and links that are mentioned in the show. Check it out. It took me FOREVER to make, but I’m really proud of it.

The show notes for Episode 2 are at: http://comicfuel.wikidot.com/wiki:episode-2

(more…)

Comic Road 1: Starting Your Comic

So you want to make a comic? That’s great! In fact, that’s exactly what a class full of students down at Chula Vista High Tech High wanted to do. And after designing an extensive curriculum, Making Comics Worldwide CEO Patrick Yurick, and incredibly handsome Editor-In-Chief Kevin Cullen, decided to bring all of you burgeoning comic creators into the mixture by giving you the opportunity to follow along with the Graphic Novel Project (GNP) students step by step through this blog! (more…)

Making Comics Gutter Talk Episode 83 – Dean Haspiel

It’s not often we at the Making Comics Gutter Talk podcast get an Emmy Award winning artist on the show. Of course that’s not why we were solely excited to have Dean Haspiel on but we’d be lying if we said it didn’t add to that excitement. In this Gutter Talk episode, Adam picks Dean’s brain to discuss all things art and comics. Well, maybe not all things. There were a few tangents but it was all art related. Sort of.

Early on Adam and Dean discuss the art experience, what it’s like to encounter art in a way you neither expected nor experienced in the past. Sometimes it’s the challenge that makes art an emotional experience and those emotions can range from joy to confusion to sometimes anger. These feelings, however, only confirm the effectiveness of the art the viewer is visually taking in.

Another important topic of discussion was what makes a story unique and universal at the same time. In Dean’s soon-to-be released graphic novel, Beef With Tomato, he exuded the heart and essence of New York City. If you’ve been to New York City, you’ll surely find something familiar in the book. If you haven’t, the book will make you realize even the ugly side of the city can be beautiful. Because Dean is New York City through and through, he’s able to connect the reader to the city with ease, thereby creating that unique and universal tone.

We know this is a longer than usual episode but we’re confident the next almost two hours with Dean Haspiel will be well spent.

(more…)

Making Comics Gutter Talk Episode 81 – Chris Hunt

We here at the Making Comics Gutter Talk podcast are not promoting anarchy. Still, as you’ll hear in today’s podcast with Chris Hunt, maybe those in charge don’t know what they’re doing. This doesn’t mean start a riot but as Chris found out and explained, sometimes the adults get it wrong, like when he was told he’ll never be able to read at an early age, for example. He questioned that assessment and clearly overcame that obstacle, not letting others determine his path and accomplishments in life. In the world of art and comics, this fortitude and resolve will come in handy. In fact, it already has.

In this episode, Adam talks to Chris about overcoming hurdles like a champ, as well as what it’s like to be old school in a new school world. The term Luddite even comes up a few times. Still, one of the more inspiring things you’ll hear in today’s episode is Chris’s drive to pursue a career and life he wants and seemingly will get. After you listen to this episode, we’re pretty sure you’ll be hardpressed to disagree.

And just like jury duty, make it a civic responsibility to go to our iTunes page and give the Gutter Talk podcast a rating and review. We have no authority to fine you or place you in a holding cell for a few days because you didn’t rate or review the podcast. Still, we wouldn’t suggest it.

(more…)