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Thread: TPG: Week 50 - Chris Lewis

  1. CalvinCamp Guest

    TPG: Week 50 - Chris Lewis

    Chris Lewis is up again this week. Let's see what he's brought us this time.


    PAGE ONE (five panels)


    Panel 1. We open on a man in his early 30’s. Tall, short hair, pretty conservative, wearing glasses. He’s wearing a tweed jacket with khaki pants. He’s looking up and past us with a slight, content smile. His nametag reads “Jefferson” hand-written in very precise letters. His full name is Jefferson Johnston.

    You've described the guy, but where is he? Right now he's floating in a void because you haven't described his surroundings. And what is he doing (besides looking up)? Standing? Sitting? Dancing a jig?

    VOICE (OP):
    Do you have another name for me?


    Panel 2. Cut to the announcer. This is our man DJ. He's a young, hip-hop version of Rod Roddy from the Price is Right. He’s in his announcer’s booth reading the name from a list.

    DJ:
    I sure do. How ‘bout…


    Panel 3. Cut to Mitch Sexy in the audience of a game show. He’s a burly man in his late 20’s, early 30’s, whose shoulders are crowding the two small women he’s sitting next to. This is a somewhat tight shot so we don’t see much more than these three. They are snarling at him but he looks like the most surprised guy in the world. His hair is long and he’s got a big goatee, but he looks well groomed. Think of Waingro from the movie Heat.

    DJ (OP): `
    Mitch Sexy, (comma) COME ON DOWN!

    CAP:
    People think I’m a beast.


    Panel 4. We see Mitch running down an aisle coming to join other contestants in front of a stage. Each contestant is standing in front of a podium. There are panels on the front of the podiums in those bright primary 70’s Price is Right colors. Each contestant’s name is written on the panels, and the podium at Mitch’s far right is empty and waiting for Mitch. To the left of his podium is an overweight woman with a nametag that reads Carol. To her left is a man named Kevin. To his left is a woman named Sue. Mitch’s arms are raised as the audience cheers for him. We see Jefferson in the audience near the front. There is also a strange, hunched-over woman in the audience with a hood covering her face.

    I think you're trying to cram an awful lot into one image, there. In the foreground, you've got four podiums, with people standing at three of them. And we're zoomed in close enough on those people to read nametags, which will restrict your background space. Then, in the background, you've got an entire crowd, out of which we're supposed to be able to spot two distinct people. Then, beyond them (because they'll have to be up front to even have a prayer of spotting them), you've got Mitch running down the aisle. I'm glad I don't have to draw that.

    I think you need to break it up. You could have a panel with Mitch running down the aisle with no podiums in the way, so you can get close enough to see him well, and you can plant Jefferson and the hooded woman in the audience close to him (so we can also see them well). Then you could do a second panel where Mitch is closing in on his podium, to get the other contestants in the shot. Along with that, I'd recommend putting DJ's line in the first panel, then putting the Voice's line in the second. Unfortunately, you'll still have the problem of having balloons with two different off-panel sources, but at least they won't be in the same panel.

    Another option (which would be my preference, because it's not padding things out unnecessarily) is to have Panel 4 show only Mitch running down the aisle, Jefferson, and the hooded woman (no podiums or other contestants), with the DJ's line. Skip the, "Here’s Mitch and I tell ya he looks happy about this," line completely (because it's clunky anyway). Then go directly to Panel 5 and show the other contestants there.


    DJ (OP):
    You’re the next contestant on The Price is Right On!

    VOICE (OP):
    Here’s Mitch and I tell ya he looks happy about this.

    CAP:
    They see the long hair and goatee but not my newfound love for memoirs and white wine spritzers on warm summer afternoons.


    Panel 5. Mitch is at his podium now and we can see his excitement and big smile. He is looking up and past us at the stage, and it seems like he’s looking up at heaven. His nametag is written in very brutal chicken scratch lettering and we see the contestants on either side of him.

