Comics Creators

Collaboration Thread


Are there any artists on this thread looking to draw a short 5 page script? I just finished up a story that looks at a down on his luck homicide detective set in the future.


Hello all! I am a writer with a ton of material. What I don’t have is artistic talent and a budget. Awesome sales pitch, I know. I’m looking for an artist willing to take a chance. I encourage everyone to take a look at some of my samples.
If you like my work and are interested in discussing a potential collaboration, don’t hesitate to contact me!


Very cool ideas.

But why aren’t artists joining in?

If any artist or aspiring artist is reading this, please post your samples at least. And by samples I mean sequential art. Am pretty sure if any writer is serious about it and want you to dedicate your time for their project they will include some remuneration as well.
Please don’t hesitate to post your artwork and your availability.


Cynical characters are usually boring. It is always the same guy who eats the leaves of the potato plant and makes jugements, doesn’t he or she?


I agree 100% and it can certainly be the case. Especially if the character is taken too seriously. And would be a definite pitfall to watch out for if this ever moves beyond this stage. (Even if it did I think the character at best is good for a handful of stories. No 300 issue epics in his future)

In my head the character is kind of a bull in a china shop that upsets the otherwise tried and true balance found between the would be world conquering sorcerers and their erstwhile occult defenders.

The high concept tag line would be something like: “What if Ben Grimm became John Constantine?”


I mentioned here or hereabouts that over many years (gulp! over a decade) on internet boards that writer pleas for artists rarely get any replies or success, it may even be never, I can’t recall one. :smile:

A dozen post they have a great story and want an artist and nothing happens.

It really has to take on a bolder approach. We had the thread here with hundreds of artists (and many post their stuff in their own threads). Millarworld Annual - Artist Submission Guidelines!!

We have direct messages and the @ function to mention them and trigger notifications you want to engage. In an ideal world we pitch a story and the artists come flocking but it’s the creative equivalent of standing to the side of the dancefloor in a club in your best outfit and waiting for a girl to ask you out.


To add to that look at some of the advice posted at the start. Writers need to sell the artist - they need a vision not only of the story but what you’re going to do with it. Becoming an active part of the community helps too - if you post ‘I have a 5 page script about an alcoholic superhero’ and nothing else you’re not going to get much interest. You’ve got to try if you want anything, not just do the bare minimum.

And the world is full of writers who tried really hard and found a good artist partner and made something that they shared. Look at some of those success stories.


I’ve shown this thread off to some folks I know that aren’t on the boards. and out of that I got interest on developing one of the concepts I’ve thrown up here. (This is a previous collaborator though so maybe not the same thing?)

Basically just waiting on schedules to clear up to start knocking it around to see what kind of legs it may have. which is something.

On the other side, as full disclosure I posted a link to artwork up thread that only has 3 click throughs since Friday.


I took the bull by the horns and approached an artist and they’ll be getting a script and everything else to start work later in the week. Of course, I saved up some money so I have a bit of a budget to offer but I don’t have a problem with paying to have pages drawn. There’s pros and cons to both sides of the creative relationship but it’s key to remember that good artists are harder to come across than good writers and nobody really wants to gamble their time to read your script, so if you’re a writer it pays to pay.

Make sure you can see a possibility on a financial return though (in the longterm, not neccessarily in 3-6 months time). And realize what you are getting yourself into, there are a bunch of horror stories out there and you don’t want to get thousands in debt because you think your comic will make millions. Think of yourself as a small business and remember everyone else has to get paid before you do. The upside you’re looking for is that you could end up writing three or four books a month for company that pays you a set rate.

Hopefully after the competition finishes the artists will start posting more frequently but they have to know there’s reward here for them financially, as none have any interest in putting in hundreds of hours of work on any story (that isn’t their own) for free no matter how good you are at writing (unless you’ve met in real life and formed a partnership of course).



Like you, I took the proverbial bull by the horns as well and saved the $'s required to find solid artists to see my vision come to life. It has been one full year of hardship to date with oodles of money out of pocket, changes, delays, naysayers, and the list goes on, but making comics with a team of talented individuals has also been one of the most rewarding experiences in my life to date (and I’m 44 years old with two awesome teenage boys and happily divorced!). However, I’m still a few months out seeing my first graphic novel self-published. I’m sure I have plenty more bumpy roads ahead, but it’s the journey, not the destination, so I can’t see this experience changing.

