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Thread: Week 1: Harry Durnan

  1. Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Post Thanks / Like

    Stick with the Red, Froby. If you use 75% of the colors that Harry played with in his response, my colorblind eyes won't see 'em.

    I had to highlight his post to read that stuff.

    This world is really REALLY no designed for the chromatically challenged.
    "Living Robert Venditti's Plan B!"

    CAT. 5

  2. harryd Guest

    Well, I did a once over yesterday and fixed up some of the errors pointed out by in the editorial review. Here's a corrected version of the first five pages, hopefully I didn't add in too many new errors reworking it. I'll add in some notes about what was changed just so it's clearer:

    Page One (three panels)

    Panel 1. A large and dimly lit audience chamber. An elderly man in dark robes, Xebec, kneels in strained humility before a raised stone platform. Seated on the platform above him, looking down in judgment, are four robed humanoid beings. Each is made up from a different element: a woman made of water with a wry grin, The Icon of Water; a man made up of rocks with a stern expression, The Icon of Earth; a woman made up of air with a bored expression, The Icon of Air; and a man made of fire with an angry expression, The Icon of Fire.

    Fixed the order in the above panel to match the intended seating order.

    1 CAP (Xebec as narrator):
    The Wizard's High Council. Once men and women, transformed long ago through powerful magics into something more.

    Added in clarification of narrative voice.

    2 CAP (Xebec as narrator):
    And despite my status as an Archmage, here I grovel. One of their best begging for secrets like a novice.

    Panel 2. A view of the council with focus on the Icon of Earth & Icon of Air.

    The council has considered your request Archmage Xebec—

    --and it is the decision of this council that your appeal is denied.

    Panel 3. A close up of Xebec, his veneer of humility slipping into anger.

    Left unchanged since it is already drawn. Granted, more details here wouldn't hurt.

    The magics that you have requested are forbidden for a reason.

    6 CAP (Xebec as narrator):
    How dare they condemn me so?

    Dialogue switched to be in the correct order.

    Page Two (Four Panels)
    Panel 1. A view of Icon of Water speaking.

    Already fixed by the artist, but rewritten anyhow to make it more accurate.

    While you may be a brilliant wizard, we feel this is not justification enough to grant you access to them. We feel you are not ready--

    Panel 2. Xebec has risen to his feet in anger before the council.

    2 XEBEC (BURST):
    Not ready?!

    Do not forget to whom you are speaking!

    Panel 3. A door opens in the back of the chamber, light shines brightly outside, but does little to lighten the interior of the chamber. Xebec has managed to resume his look of humility and bows to the council.

    4 XEBEC:
    Forgive me, my lord.

    This hearing is adjourned.

    6 XEBEC:
    Thank you for hearing my plea.

    Fixed up the dialogue a bit... hopefully.

    7 CAP (Xebec as narrator):
    Truly, I expected as much from these arrogant fools.

    Panel 4. Xebec stalks into a bright stone hallway, anger clearly shown on his face. Other men and women in robes are walking along the hall. The crowd is mostly young adults or college aged, students learning magic. A younger man and woman talk while a middle aged man looks at them sternly from across the hall, a few are immersed in studying tomes, and some are just passing through. In the background crowd Pell strides down the hall with Azziz following him weighed down by a stack of papers.

    6 CAP (Xebec as narrator):
    This will not end here. What has been done once can be done again. They will only have themselves to blame for what is to come--

    7 CAP (Xebec as narrator):
    --for what I must do.

    Page Three (three panel)

    Panel 1. Ona a bright sunny day, a young man, Pax, with dusty patches of brown dirt on his clothes leans against a wooden fence staring wistfully at something off panel. There is a wooden bucket resting in the dirt near his feet.

    1 PAX (small):

    Panel 2. A view of a castle courtyard, stone walls are decorated with green banners bearing a stylized brown deer. In the back of the courtyard Pax is leaning against the fence which surrounds the stables. Also in the background an older man, Marcus, draws water from a well. An elderly servant grooms a horse back within the stables. Pax is watching a young well-dressed man, Jonathan, dueling against a gray haired man. They are practicing using swords made from wood strapped together with leather and defending themselves with iron shields. A crowd of well-dressed nobility stands to one side of the duel. In the middle of the crowd is a thin man who is clearly more important than the rest, Lord Hadley. The others give him room, but are watching him if not the duel.

    2 CAP (Plain Narration):
    Castle Ottenbach in the lands of Hadley. A small, but prosperous kingdom. One amongst a sea of equally small human kingdoms that dot the eastern end of the continent.

    Panel 3. Another view of the courtyard. Jonathan takes a mighty swing at his instructor as the crowds applaud. Pax watches in the background as Marcus walks over towards the stables.

    Get him, Sir Jonathan!

