The Growing Pains of Making a Comic Page

Here is the first page of my current one off (or should that be shot?) comic, The Doorway. As promised, here is a breakdown of how I put the page together, from script to final page.

Stage one, the finalised script pages, always a good starting point:

Once I have the script done, the next step is to rough out the page layout (this is where things started to go wrong with this page, more on that in a mo). I always, for whatever reason, sketch the page layouts in a lined note book, don’t know why, always have ever since I was a kid and made up comics then:

Now I have planed the page layout based on the script, next is the art, making sure to leave space for the speech bubbles! (A common trap that is fallen into by artists starting out, I still do from time to time, is underestimating just how much room can be taken up by the dialogue).

Finally, lettering the page, a very skilled art I’m still trying to master:

Now the page is done and I can move onto page two (thirty-four to go).

To finish I’m going to expand my statement I just made about, ‘this is where things started to go wrong…’ Something I did with every single page except page one was carefully estimate the space needed by the dialogue and the speech bubble placement. This is one of the reasons that the comic grew from thirty to thirty-five pages in length, to jam in all the dialogue without it crowding the page! (I love my dialogue). I guess this is a lesion in the seven Ps.

The other trip-up was with the panel flow, it’s a bit ‘jerky’ again victim of deciding as I planned the layout of the comic as I worked on page two that it needed to be spread out a bit more. Looking at it, I’m guessing it should have been a six not four panel page.

We are all our own worst critiques, and considering I’m creating the whole thing, I’m in for some harsh critique. Over all though, I’m very happy with the page, and boy I forgot just how long it take to paint a page of comic art, and something I’m excited about is I know how this page falls in to the context of the rest of the story; so the split hairs I’ve griped about will be lost in all the coolness of the following pages.

More on this comic coming soon, also I’m planning a one off painting about something this month and I might have something else very exciting to share too, hmmmmm, I wonder what that might be…?


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