Back on point… It takes $'s for writers to find talented artists to work with. It really is that simple, so if you’re a writer, start saving. You can find artists to collaborate at a lesser than average page rate if you pitch the idea well enough, but don’t expect talented individuals who have worked all their lives to just give it up for free. Why would they? They may as well work on their own visions.


I have to disagree with some of these comments here. It’s been repeated a few times how hard it is to draw, how many hours it takes to knock out a few pages of art. That is not what I disagree with. To be a talented artist (drawing/inking/coloring,) it does take a lot of time.

What I do disagree with is the notion that the same is not true for a writer. I think the major difference is that it is harder to be a bad artist (drawing/inking/coloring.) It is easy to be a bad writer.

If you put a bad drawing up, even the layperson is aware of the shortcomings.

The fact that there are only a few great writers in the industry (comics and films) should underline that and make it crystal clear. If an artist finds a great script, they should be happy to throw their time at it. If it is a bad script, they should only do it for money. If we were all in it just for the money, there are many easier ways to make money.

If you think that drawing is much harder than writing, I think that means that you have to spend a lot more time working on your craft as a writer.


To be honest I think that compared to other mediums there’s an absolute ton of great writers working in comics, independent comics especially, and for the screen, even more so, albeit many are on the small screen as Holywood is based around budgets and handshakes.

The fact is that many can knock out material pretty quick and the actual majority of time is spent is on rewrites. I think every writer can have days where things flow and things where they don’t but in my experience, if it takes the same amount of time to actually sit down and write 22 pages as it does to draw them (and I’m not talking about thinking time when you’re coming up with ideas, scenes and plot) then the writer should try and work out why that’s happening because 4-8 hours to write five panels is a major issue.

Another thing that’s important to say here is that reading is very much subjective - one of the biggest selling books in the last five years, Fifty Shades Of Grey, is about as adept at wrangling the english language as I am at understanding how people can actually enjoy it.

One person’s E.L. James is another person’s Neil Gaiman and very much vice versa.

I don’t necessarily think the difficulty level of something is a measure of how good or bad a writer is. In both art and language some people are just naturally gifted. That doesn’t mean anyone starts off brilliant in their chosen field, nor does it mean that practice won’t get you to the same point as someone with natural ability. But even then some people can knock out consistent quality without breaking a sweat some of the time and then have other periods where it feels like brain surgery while designing a working rocket.


As far as movies are concerned, big screen or small, there are about 15,000 independent projects a year that are left as digital files on hard drives - never making it the screen. What you are seeing, when they finally hit the screen, are the elite of what has been made that year. A small fraction of what is made. And only a fraction of that is competent. And yes, there is always a handful of great stuff. And of that, the writers are not entirely responsible. Actors, directors, editors, composers, production designers, etc, have a lot to do with how these pieces hit us emotionally. (Similar to how an artist can effect the impact of a comic.)

Naturally gifted: James Joyce was naturally gifted, then he devoted tens of thousands of hours to reading, deconstructing literature/philosophy, also studying music and science, and other topics that serve to buttress his writing.

Comics. There are a handful of great writers in the comic world. There might be a lot of good writers, but there is a vast difference between the two. Back to film as an analogy: A lot of people will see a good movie, and then call it a great movie. The next question is, “was it as good as The Godfather.” -well, no… but. That being said, I don’t agree that there are a lot of great writers. There are a handful, who fortunately can turn out a few titles at a time.

You are right, though. It is subjective. Everything we like is not good.

But this has taken us completely away from the point.

I didn’t write my comment just in reference to yours. In this thread that is already short, “collaboration thread,” the sentiment of devaluing the contribution of a writer versus that of an artist has already been repeated a few times. In terms of the overall quality of a comic, would you rather read a comic that is well written with strong characters, story arc, tension, cliffhangers, reveals, theme, of something with great artwork.

