millarworld.tv Comics Creators

Please critique my Art


#1

Hi all,

I’m relatively new to creating comics and a couple of months ago I posted a few pages on the forum that I’d been working on based on Deadpool. At the time some of you were kind enough to give me some tips on how to move forward in the right direction.

Since then I’ve started working on my own comic and have pencilled the first act, which is a flashback of when the protagonist was a serving soldier in Afghanistan.

The area’s I’ve worked to improve on since my last post are; working in perspective, including backgrounds, and leaving appropriate space for the lettering.

I was wondering if anyone would mind giving me a critique on the few pages I’ve posted below, both good points and things I can improve on, so that I can continue to learn and hopefully one day reach my goal as a published artist. Any advice would be much appreciated!


#2

Also, if anyone is interested in seeing more of my work you can find it on my Facebook page;

I hope it’s ok to post the link, if not Admin feel free to remove :slight_smile:


#3

All good stuff Scott!
Nice angles, clean lines and the dog looks fantastic.
You need to work on your anatomy and perspective a little but apart from that you are going in the right direction.
Keep going!
Post more!


#4

Thanks Matt! Much appreciated :smiley:

The dog has been a nightmare to get right at some of the angles I’ve wanted to capture, but I think I’ve just about got it.

The perspective thing is pretty new to me, and that’s something I’m learning as I go, but constantly doodling to try and get it right - same with the anatomy :smile:


#5

i can’t draw at all, so you are waaaaay ahead of me, fella. :smiley:

You know how to get to carnegie hall, dont ya?


#6

Ha! Practice, practice, practice! :smiley:


#7

Beware of gravity. Just like perspective lines, there are center of gravity lines. Gotta use the same one per panel if there’s two figures or more, otherwise one figure will look like it’s leaning unnaturally. (P1, p2; P3, p2.) I quite like your linework overall and the storytelling is clear (which is very critical, so well done there!). Watch out for gravity. Gravity sucks.


#8

Only thing I can say is check your references. Your M4 looks good in one panel but more like a shot gun in the next. Plus I’m not sure if the explosion was from the grenade or land mine.


#9

Thanks! I’ll try to work on it and keep it in mind from now on :smiley:


#10

Another good tip, I’ll keep it in mind and try to keep everything matching on point throughout.

Thanks to everyone for taking the time to help me out. I’ve taken everything on board and hopefully I’ll continue to improve to the standard where I can work in the industry :slight_smile:


#11

General advice, not sure if it’s helpful but one thing I was told was to never compare your work to any other artist but rather think of every artist’s work as a separate thing that is growing infinitely.


#12

Ok. I have no idea what’s going on in the story, so will give some general thoughts if that’s ok!

First page: avoid avoid avoid! stacking two panels like this if you can - it’s a confusing read. While it sort of works here (assuming I should be reading panel 1, then moving right to the man with dog then moving left) that’s largely because the CARTER name tag works to move the readers eyes to the right where the figure then leads the eye down - clever plan if it was intentional, lucky accident if not!

Watch your shadows - if the figure is in a hot country you’d normally expect the shadows to fall on the right hand side (we’re cued up to expect shadows in that direction, day time the sun is usually to the left, shadows to the right - it’s not neccessarily always true in the story, but if it isn’t true there should be a good reason for it)

I’m guessing your using CLIP Paint or Manga Studio - the give away (for me) is that the thickness of the panels are different on the horizontal and the vertical - personally I hate that and don’t understand why it’s the default - it’s your choice, but know that’s a choice your making (I think it bunches panels both too close together and the makes tiered panels too far apart) I use a 5mm both horizontal and vertical (it’s the 2000AD recommended.)

Panel 2 (Man with Dog) if you’d drawn the dog on his right (our left) you’d’ve left yourself a nice big bit of dead area above his right (our left) shoulder - perfect for dialogue. While as is there’s room for dialogue, the preferred convention is top left dead areas where possible)

Panel 4 I like this shot, but how much better would it have been with more shadow (say shadowy silhoutte of the two figures in the shadowy ruins?) Would help the composition (which is a good setup - but could be made loads better by shadows!)

Page 2:
Welcome to perfect town! Maybe rough up the edges (I know this is pencils, but some debris, some broken lines in the buildings, etc would help believaility). Good shot thought, but feel like good use of shadow could help steer the eye a little better)

(Simon Fraser once said to me “You can use shadow for story telling” and I’ve never forgotten it - don’t be fixated on light sources, worry about “how do I empathise this” or “sell that emotion”)

Panel 2: I’d move the dog over to the right, you’d get his entire tale in and room for dialogue.