    Well struck, Sir Jonathan!

    5 PAX (thought):
    Bah, I could do that better than him. He's going to get his head cracked open at the tournament. If only I could enter...

    Page Four (five panels)

    Restructured the panel sequence so point of view skips less.

    Panel 1. The elder swordsman bows to Jonathan, their practice having ended.

    Well done! Your training is coming along nicely. I'm sure you'll fare well at the tournament.

    Panel 2. Jonathan looks over towards Lord Hadley, as one hand is raised to his forehead to wipe away sweat.

    Reworded the panel to, hopefully, stop it from being a moving panel.

    Of course I will. Isn't that right, Father?

    Panel 3. Lord Hadley stands among the crowd waving off the question. The crowd agrees vigorously, trying to curry favor.

    Yes. I'm sure you'll represent the Hadley line admirably.

    Absolutely, Lord Hadley!

    Of course, Lord Hadley!

    Panel 4. Marcus has come up behind Pax and smacks him upside the back of the head. The elderly servant grooming a horse in the background laughs at the sight, pointing towards Pax.

    6 MARCUS:
    Pax! Quit your daydreaming, and help your old man water the horses.

    Reworded the dialogue a bit.

    Ha, Ha!

    Added some laughter dialogue.

    Panel 5. The elderly servant calls over to Marcus, who grins and has a hand raised waiving to the servant in acknowledgement. Pax rubs the back of his head with one hand while picking up the bucket that has been resting near his feet.

    Good one, Marcus!

    9 PAX:
    I'm coming, I'm coming...

    Reworded the dialogue a bit.

    Page Five (five panels)

    Panel 1. Pax and Marcus draw water from the well. Pax glares over towards Jonathan while he works.

    1 MARCUS:
    Keep sulking like that and you won't even get to see the tournament...

    Panel 2. Pax looks up at Marcus in surprise.

    2 PAX:
    You mean...?

    3 MARCUS:
    That's right! Lord Hadley is going to need a couple servants to go--

    Panel 3. Marcus proudly points his thumb at his chest as he and Pax start back toward the stables.

    4 MARCUS:
    --and your old man managed to get the job. If you behave for the next few days, you can come with me.

    Panel 4. Pax celebrates, slightly spilling the water he's carrying. He is slightly ahead of Marcus as they head back towards the stables.

    Tried to fix up the panel description a bit, to make it clearer.

    5. PAX:
    I can't wait! All the knights and duels!

    Reworded this dialogue a bit, still not sure I'm happy with it, but it seems a like this might be an improvement over the last version.

    Panel 5. Pax, still celebrating and spilling water, heads into the stables with a huge smile on his face.

    Again, tried to fix up the panel description a bit.

    6. MARCUS (op):
    Calm down! You'll still have to help me while we're there!

  3. jshayer Guest

    Hey Harry, good on you for putting your neck out first. Looking forward to my own beheading, I mean critiquing.

    Lots of good stuff here. Thanks Steven.

    The red was distracting, perhaps, the dark red would work better.


  4. Cary Guest

    Quote Originally Posted by harryd View Post

    Ok, a little preface about the script itself. It was my first attempt at doing a comic book script, and the formatting was based off of reading Dark Horse's script guidelines on their submission information. I hadn't read Bolts & Nuts yet... or McCloud's Understanding Comics and Writing Comics. There also was a good bit of side discussion and character design work outside of the script between myself and the artist.
    yeah, and that's kind of a damned if you do damned if you don't type thing. script formats are kinda like anything else, there's a million of em and it all boils down to personal preference and comfort level between you and your artist. what Steve's trying to get across is find a format that's both professional and at least somewhat in keeping with a general consensus and stick with it. you want page breaks, panel headings, page headings indention etc. because it makes reading the thing far easier, and helps your artist as well. if he doesn't have to search high and low for the panel description you just made his job easier and the book better. happy artists make prettier pages than pissed off ones, trust me. good first try tho. keep it up!

  5. harryd Guest

    Now, I'll readily admit I'm a fairly novice writer, but I do want to get better. And, I want to put a serious effort into getting my comic pitched without it going directly onto the slush pile. To that end, I did end up hiring Forby to edit the entire first issue. Well, after a fair number of rewrites, I ended up with what is hopefully a better script. I figured I'd post the final result to give a bit of a before and after perspective. Plus, let's face it, most of us are writing because we want people to read it! So, here is how it ended up:

    Page One (one panel)

    Panel 1. A company of mounted soldiers, wearing white tabards with red trim and emblazoned with the symbol of a burning torch, make their way through the woods at night by torchlight. In the lead is a robed woman, Margaret, who is staring into a slightly glowing red crystal. A burly robed man, Dworn, and another smaller robed man flank her (#3). Leading the soldiers, and slightly behind the three wizards, rides a grimly determined knight, Commander Gunther. Two soldiers behind Gunther are leaning towards one another and whispering. All told there are about thirty soldiers. While they certainly don't all need to be displayed, I would like to give the impression that there is a sizable force behind the lead characters.