Of course the answer is both, and a good artist can really help with the pacing, the amount of information in a panel, how we feel about a character, etc. But if the writing sucks, the art is not going to make it good.

If you were an artist, in theory, what do you think would move your career further faster? Working for free on something that is great? Or getting paid to illustrate stuff that is mediocre?

An artist who is not published is in the same boat as a writer who is not published.

If you can afford to pay somebody, because it is in your best interest. That’s great. And I am not saying that it is not good advice if it moves you forward in your career quicker.

I am specifically contesting the idea that one has more value than the other. You can compare the amount of time it takes to complete a panel if you like. I can counter with, “it is the quality of the characters and the story that keeps the audience on board.” And we can go back and forth.

But, look at the number of great artist who are not published in this competition alone.

And let’s go back to how this thread started:

For the record, my belief is that if you are trying to get a published artist on board, or someone who is further along in their career than you are, then you should pay them. Whether it is film or comics, or any creative endeavor, however, you are not going to get paid to do it until you have proven that you can do it.

…And looking at this thread, Collaboration Thread, the idea seems to be to put together writers and artists who are starting out (professionally) and putting them together. An artist will do better if they are working with a great writer, not just vice versa.


All valid points. This thread is designed to get artists and writers to collaborate; not writers discussing the worth of one against the other. Both are equally important in the creative process for a quality comic. Although, I don’t know of many writers who have drawn their own quality book without an artist involved, however, I have seen plenty of artists write quality books without writers, but I digress. There simply are many more writers than artists, and this isn’t devaluing the writer, so the artist looking to break in to the market has the pick of the litter, not the writer.

“Artists (drawing/inking/coloring), I am available to write a great script, so let’s collaborate.”

I will let you know how many responses I get…

If you’re a writer, stay positive, save your $'s, find an artist that believes in your project, negotiate a fair page rate, and also make sure they are right for your project. Otherwise, good luck only commenting in forums. This is the brutal truth.


Yeah , this thread is getting hijacked. If the Mods want move it we can continue as all of this stuff is definitely a good conversation to be having, but otherwise it’s probably not the place for it.


So, just throwing this out there. 9Hopefully this isn’t seen as a complete highjack, since it’s proposing to work together.

How many people would be interested in maybe getting a work-shopping thread together?

Present an idea, give and receive feedback, and hopefully everyone comes out the other end with stronger concepts/pitches.

Kind of a case of iron sharpening iron so to speak.


It might help to know that @JimOHara doesn’t speak from ignorance here. Along with publishing his own anthology and having a handful of friends who run their own small press comic publishers, he’s also pretty good friends with one of the most successful comic writers who collaborates with some of the best artists in the industry. You’re obviously welcome to take or leave his advice. :wink:


Hey, I like and agree with his advise. That is why I quoted from his post. (Of course, I don’t know all of his advise… just referring to the kick off of this thread.) And I have successfully implemented his advise, which is in part why I am disagreeing with other comments here. Within a day, I have already begun a collaboration with an artist off of Millarworld.


I started a collaboration as well. :smiley:
Will keep everyone updated.


So, to get this thread moving, I will volunteer to illustrate a 3 - 5 page comic for a writer looking for some experience working with an artist.

First, let me give a long list of caveats.

-My degree was in Fine Arts, not Illustration. There is a difference. I think illustrators are much faster, and technically better.
-I paint in oils, so it would not be the industry standard of pencil, ink, color, etc. I can barely use email, never mind art software.
-I haven’t painted since the early 1990’s (although I still regularly do pen storyboards for film stuff - so I am 90% rusty, but not a 100% rusty.)
-I am not talented enough to do the superhero action comics. For that you would need a trained illustrator. I would be better suited for someone looking to do dark character stuff.

The artist I am working with (with work that I have written) turned over three penciled pages in two days. That is not me. I will be slow.

My motivation is to learn this process from the artist’s perspective so that I can apply that to my writing.

So - if you have a 3 - 5 page character piece that you would like illustrated in a non-traditional style, please send me your scripts. I am not interested in pitches, as great concepts can be poorly executed, and someone else can take the most mundane idea and turn it into something very interesting.

Other artists. Feel free to jump in and offer your services.