[Comic 188] 500 Year Prologue

No GravatarThese brief prologues will go in the beginning of the graphic novel volume one, but I don’t think it matters that it appears on page 188 online, as long as it’s somewhere. This comic marks the first of my attempts of using new techniques of using tight pencils and no inks. Not inking saved a huge amount of time, but my coloring still needs refining. The third panel was the one I had the hardest time with, taking a bit less than two hours to do. I wanted this big treasure room with gleaming hordes of gold, but it only came out so-so. Oh, well. It works. I’m way too big a perfectionist.

This page took less than eight hours from start to finish, although part of that time was spent rendering the sky while I took my mom’s messed up Vista PC to the GeekSquad (don’t even want to go into that.) So if I had to guess, it was maybe six or seven hours to color. That’s still a bit long, but had I done this the old way with 3d you’d be waiting until next week (at least.) I think with practice and refining I can get the coloring down to four or five hours, maybe less. That would be awesome. My goal is to get ahead and have a buffer of comics, and then start posting three pages a week, M-W-F. Then they won’t be so late. The old method was very time-consuming, and yet most the evidence I’ve seen suggests that fancy art isn’t what sells a comic. Just look how well Megatokyo sells (that’s not a knock against him, I like it, but it’s just pencil.) I know the 3d did nothing to improve sales on Wowio. I think what really matters is good writing and story-telling. So that’s what I’d rather focus on. Hopefully I can start improving that and keep the story rolling.

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Discussion (18) ¬

  1. SEA

    Trust me, this is NOT so-so, it already looks great.
    Heck, less detail and i’ll still have the same opinion. =)

    :???: …no more comments in mind.

  2. Kriz

    Spelling quibbles: not “who’s mighty fleet horded” but “whose mighty fleet hoarded.” Also, I think you meant “bend on finding,” not “bent of finding.”

    I agree about not needing say fancy art – I’ve looked at some really pretty comics and never gone back to them because the story was completely blah (or just didn’t grab me, or whatever). In fact, I can still be prompted to grumble about “Girl Genius” going to color – I *like* well-drawn b&w comics! As long as they’ve got a good story.

    Though the 3D *does* look cool.


    Your Volunteer Proofreader

  3. Kriz

    Er, “bent on finding,” that is. :roll:

  4. Outlandish

    Thanks for catching those! I’ve just fixed them. :grin: Funny how I can stare at it for days and just not see it. I’m glad you both liked the look of it. I’ve bought some comics with pretty art, to use for references since the art was so nice, yet never cared to actually read them. Story never grabbed me. But I’m an artist so I’m drawn to imitate good art. So they helped me as an artist, but failed me as a reader.

    I like well drawn black and white comics too, although I do have fun sometimes painting the color. This page was harder than usual since it’s actually three detailed establishing shots, more painting than usual. Next one will hopefully be easier.

  5. Anemone

    Yay! I like it.


  6. Outlandish

    Cool! Thanks. :mrgreen:

  7. John

    Love the new pencil drawings. They make it look less polished and more like the gritty science fiction movie in my head when i read a good book.

    cheers to the new comics!!!

  8. Outlandish

    Thanks! I’m glad everyone seems to like the new art. That’s great.

  9. Ashley

    The fancy 3d stuff was really well done, but didn’t fit this particular comic’s feeling as well as this pencilwork is. As standalone pictures, they’d probably do pretty well, but as John mentioned, they were too “shiny” for this setting. (kinda like the newer SW movies just not feeling right, because they were too clean) Sometimes having really good graphics actually detracts from an otherwise great story, but if you take them separately, both the graphics and the story are nifty.

    Tho I must admit that I’ve only found one SF webcomic that managed to use 3d while positively, and where it actually made it better. Of course, that one is also attempting to make sure it has a cohesive universe behind it (meaning science, which isn’t as important in a Space Opera) and was able to make valid reason for the 3d. Tho with a ~1.5 year hiatus to make ship models, obviously some things are suffering. :roll:

  10. WolfCry

    In a graphic novel/comic art is still important, it helps convey characters feelings, all the action, environment, you can however simplify things to make pages easier to churn out (eg,cartoons). Which has already been done with this comic. I like the pencil look,it’s softer, could be used to make it grittier (if desired), but I also enjoy the ship models and other 3D work. The shiny and gritty parts give a nice contrast, all gritty just makes it dull.

    Kriz, GG still updates two/ three times a week, how does it suffer from the scourge that is color to you? Color made the wonderful detail of the comic pop more, and the wacky machines that much more fascinating.

    Ashley, I’m guessing you’re referring to “Outsider” ( http://well-of-souls.com/outsider/ ) it would help if you said which comic, might get people to go and read it, hint hint. Anyway, yes, he spent time delaying the comic due to making the bridge model (among other things), however he has said that he won’t stop the comic anymore for modeling things. He’ll still do the 3D work where appropriate, but when it’s not essential he’ll just draw it in. The idea was to save time in the long run (which it will). He does have a top notch backing (story and character wise) to his comic, which makes it not only pleasing to the eye but an interesting read.

    Anyway, love the pencil, keep the pages coming.

  11. Ashley

    Yeah, Outsider was the one I was referring to. Tho part of the reference was that the backing story actually makes it so that the “clean” and “shiny” 3d stuff fits better than gritty dark stuff would in the places he’s using it. It’s not just a matter of doing a good job with the 3d, or with the story, but of making the two fit together properly.

    But I will point out that the speed these pages are produced at, and the quality they have, are very good. And I especially am impressed with the skill demonstrated in the drawings of “tech” and architectural stuff. Space Opera may follow different rules than Hard SF, which make it easier to fudge things, but it is harder to depict consistently, since there isn’t a solid background upon which to fall back.

  12. Minor Key

    “History became myth, myth became… mythical, and some things that should have not been forgotten were lost”

    Sounds a whole lot like the opening to the Fellowship of the Ring to me.

    Anyway I love the new style, seems more… comic-y. And I like that though you’ve started out as manga, you’re slowly developing a more unique style of your own. This is something I totally support- finding original styles. I think, personally, anime is a bit overused especially in the webcomic world.

    I love this new style.

  13. Outlandish

    “Sounds a whole lot like the opening to the Fellowship of the Ring to me.”

    Yup, that was kind of the point. It’s was a bit of a spoof. I wondered if anyone would notice. It’s very cool everyone likes the new style so much. I’ve just finished the next page. I’m not totally happy with it, but it certainly took much less time and still looks pretty decent. And you’re right. Manga does get overused. There’s still a lot of things I like about manga, but I don’t like it when artists just mimic the look. I do still like the chibis, though. :smile:

  14. Ashley

    Yeah, I also noticed. Didn’t think to comment on it, since it seemed so obvious. Tho I guess I should have, considering how rare it is to find others who understand what/why I find humorous. (irony, especially of an intellectual bent, but excluding sarcasm which I normally detest) The way the reference was included fit perfectly… And the retort was even more perfect for this use.

  15. TheDeepDark

    You detest sarcasm? *gulp* I may have to be really careful what I post here than…

    I do like the artwork, by the way. :mrgreen:

  16. Erulisse

    Don’t mean to be rude, but don’t you mean “whose” in the first sentence of that narrarative box down near the bottom of panel one? :smile:

  17. Outlandish

    Oops, thought I had uploaded the fixed version, but I forgot. Thanks for catching that. :grin:

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