    1 CAP:
    The Border Lands. A vast unclaimed wilderness that lies between the five great civilizations of the world.

    2 SOLDIER ONE (whisper):
    How deep in this accursed forest is this wizard hiding?

    3 SOLDIER TWO (whisper):
    No wonder they wanted a large escort. Still--

    Page Two (four panels)

    Panel 1. A close up of Commander Gunther.

    1 SOLDIER TWO (op, whisper):
    --with Commander Gunther himself leading --

    Panel 2. A closer view of the three wizards leading the procession. Margaret's crystal glows brightly as she calls back to the men behind her.

    2 SOLDIER TWO (op, whisper):
    --and a team of wizards--

    We draw near!

    Panel 3. Commander Gunther casts a stern glance towards the whispering soldiers.

    4 SOLDIER TWO (whisper):
    --you'd think we'd be doing more than going through one old man's hut.

    Stay sharp, men.

    Panel 4. The soldiers, aside from Commander Gunther, look about nervously as they follow the three wizards through the dark woods.

    Page Three (four panels)

    Panel 1. A view of Xebec, standing before his tower. He is partially bowed, with his face raised towards the approaching group, or perhaps more accurately towards the reader, and one hand out to his side, gesturing towards his tower as if in welcome. The base and the door of the tower can be seen behind him. The tower is located within a clearing, with the trees behind it a good distance away.

    1 XEBEC:
    Good evening.

    2 XEBEC:
    Ah, I see they sent Margaret, Dworn, and another with whom I'm not acquainted. Quite an escort, too.

    Panel 2. A view of the three wizards. Margaret looks ahead towards Xebec, slight surprise on her face. Dworn gazes up towards the tower, while #3 hides his face within his robes.

    2 DWORN (whisper):
    By the gods!

    Xebec! You knew we were coming?

    Panel 3. A close up of Xebec, with a smug smile on his face.

    4 XEBEC:
    I have my ways. I heard the Council might be sending someone, unannounced, to check upon my research.

    Panel 4. Margaret is standing next to her horse, having dismounted. She looks downward with a shy expression.

    Is... Is it true... What the Council said?

    Page Four (five panels)

    Panel 1. A close up of Xebec, sneering in disdain.

    1 XEBEC:
    Bah, the Council. Toadies to the Elves, prohibiting research into magics they themselves once pioneered.

    Panel 2. A close up of Xebec, speaking angrily.

    2 XEBEC:
    They would have me resign to the grave. Despite their prohibition, I will attempt to break humankind from the shackles of mortality.

    Panel 3. Commander Gunther has moved to the fore, and stands slightly to one side and in front of the now dismounted Dworn and #3. He addresses them, while only slightly turning towards them, but still keeping his eyes on Xebec. Margaret has moved slightly ahead of the group.

    His guilt is clear. Subdue him, and let us return to the Council.

    Panel 4. Xebec with a hand outstretched, as if appealing for them to take his hand.

    4 XEBEC:
    Margaret, you have heard my lectures. The pursuit of magic should know no bounds.

    5 XEBEC:
    Join me, and together we can usher in a golden age for humanity.

    Panel 5. A view of Margaret having moved ahead of the her group, looking forward hopefully. Gunther stands behind her on one side and is casting a dark glare in her direction, while Dworn is on her other side with a surprised expression.

    I... If anyone could do it...

    7 DWORN:
    Margaret! No!
    Page Five (five panels)

    Panel 1. Commander Gunther runs Margaret through from behind, she has moved slightly forward from the previous page before being impaled.

    Traitorous witch!

    Panel 2. Commander Gunther, standing over the fallen Margaret, calls orders back to his group.

    You two, suppress his magics now!

    Panel 3. A view of Xebec, his gaze cast downwards and his face displaying contained anger, with a touch of sadness.

    3 XEBEC:
    Truly a pity...

    4 XEBEC:
    Try to take the wizards alive.

    Panel 4. A view of two surprised soldiers looking up at the trees above them.

    Yes, Master.

    Panel 5. A view of the top of the tower rising out from the forest with the moon slightly behind it. Screams rise out from the forest below.

    Aaaahh! Aaaaaaahh!

    - Harry Durnan
    Last edited by harryd; Sunday, March 01, 2009 at 05:02 AM. Reason: Adding my name, because Forby wants them attached on this forum.