    VOICE (OP):
    Now, (comma) Mitch…Mitch. You are just beaming!

    CAP:
    I only have one thing to say to those people.

    MITCH:
    Hi, (comma) Bob Broadway.


    PAGE TWO (five panels)


    Panel 1. Now from Mitch’s POV we see Bob Broadway on stage, and of course he’s a Bob Barker look-alike, complete with fake tan and long skinny microphone. Behind Bob is a big, bright, primary-colored curtain across the stage.

    BB:
    “Hi, (comma) Bob Broadway?” Now in all my years on this show, I don’t think I’ve ever heard anyone say that.

    BB:
    I’ve heard “Hi, (comma) Bob,” or “Hello, (comma) Bob,” or the occasional “Nice to meet you, (comma) Mr. Broadway,” but never “Hi, (comma) Bob Broadway.” Isn’t that funny, (comma) audience?

    Is that enough comma notations that you'll remember it next time? I hope so, because I don't want to keep pointing it out every time you do it, and you do it all the time. It apparently didn't stick from my comments on your last script, so let's try it again, with feeling... WHENEVER YOU’RE DIRECTLY ADDRESSING A PERSON (or persons), THE NAME OR TITLE SHOULD BE SEPARATED FROM THE REST OF THE SENTENCE BY A COMMA.

    And I hope BB's dialogue is supposed to be grating and obnoxious, because it really, really is.


    Panel 2. From BB’s POV we see Mitch and the audience behind him. The people all have the same rapt smiles, soaking up all that BB has to offer. Mitch is beaming.

    AUDIENCE:
    Haha!

    I'd call the audience laughter out as a special effect, rather than a balloon. A handful of "Ha" SFXs scattered over the crowd would probably play much better.

    CAP:
    This gracious gathering doesn't see that a new man has appeared inside me. A man on a hell of a streak.


    Panel 3. BB is squatting down near the edge of the stage. He’s got the mike in one hand while pointing to Mitch with the other. Mitch is listening intently.

    BB:
    Now tell me, (comma) Mitch, what has got you so excited today.

    MITCH:
    I’m here, (comma) Bob, (comma) and I’m ready!

    CAP:
    My luck has changed you see.


    Panel 4. CU on Mitch. He’s lost in thought with a smile on his face.

    MITCH:
    I’m gonna win big.

    CAP:
    I see how the show evolves.


    Panel 5. Large panel here as BB waves back with one hand towards the rear of the stage. One hand will always be holding the microphone of course. We see the curtains being pulled to the sides but we can’t see what’s behind them yet.

    BB:
    Well, (comma) Mitch, I sure do want that to be true!

    BB:
    Now let my beauties show you the next item up for bid.


    PAGE THREE (six panels)


    Panel 1. The curtains are now completely pulled back to reveal two hot Price is Right On models on either side of a new kitchen. Their names are Diane and Jan. Diane is a tall blond with straight hair. In her early 30’s she is the oldest of the Beauties. Jan is slightly shorter with straight brown hair almost to her shoulders. She has bangs that are straight across her forehead. Both are wearing sexy, but slightly trashy gowns that could be straight out of the 80’s. There is a nice table with a stove and oven built into it. The stove is fantastic and includes an indoor grill. The chairs, the stove, the models: everything is gorgeous. Behind the set is a lattice backdrop with fake ivy crawling up it. As opposed to the kitchen, this backdrop is very cheesy. The models have big smiles and perfect poses.

    This confuses me. When I picture a kitchen, I picture a room with cabinets and appliances. How is there a backdrop behind a room? Are the wall cabinets attached to the lattice? And the stove is built into a table? Do you mean an island cabinet? Or do you really mean the stove is built into a dining table? And wouldn't a dining set (table & chairs, maybe a sideboard) be different than a kitchen (cabinets & appliances)? I'm having trouble picturing what you're asking for here.


    DJ (OP):
    It’s a new kitchen and grill!

