Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Technique Files: Creating a comic/webcomic

I'm deep into personalized pet portrait work right now. That means that I can’t share my current works here until after they are completed for my clients. But, in the interest of talking about something artistic for the next little while, I’ve decided to talk about webcomics. Specifically what I’ve learned from doing my own webcomic, Privateer Princess.

The Privateer Princess webcomic logo

Part 1: Back story
Privateer Princess went live on the web in the Fall of 2007. It is a *hybrid-shojo style manga done mainly in black and white with screen tone but with color chapter covers and other spot illustrations. It was hand-drawn but inked, toned, and lettered digitally in a program called ComicsWorks.

Currently Privateer Princess has 84 comic pages posted along with many other pages relating to the characters and the world. For a webcomic, it was slow, posting only on Fridays. After a series of family tragedies in 2009, it stalled out completely in the Fall of that year. It was written and produced by my husband and myself and although I hope we can get back to it, I’m not sure we will. In many ways that would be a great shame, but, as some artistic projects are never brought to completion, I choose to use Privateer Princess as a teaching example for others wishing to create their own comic/webcomic. If my knowledge (and mistakes) can help someone else get started in comics all the better!

*I use the term “hybrid-shojo” manga rather sarcastically. Matt and I had trouble agreeing about how “shojo” the comic should be. The end result was not quite shojo (a Japanese girl’s comic – more relationship-based) and not quite shonen (a Japanese boy’s comic – more action-based)…unfortunately.

Tomorrow: Part 2: Building a world

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