Yep, Calvin, too early to discuss it...but not to early for you to consider it.
I couldn't quantify how much time or even relative time/consideration people would take with compounding elements within a panel--it's just too subjective--so I think sticking to ideas like more time/consideration and less time/consideration is probably a better starting place.
And that aspect will probably carry over to panels.
One thought though...designing how people consider a panel or page will be a similar process: learn the tools, use the tools, examine what the tools did, modify to need.
Glad this one turned out to be easier for you to grasp.
Before I run away for the day, and perhaps the rest of the year, I'd like to point out a few lines from the column, which, I believe, are at the core of too much bad comics writing (and I rarely use the word "bad," so you know I'm serious about it):
Would it surprise you to know that too many creators would write that last example and still believe their story was moving like a bullet train?
Because look at all that “action”!
Johnny Action Jr. is leaping a fence, a Boy Scout’s getting pulverized, and Granny’s waving a rolling pin!
Action! Action! Action!
Except there isn’t any action in comics, and comics isn’t film.
I believe that these comics writers get so caught up in the drama they're writing inside panels that they think that will translate to the finished comic, when that is just not the case.
To shift away from this tendency, we need to concentrate more on the tools we have at our disposal that will achieve our desired results.
Since there is no action in comics, that's out.
But we have many other tools at our disposal that can manipulate the readers' attention in ways that can make comics every bit as exciting to read as an action scene on the silver screen.
I think we'll be continuing on this topic next year.
Happy New Year, everybody!
I'm still working on "tweaking it", but much like Forby's column before this, I'm fairly certain I can adapt these lessons to be used in my classroom. In fact, when I would tell the kids that the lesson came from, to use their phrasing, "One of those comic book guys you talk to," they would get into it more.
Granted, When Forby had his column I was teaching International Baccalaureate students, and now I teach kids with felony charges and/or kids that have been expelled, but are in the district's EARN & RETURN program.
:shrugs: We'll see what happens.
"Living Robert Venditti's Plan B!"
So I just caught up on this columns current "arc" and I am amazed. I have been reading everything I can get my hands on about comic book writing( The Best of Write Now edited by Fingeroth; The DC Comics Guide to Writing Comics by O'neil; Allen Moore's Writing for Comics by Moore; Will Eisners trilogy Graphic Storytelling and Visual Narrative, Comics and Sequential Art, Expressive Anatomy for Comics and Narrative) and these columns have really been making me think about things I have never considered, especially this column. Thanks, and I look forward to learning more from the crew here at PFB.
Glad this is working well for you, DVS. Thanks for the kind words and the exalted comparisons.
As a side note, it's interesting how much less chatter their is when there's so much homework to consider.
I suspect that if I just gave a pop quiz next week, I'd get 2 comments (neither polite) and 27 total views...unless the title happened to be: "Magic Pill For Becoming A Comics Pro Here; it's free and doesn't require work or thinking."
Happy New Year everybody!
I'm shifting gears on Tuesday.
See what I did there? I quoted something that included something inside quotation marks already... Wow.unless the title happened to be: "Magic Pill For Becoming A Comics Pro Here; it's free and doesn't require work or thinking."
Reminds me of a strip I had in my college newspaper for a while. I had one with two trails leading to the opposite sides of the strip, forest in the background. The left trail was packed with people and the right trail looked like it led to a ghost town. In the middle of the panel were two signs pointing to each hypothetical destination. On the left: 'Free fast food.' What was everybody shunning? 'Enlightenment.'
Happy new year all.
I started it off on a good note with some new ideas. Hopefully I'll keep riding this wave for the entire year. I think I'm also going to actually do something I've never done before: Make a resolution. Or at least set some comic bookesque goals within reach. First off: Make a webcomic so I at least have a way to get my name out there. I hope to have 50 strips done within the next six months so I can go in confident I have enough. That way I can take a month off here and there from the webcomic and be confident I'll keep it updated. Woo!
Last edited by drgerb; Friday, January 01, 2010 at 06:39 AM.
Hey! I tried your homework. I appreciate any critiques you have.
Mid-morning, a bad part of town.
Wide shot of a closed convenience store frontage; a couple of weathered, beaten payphone kiosks, receivers hanging like the condemned; store windows and doors barred, thin slices of bright ads for lottery tickets and calling cards behind the bars and cracked glass.
Dave Bowman, the astronaut from 2001, stands in spacesuit near the door, impatiently waiting for the store to open.
Behind Dave Bowman is Rick Deckard, the replicant hunter from Blade Runner, chatting up...
a young woman behind him, naked save for pasties, body glitter, high heels, and a large snake slithering on her body and arms.
Near the tail end of the line is Cinderella, holding a cracked glass slipper in one hand and crying into a bluetooth headset.
Towering over them all is Optimus Prime; not the Michael Bay Movie Optimus Prime, the old school cartoon Optimus Prime...but with a UPS logo on his arm. He's looking at his wrist watch.
1 Dave Bowman: Open the Kwik-E Mart bay door, Hal.
2 Dave Bowman: What do you mean you can't do that? It's nine!
3 Rick Deckard: ...We lived in the mountains for a while, but it didn't end well. I'm in a bachelor loft a few streets over now.
4 Naked Woman: Yeah, I'm putting myself through college.
5 Rick Deckard: You dance anywhere around here?
6 Naked Woman: Yeah, I'm majoring in human-cyborg relations.
7 Cinderella: After the dance we drove to a rave in the valley, and I broke my heel.
8 Cinderella: I'm ****ing tripping balls right now.
9 Optimus Prime: When we vanquished the Decepticons I envisioned a bright future for the Autobots...
10 Optimus Prime: Not doing over-the-road trucking.
Last edited by RonaldMontgomery; Friday, January 01, 2010 at 10:19 PM.
Left to right, it's clear and reads well.
Going to the assignment, how do the shorter versions read? Do we scan them the same way we do here? Do we wallow in one funny gag after another?
Nice work...but don't forget the stuff that led to this.
This was the last version...but each shorter version is just as valid.
It wasn't simply about putting in lots of stuff and making it readable; it was about actively changing how the reader will perceive the panel...in each version.
Do this, and you (and others who actually do this, who actually work to learn this) can do anything.
For those of you who don't do the assignment, but think you'll remember it and be able to apply it...tough luck.
Trust me on this: you won't have learned it.
This, like so much else, is learning by doing and examining what you did.
Welcome to 2010.
Hey, thanks for reading! You're such a hard ass that it gives me hope, doing this assignment right.
I joined PF just for this online seminar. I feel that if I don't go to practice during the week, I'll never play ball on Sunday. And I want to play ball on Sunday. :mad:
You're my Vince Lombardi.