    DJ (OP):
    Entertain friends while relaxing in this fire retardant kitchen from Bendex! And your sausage will be dripping with flavor after a turn on this indoor grill.

    A fire retardant kitchen? Are the cabinets made of stainless steel or something? What does a "fire retardant kitchen" mean to you, and why wasn't it in the description?


    DJ (OP):
    Keep grilling, with DomeDome!


    Panel 2. The next four panels are vertical and the same size, stretching across the page as we show the entire group of contestants. Basically it is one shot, but each panel is another contestant. Mitch is standing tall and proud, while the others look goofy and excited. The bids are shown on each individual’s display.

    The displays that you didn't mention until now.


    BB (OP):
    Doesn’t Diane make meat look good, (comma) Mitch? What’re you going to bid on this lovely item?

    MITCH:
    That is a fine example of modern European ingenuity Bob. Six-hundred sixty-six dollars.

    Panel 3. Now Carol on Mitch’s left. Her bid is $400.

    No. Carol is on Mitch's right, because this panel comes after panel 2, where Mitch appeared. You either have to re-order these panels, or go back and fix your earlier placement of the characters.

    BB (OP):
    [blank balloon]

    CAROL:
    [blank balloon]


    CAP:
    You know the days when one good thing happens after the next and you feel part of...the bigger plan?


    Panel 4. Now Kevin. His bid is $750.

    BB (OP):
    [blank balloon]

    KEVIN:
    [blank balloon]

    Why are these blank balloons? A blank balloon is usually used to indicate hesitation, or emphasize a lack of response. You don't seem to be using them for that, so what are you using them for? If it's just that nothing of interest is being said, then I think you'd be better served by just leaving the balloons off.


    CAP:
    That’s been happening to me continuously for a month and I've fallen into step.

    CAP:
    Relentless history marching me toward a Showcase.


    Panel 5. Now Sue. Her bid is $1.

    SUE:
    [blank balloon]

    BB (OP):
    Actual retail price $700…Mitch Sexy, (comma) you’ve done it!

    For a whole kitchen? What is this, 1950? I doubt if you could buy the fancy stove alone for that amount, much less a whole kitchen. Just a set of high-end kitchen appliances, will cost thousands. Is what you're calling a "kitchen" just a table with a stove set in it? If not, you need to do some research.


    CAP:
    And it all began…


    Panel 6. In a long, thin, horizontal panel we see Mitch’s lips wrapped around a cigarette that extends across the bottom of the page.

    CAP:
    ...with a cigarette.


    PAGE FOUR (six panels)


    Panel 1. Cut to the exterior of a trashy trailer in the midst of a trailer park. There is garbage everywhere and a broken chair next to a water cooler. Weeds grow all around it.

    SFX (from inside trailer):
    BeepBeepBeepBeep.


    Panel 2. Cut to an alarm clock showing 7:00 AM next to a television. We are now in the trailer. The television is on with a serious looking woman in her late 40’s staring back at us from some kind of talk show. There is a caption bar underneath that reads, "Alice Franklin, author of 'Pappy's Sweethearts."

    SFX:
    BeepBeepBeepBeep.

    TV:
    Joining us today...


    Panel 3. Pull back to reveal Mitch asleep on a lazy-boy chair. He’s got a beer in his hand and he looks nothing like the well-groomed man we saw on PRO. His hair is ratty and has crumbs in it. The alarm clock is on a table next to him. There is a plate of half-eaten food on his lap. Mitch is wearing a wife-beater, underwear, and black leather boots.

    SFX:
    BeepBeepBeepBeep.

    TV:
    …bestseller that’s hit the world…


    Panel 4. CU on Mitch’s hand now hovering over the clock.

    TV:
    …about forgiving yourself for your shortcomings…


    Panel 5. Pull back again to show Mitch taking a swig of his beer from the night before. His eyes are still closed. His foot is extended towards the TV, with the toe of the boot just reaching the knob to turn it off. The TV screen is half static and distorted as it shuts off.

