Posted Dec 5, 2010 in Arts | 0 Comments

The Comics Pimp – Creating Comics

About two years ago, I decided to pursue a childhood passion and attempt to draw. As soon as I put pen to paper, I realized just how much work is involved in creating comics.

Fleshing out the idea was something I felt confident about. Still, panic struck me when I realized I was nowhere near ready to draw a comic; that is, telling a sequential story with images that reads clearly, and looks pretty. It’s one thing to draw a picture; it’s another to tell a story with pictures.

I began drawing religiously, first on my coffee table, then after a great Craig’s List find, at my drafting table. I started slowly, drawing a few times a week, until I realized that wasn’t enough. I now draw virtually every day, 4-8 hours each time.

Practice is extremely important, but you also have to understand the mechanics of comics. I can’t recommend enough a pair of books by Scott McCloud, Understanding Comics, and Making Comics. Both books will teach you how comics can engage the mind, and why comics are one of the greatest, and oldest human inventions. McCloud is a genius at dissecting the art form. For more information, check out ScottMccloud.com

There are also a slew of books out there that claim to teach how to draw comics. Some are definitely better than others. Unless you’re good enough already, the first thing you’ll need is a book on human anatomy, which you can find at a used books store. You can practice from these books, or even better, go to a live drawing class. If you can’t afford a class, draw whatever and whoever will pose for you.

One of the classics on the subject is How to Draw Comics the Marvel Way, by the legendary John Buscema, the Leonardo da Vinci of comics. The book covers the particulars of creating not just any comic, but superhero comics. Check out this wonderfully dated, yet fun video of Stan Lee and John Buscema.

Lastly, the magazine Draw! is a great resource. It features in-depth interviews with professionals who discuss how they break down their work, from rough sketches to final inks. Have fun and draw.

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