  6. harryd Guest

    Since it's self promotion week on Bolts & Nuts, I figure I'd post a link to the artist's web-site who has been doing the art for my comic posted here. He recently posted up some character sketches from my comic if anyone wants to take a look and post some feedback (ok, the sight isn't in English, but you could post them here!). The link is:

  7. harryd Guest

    Well, since these pages will probably never see the light of day otherwise, I figure I might as well post them up here. The pencils ended up becoming increasingly uneven (in my opinion), and it took the artist about 3 months or so to do 10 pages, I probably won't be continuing this for a while.

    All pencils/inks by Eran Aviani.

    Colors by Lisa Moore (who I thought did a pretty good job).

    Initial Test Lettering by E.T. Dollman (never got to a final draft, just had some early pages done before the project ran into... issues.)

    The cover, actually the last page done. If you notice, the design of the main character is somewhat different that originally drawn (in the initial 3 pages posted earlier). I'm not really thrilled with the redesign.

    *Page one, one of the few pages that got both coloring and lettering. I actually liked how this one came out, though the lettering bubbles seem a bit thick... but again, the lettering was never really finalized.

    *Page Two is sadly the only other page that got both color and test lettering on it. I really do like some of the coloring work here.

    *Page 3... has some issues. The horse is somewhat out of porportion, and the eyes are a little off in the third panel. Here is is with test lettering:

    *.. and colored:

    *Funny side note, this was actually slightly recolored because, it could easily have been:

    *Page Four came out fairly well, here it is with just test lettering:

    *And colored (which again, I think was pretty well done):

    *Page 5, the last one I had posted the script for, and the last one that was colored/lettered. I'm not too thrilled with how the third panel came out.

    *And colored:

    *And here's one random other page from another scene that was partially done. After one touch up, I still don't like how the character on the left came out in the first and last panels:

    Well, a bit of a purge... hopefully I didn't come off as too bitter

    I haven't quit comics quite yet (tying into this weeks Bolts & Nuts column), and I'm trying to do something smaller. Maybe I'll come back to this project later. And, any feedback on the pages is welcome.

  8. StevenForbes Guest

    Never let it be said that Harry Durnan doesn't have a generous soul.

    I'm an art snob. I've said it before, and I know it to be true. I'm pretty snobbish when it comes to the artists I work with. I like quality artists, and I like quality art.

    With that being said, there is a lot here that is just painful to look at.

    This particular artist has trouble drawing faces. They're not only all variations of the same face, but they have little in the way of differing emotions. There are also anatomical issues all over the place.

    Let's talk about the cover and the first page. Anything else would just be picking on the artist.

    The composition of it is okay. I've definitely seen worse. Your eye is immediately drawn to the 'hero', which is good. It would be better if he were drawn properly.

    His right arm, holding the wooden sword, doesn't connect well with the shoulder, and has no elbow. The face is okay, until you look in the face of the villain, and see that it's basically the same. And the expression on stomach is only slightly turned by it. Anyway, his shoulders aren't squared off to us, which is good, because of the whole wooden sword thing, but then his hips are broken. The left leg is collapsing inward at the knee, and then it does a strange thing of going back out to the side with the tremendously overdeveloped calf. And then the artist hides the ankle with a roll of boot, but can't hide the fact that they have trouble drawing feet. Look at them. The feet are stubby compared to the rest of him. And while you're looking at the feet, look also at the right calf, and compare it to the right thigh. Gargantuan, isn't it?

    Look at the women. Except for the fact that one has a gargantuan head, they could be the same person. They could ALL be the same person, because of the little variation in the face.

    Okay, let's go to the first page.

    The first thing I noticed is that the proportions are all off. Look at the horses compared to the men. Why are the men's heads bigger than the horses? Why are the horses so small compared to their riders?

    Let's look at the riders themselves. Basically, all the same face.

    The eye is drawn to the woman. There are things going on with her face that are just totally wrong. I get the fact that she's looking at something and has an eyebrow lifted, but does that mean her entire eye goes on a different plane than the other one? And what is the monk in brown doing on the other side? And what about whispering guys at the back, there. The hand holding the torch? How is that hand just about as big as the guy's head? But the hand is huge compared to the shoulder.

    I'm going to stop. I could literally do this all day long, with every page.

    This artist has a long way to go before even being considered being ready to be professionally published, let alone paid for their work.

    If this were to be submitted to a company, it would not make it through based on the weakness of the art.

    All of that is the bad news. Here's the good news:

    Harry more than tried. He wrote his script, and went out and got himself an artist who can draw better than a 5th grader to try and submit to companies. I've seen "artists" who want to get paid for their work whose art looks like a kindergardener drew it, and the get upset when you call them on it. This artist has a way to go, still, but their road will be a shorter one than many if they keep at it.

    Thanks for sharing the pages, Harry. We appreciate it.

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