    He's extending his foot and using it to turn off the TV that's on a table beside him? What is he, a contortionist? I think you forgot you already placed the TV next to the alarm clock and started picturing it out in front of him (where it probably should be). When you're describing things, you need to think about where they need to be, and remember where you put them. And if you discover you actually needed them somewhere else, you need to go back and move them so they're in the right location to start with.

    MITCH:
    What's with all this fergiveness crap?

    TV:
    …really blossoming into…

    SFX:
    SQUUEP!


    Panel 6. Mitch struggles to sit up while looking down at the plate of food. It looks disgusting and his frown reflects this.

    You can't really show the struggling in a static panel. You can show him sitting. You can show him slouched. You can show him partway up. But you can't show him struggling to sit up.

    MITCH:
    Rather be blamin’ somebody fer that meecrowavable eatins. Need me a stove.

    You just wasted an entire page on some bum waking up and griping about microwave food. Are you trying to make this boring? It hasn't been terribly compelling up to this point either, but this page is sloooooow.

    You could cover this entire scene in three panels. Establishing shot; Mitch slumped in the chair with the TV on, switching off the alarm clock while we get the blather about the book; Mitch switching off the TV and griping while lifting his bottle to swig his breakfast beer; and done. You don't need a close-up of a clock. You don't need a close-up of a hand hovering over a clock. Just get to the point and move on. Comics are short, so you don't want to waste your real estate. Don't draw things out unless there's a reason for it.



    PAGE FIVE (six panels)


    Panel 1. Mitch steps into his messy kitchen. There are dishes and garbage everywhere. His face will show his disgust in panels one through three.

    MITCH:
    Or a dishwasher. Shit.


    Panel 2. He peeks inside a can of instant coffee.

    MITCH:
    Shit.


    Panel 3. He peers into the now open refridgerator. (refrigerator) It’s empty except for some beer and ketchup.

    MITCH:
    Sheeeit. How's there so many dishes when there ain't not a bit o food in the fridge.

    MITCH:
    Where's my paycheck go?


    Panel 4. He is now looking inside an open drawer. There is an open cigarette pack with one cigarette poking out. There is also a small caterpillar next to the pack and what looks to be mostly empty pill tabs. Mitch is shocked to find something in the drawer.

    MITCH:
    Need me a smoke.

    MITCH:
    Huh?


    Panel 5. He extends his pointer finger and thumb towards the cigarette and the caterpillar.

    MITCH:
    I’ll be damned if you ain’t a cute critter.


    Panel 6. CU on his happy face. He’s holding the last cigarette and the caterpillar out in front of him.

    MITCH:
    This just might be my day after all.

    Okay. That's enough of that.

    Reading through to the end, you've got kind of a surreal thing going here. It's not really my kind of thing, but that's okay, I'm sure it's someone's thing. What you need to do is get to it. Right now, I wouldn't have stayed around long enough to find out what the thing was. The lead-in is a little weird, and hints that there may be some bizarre stuff ahead, but it's boring. It's moving too slow. The dialogue is irritating (both BB and Mitch). Slow, boring and irritating is not how you want to start a story. I was ready to put the book back on the shelf well before the end of these first five pages. That's a reaction you want to avoid like the plague.

    Even taken as a whole, it's honestly kind of a slog. The whole thing needs to be condensed, the pacing tightened up a lot. You also need to work on the dialogue. It's possible to be over-the-top and campy/silly without it being grating, but you haven't pulled it off here.

    The other thing that concerns me is that you open on Jefferson, leading the reader to believe he's a significant character, and then don't get to him again until page ten. I'm not sure that's a good idea. And when you do get to him, suddenly the narrative captions switch from Mitch's perspective to Jefferson's, and that's just going to confuse your readers (unless you instruct your letterer to differentiate the captions in some way, and identify who they're coming from in the script). Even then, there's still a chance of confusion.

