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Hey, everyone! I know that a lot of you guys love to make comics and such, whether on or off of DC. This made me think that it may be fun to share how I like to make comics. This article may seem a bit pointless to some of you, but as I haven't written an actual page in such a long time (and not to mention I'm extremely bored at the moment), this seemed like a good idea. Unfortunately, I won't be adding any pictures into this since I'd have to take photos and upload them, which I really don't feel like doing. Anyway, I hope this is helpful in some sense :)

Character Creation

This step is always really fun. This is where you can really get creative. It's also probably one of the most important. I'll just put it in steps, since that's easier to describe in.

  1. Come up with which characters you'll need, for instance: A main character, three best friends for him/her, a villain plotting to destroy the world, a frenemy, etc.
  2. Decide on the personalities for each of those characters. Depending on your story idea, these will differ greatly. You can also choose the ages of them at this stage.
  3. Once you have the personalities, sketch out the character designs based on that. In reading, it's perfectly okay to judge by first sight, and makes it a bit easier on the reader. For instance, if one of your characters is antisocial, MAKE them look antisocial. If they're evil, MAKE them look evil. This will give all your characters' appearances great diversity.
  4. Once all the planning for them is through, all you need are names. Names can also reflect your character's personality.

Prewriting

Yes, I know that this is a stage that mostly all of us hate on school essays and such. However, if you're planning on writing a comic where events don't pass too quickly or that doesn't jump around constantly, I can't emphasize how important this is. You may want to simply write down some basic ideas to add onto as you go. You don't really have to go into depth, either. However, if you really feel that this is unnecessary, you can skip the brainstorming and just go straight to the prewriting. This can be carried through any way that you'd like. I usually like to write it out more as a script, so in a sense it's more like a rough draft. This will include the dialouge of the characters, the "narrator's" lines, and the actions of the characters as well. Plus, if you decide to re-read this and find things you want to change, you don't have to entirely redo part of the story (which is a pain). All you have to do is revise what you wrote.

The Rough Draft

A lot of people may like to skip this step and go staight to the finished product, but it's always good to consider. Basically, in this step you sketch out your story on some scrap/printer paper, nothing fancy. Your art style should be much more simple than in your final copy. This stage is mainly to lay out the panels, as well as your characters within the panels. This also helps with speech bubble placement. Pretty much, it's all about placement.

The Final Copy

If you've done the previous steps, this step becomes much easier. You already know what you're doing, and all you have to do now is redraw your draft, but much more neatly and nicer looking. However, the style should be something that you can easily execute from one panel to the other. Something that isn't too simple, while not too complex. If you find that you couldn't draw the same style in each panel while keeping the characters looking next to exactly the same, then it's best if you choose something easier. If you want to skip straight to this step, it works best in shorter comics that are a few pages or less.

More About Art Styles

Style difference1

Yes, I know I've already gone over a bit about art style in the last section, but in comics and such it can be a very important factor. If you want to make a more fun and lighthearted comic, you may be best off with a style that fits the bill, which would be considerably more cartoony and wouldn't take itself as seriously (shown to the right). It can also go the other way around. If your comic is much more serious, and, I guess deep (?), then the style should 

reflect that.


Style difference2

I also know that many of you like to draw Powerpuff Girls and such, so I decided to add them in as well. I've noticed that around DC people have been drawing them, but haven't really been staying within (I guess) the criteria of "cute styles." Sure, they're cute and all, but the outfits suggest otherwise. They look more like they'd fit within a different style, as well with teenaged characters. Another thing to note about this style is that it doesn't work well while trying to portray people above the age of 8 or 9, and can become a bit confusing. If you dress them like a teenager, they won't look like a teenager, but like a little girl dressed in teenager clothing. This can make the style very difficult to use. If you want to use this, I suggest to make it a funny, adorable story rather than a highschool drama or something. Also, your characters will fit within the style better if they retain their cuteness in their clothing as well. Normally (for me), dresses, flats, and short haircuts seem to look nicest. However, it's all up to you :)

~Bo Bo Joe

P.S, if anyone has any other tips they'd like to add or sees a grammar mistake, they're welcome to edit this page.

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