    There's some potential for something funky here, but you're going need to do some serious cutting and polishing to reach that potential. So get to work

    That's about all I've got for now. Anyone else have any thoughts?



  2. ChrisLewis Guest

    Thanks for the comments Calvin. I'll start at the beginning with some of my own.


    page one, panel 4:

    I agree that that's a lot of information to include in one panel, especially when it comes to the nametags. But here is my question: I want to give the artist as much info as I can in this panel, it being the first time we see the other contestants. I don't really need the names on the nametags to be 100% legible because their names are HUGE on the displays in front of them. If that's the case, do I need to tell the artist to just draw scribbles on the nametags since it's too far away to see? Is giving the information here a demand that the artist draw it with perfect clarity? The audience at the Price is Right that I remember wasn't that large, and the aisle was off to the side of the contestants. I guess a link to a video would provide some more information for the size of the audience, studio seteup, etc. With the right angle, I think the artitst might be able to show at least the approximation of a name on a nametag, even if it's not perfectly clear. So how do I convey that message?

    Ugh, those commas. I just read (and reread) the rule and I have it now. I always want to leave out commas unless I really want a pause in the flow, but here it's just a rule that I have to live with. Even if I don't like it.


    page three, panel 1:

    There are two words here that are horribly misused, and one that is perfect. I used table in the description, but I really needed to say counter. Then I used kitchen in the dialogue, which brings up visions of cabinets and an actual "room." The one perfect word is the one you used. Island. I'm thinking of a kitchen island. This of course is the only way that a backdrop makes sense. thanks for pointing that out. oh yeah, "fire-retardent" just sounds like one of the ridiculous things you'd hear coming from the announcer in that show. I've watched plenty of Price is Right reruns and the words they use to describe the items are just bizarre. "Fire retardent" is meant to be somewhat ludicrous and I didn't necessarily want that to influence the visual look of the kitchen island.


    page three, panel 2:

    Oh God, I just realized I mixed up Jeopardy for the Price is Right when it comes to the names on the displays. Price is Right never had the names on the displays when the contestants arrived. Creative freedom? The displays here are the same "panels" that I described in page one, panel 4. Using the same word would be helpful. Sorry.


    page three, panels 3 and 4:

    This order fits my earlier placement of the characters. Mitch is on the far left of the page (his far right), and the others continue across the page to the right (his left). The blank balloons were supposed to signify that Mitch is lost in his own world here. All is drowned out in this moment except his thoughts (in CAP), until BB comes in with the announcement that he's won. If it doesn't add anything interesting, then I'll take your advice and ditch it.


    page four, panel 5:

    yep, forgot where I put that darn alarm. thanks.


    page four, panel 6:

    yeah, struggling is probably the wrong word. I wanted him to be in the process of getting up, but it needs to look awkward since the plate is on his lap. And you're right about the scene needing some tightening up. When I read through it now, I realize that the panels were extended to make room for the TV dialogue, which isn't interesting until later in the story. i like your advice though. I can just squeeze more of the TV dialogue into the panels and forget about the close ups.

    Well, that's about it for now. Gotta get back to work as you say. Thanks!



  3. CalvinCamp Guest

    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisLewis View Post
    I agree that that's a lot of information to include in one panel, especially when it comes to the nametags. But here is my question: I want to give the artist as much info as I can in this panel, it being the first time we see the other contestants. I don't really need the names on the nametags to be 100% legible because their names are HUGE on the displays in front of them. If that's the case, do I need to tell the artist to just draw scribbles on the nametags since it's too far away to see? Is giving the information here a demand that the artist draw it with perfect clarity? The audience at the Price is Right that I remember wasn't that large, and the aisle was off to the side of the contestants. I guess a link to a video would provide some more information for the size of the audience, studio seteup, etc. With the right angle, I think the artitst might be able to show at least the approximation of a name on a nametag, even if it's not perfectly clear. So how do I convey that message?
    The easiest way to tell the artist is to just tell him. If there's stuff you're giving for future reference that doesn't need to be specifically included in the current panel, that's okay, as long as you make it clear what is critical now and what can be included later. If the aisle needs to be off to one side, just mention that it's off to one side. If it's a small audience, describe it as a small audience, or X-number of people.

    But, for this particular panel (as I noted), I don't think you really need to get all that stuff in a single shot. You could show Mitch running down through, or by, the audience to show him, Jefferson, and the hooded woman. Then worry about the contestants and the nametags in the next (whether that means adding a panel or just adjusting the following panel). The thing you have to remember is that if you pull back farther from the contestants for a wider shot, you're also pulling back farther from the audience, and making Mitch, Jefferson, and the hooded woman even smaller and harder to spot. So why make it more of a challenge (for the artist, and, more importantly, for the reader) than you need to?

    Ugh, those commas. I just read (and reread) the rule and I have it now. I always want to leave out commas unless I really want a pause in the flow, but here it's just a rule that I have to live with. Even if I don't like it.
    Just out of curiosity, why don't you like it? It seems fairly innocuous. I can understand something just rubbing you the wrong way (I dislike the word "whom," myself, because it always sounds pretentious to me - probably because so few people use it) but I never thought a comma would bother anyone. Is it just "one of those things?"

    page three, panel 1:

    There are two words here that are horribly misused, and one that is perfect. I used table in the description, but I really needed to say counter. Then I used kitchen in the dialogue, which brings up visions of cabinets and an actual "room." The one perfect word is the one you used. Island. I'm thinking of a kitchen island. This of course is the only way that a backdrop makes sense. thanks for pointing that out. oh yeah, "fire-retardent" just sounds like one of the ridiculous things you'd hear coming from the announcer in that show. I've watched plenty of Price is Right reruns and the words they use to describe the items are just bizarre. "Fire retardent" is meant to be somewhat ludicrous and I didn't necessarily want that to influence the visual look of the kitchen island.
    Okay. You just need to clarify the kitchen/table issue then. "Fire retardant" is fine as long it's supposed to sound odd. It may make your artist wonder if he missed something, but as long as you have a reason for it, it's fine - heck, maybe the island or counter is stainless steel.


    page three, panel 2:

    Oh God, I just realized I mixed up Jeopardy for the Price is Right when it comes to the names on the displays. Price is Right never had the names on the displays when the contestants arrived. Creative freedom? The displays here are the same "panels" that I described in page one, panel 4. Using the same word would be helpful. Sorry.
    Ah. I thought the names on the podiums were separate from the price displays, and we'd see both the name and the price. Minor confusion (possibly because I don't watch gameshows). Maybe just mention that the prices show up where the names were before? I don't think it matters if you use Jeopardy displays instead of Price is Right displays - it's not like it's really The Price is Right.


    page three, panels 3 and 4:

    This order fits my earlier placement of the characters. Mitch is on the far left of the page (his far right), and the others continue across the page to the right (his left).
    It may match your earlier order, I honestly didn't check. And, now that you point it out, I realize that "Mitch's left" and "to the left of Mitch" are two different things. So you're right that there's no actual error in your description. But reading through the script, while thinking visually about what will be seen on the page, that's easy to miss.

    I recommend keeping all your placements described from the reader's viewpoint to avoid possible confusion, because that's going to be where the artist's head is at. There's no good reason to make him pause and think, "Oh, wait, it's Mitch's left and I'm looking at Mitch, so it's my right." Just stick to Mitch, with Carol to the right of Mitch. It's safer that way.

    The blank balloons were supposed to signify that Mitch is lost in his own world here. All is drowned out in this moment except his thoughts (in CAP), until BB comes in with the announcement that he's won. If it doesn't add anything interesting, then I'll take your advice and ditch it.
    Okay. Now that I know your reasoning, I'm on the fence. I didn't see what you were trying to do, but I don't dislike what you're trying to do. There may be a way to get across your intent better, but I'm not sure what it is (maybe a Peanuts-esque "Wa wha wa $?" Maybe some illegible text? Maybe what you've got. Dunno, it's your comic). It might be worth thinking about before taking my word that it doesn't add anything, because it might (I just didn't get what it was).


    page four, panel 6:

    yeah, struggling is probably the wrong word. I wanted him to be in the process of getting up, but it needs to look awkward since the plate is on his lap.
    Struggling is probably the right word, and it wouldn't hurt to include it. The problem is that struggling is a process not a frozen moment, and (ideally) you want to make it clear where you want him depicted, the frozen moment, within that process. It's not really a huge deal - your artist could figure out something, and you'd probably be okay with it. But, technically, it's a moving panel. Still, as I've said before, there are worse crimes than moving panels. At least the description was clear enough that the artist knows what process he's trying to freeze, and that's a decent start.

    To sum up... it was a nitpicky comment on a minor issue. See what you can do to clarify it, but don't loose sleep over it.

    And you're right about the scene needing some tightening up. When I read through it now, I realize that the panels were extended to make room for the TV dialogue, which isn't interesting until later in the story. i like your advice though. I can just squeeze more of the TV dialogue into the panels and forget about the close ups.
    Good choice, I think. Personally, I like to save close-ups for dramatic moments or to zoom in on something important. Sometimes they're the perfect choice, sometimes not. But make sure it's your choice. I'm just giving advice, and nothing says you have to take it. It's, to a large extent, a matter of taste. If you think things are more effective the way you've shown them, then go with the way you've shown them. I'm just here to make you think about it.

    Thanks!
    You're welcome!



  4. ChrisLewis Guest

    The thing you have to remember is that if you pull back farther from the contestants for a wider shot, you're also pulling back farther from the audience, and making Mitch, Jefferson, and the hooded woman even smaller and harder to spot. So why make it more of a challenge (for the artist, and, more importantly, for the reader) than you need to?
    gotcha.

    Is it just "one of those things?"
    i think i'm just annoyed that i didn't know it. But now it's all good.

    I recommend keeping all your placements described from the reader's viewpoint to avoid possible confusion, because that's going to be where the artist's head is at. There's no good reason to make him pause and think, "Oh, wait, it's Mitch's left and I'm looking at Mitch, so it's my right." Just stick to Mitch, with Carol to the right of Mitch. It's safer that way.
    is that pretty much common knowledge? or something that should be specified first with every artist?



  5. CalvinCamp Guest

    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisLewis View Post
    is that pretty much common knowledge? or something that should be specified first with every artist?
    Probably just personal preference, really. It's not something I've had occasion to think about before it came up here, so I'd be hard-pressed to claim that it's common knowledge. It just seems, to me, like common sense.

    But you did describe it properly, I just unconsciously swapped it to my own "default" when reading it. That's probably more my fault than yours and someone else might or might not have done the same.

    I know when I'm trying to visualize the panel that's being described, that my first inclination is to read "right" as "my right" or "toward the right side of the page" as I would be looking at it (which is why it tripped me up and made me think it was backwards, when I was reading through the script). I'd have to watch myself to make sure I made the translation each time from "the character's right" to "the left of the character" (or vice versa) I don't know if everyone will necessarily think the same way, but it does seem more natural to me to describe things from left to right as you'd be looking at them in the finished comic.

    I'd say consistency and clarity should prevail. Would you normally describe the elements of a panel from left to right as you'd be looking at it? If so, then it's probably best to describe everything that way, rather that switch around.

    So, yeah... summing up, it seems, to me, like a safer approach. That just makes it my opinion. Whether it's something you want to adopt as a universal rule... well, I've presented my case, but you'll have to make the judgment.

    Might not hurt to run the question past some other artists, and see what their response might be.



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Fanboy Buzz is home to Comic Book News, Comic Book Reviews, Comic Book Columns, Comic Book Forums and Comic Book Podcast
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