Panel 3: Nice shot, but you’d want to see the buildings in the background here to help sell it’s happening in the same local.

Page 3, panel 1:
Find this figure a little confusing, is he looking left or right - close up I see his eyes look right, but I think (and maybe it’s just me) when your arm is up like that then your shoulders move down if looking over your left arm and up if looking over your right arm (try it!)

Panel 2 (I’m assuming man and dog is panel? maybe the grenade is? confusing two tiered panel arrangement! Avoid!)

You can lose the dogs paw and the picture would look better. Also, I suspect you’ve gone with a full bleed (ie drawn off the page) because you’ve run out of room to fit it all in, try and use bleed sparingly for effect, it’ll have an actual impact on the story then.

Panel 3: Context wise this grenade could belong to anyone, the terrorist? a different soldier? some person we haven’t seen yet? If the terrorist you should have him wear something on his wrist of have a distinct tattoo or a sleeve that way we can hook straight into the closeup without confusion.

panel 4: grenade throwing dude, his hand is overlapping his body making him hard to read - you should move his arm out so it reads better as someone throwing something. Also, I’d rearrange the panel here so that we see the grenade thrower, the grenade THEN the reaction, that way you have a …what…? what!? WHAT!!! panel rather than a “oh!” single moment.

Page 4 THIS is a full bleed moment, if you can do full bleed this is the place you need to do it. Dudes body looks weird, I’d need to play with it in photoshop but I’d almost certainly move his upper torso down towards his backside, we shouldn’t see so much of his back.

My apologies if any of the above reads as curt - hopefully I’ve covered ground others haven’t and hopefully there’s something of use in my comments!

BTW : 2000AD 10 commandments, comic artist gold:

The 2000 AD Artist’s Ten Commandments

  1. THE FIRST PERSON TO SPEAK SHOULD ALWAYS BE ON THE LEFT
  2. ALWAYS LEAVE THE TOP 25% OF EACH PANEL EMPTY FOR LETTERING (MORE IF NECESSARY)
  3. LEAVE ROOM FOR THE TITLE AND CREDITS ON THE FIRST PAGE
  4. LEAVE A 5mm (on A3) GUTTER BETWEEN EVERY PANEL
  5. KEEP THE ‘CAMERA’ ANGLES VARIED AND VISUALLY INTERESTING
  6. TELL THE STORY - SHOW WHAT’S RELEVANT
  7. MAKE YOUR CHARACTERS ACT AND REACT - GET INSIDE THEIR HEADS
  8. NEVER BLEED THE IMAGE OFF THE LAST PANEL OF THE STORY - LEAVE ROOM FOR ‘NEXT PROG’ LINE
  9. LEAD THE READER’S EYE ACROSS THE PAGE SMOOTHLY
  10. IF YOU’RE NOT SURE ABOUT SOMETHING, ASK THE EDITORIAL TEAM!

From:
http://www.2000adonline.com/submissions/
Good


#13

Wow, I honestly cant thank you enough for taking the time to do this Pj, its very much appreciated!

Im going to study what you’ve told me, take some notes and get back to the drawing tablet and make changes where I can.

I’m still really new to creating comics, I only really started learning a few months ago… but with advice like this early on as well as what some of the other guys have said - hopefully it can save me a lot of time in reaching my goal.

Alongwith drawing I’ve been writing a lot too after studying how to write comics. So many ideas, but so little time due to my full time work commitments.

But I’ll keep plugging away though and even if it takes years, eventually I’m determined I’ll get there!

Thanks again :smiley:


#14

Is this just an artistic convention? Because in the real world, the position of the shadows would depend on the direction you’re looking, and could be on your left or your right.

If it’s an artistic convention, do you know the reason for it? Is it to do with clarity of compostion or leading your eye or something like that?


#15

Longstanding artistic convention based on, presumably, even longer standing human nature, look at the buttons on desktop icons, all assume lighting from top left - once you reverse the lighting the buttons look recessed. Found this wikipedia entry on same: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Top-left_lighting

(I said “if the figure is in a hot country” - but I was mixing myself up, the lighting should always be top left unless you’re going for something very specific)

As a rule I like to work shadows to help clarity of storytelling and so will uplight/side light entirely to help the reader read the page, but my base is top left lighting.


#16

Ok, that’s really interesting, thanks. I had never consciously noticed it before.


#17

It’s true that desktop icons work that way, of course, as I should have known. It is literally what I am working on today:

Buttons are top-left lit, recessed boxes for typing text into are bottom-right lit.

I knew it without knowing it was a general rule in art :slight_smile:


#18

Hey!

As a writer outsourcing to artists, I just hire based on whether or not I personally dig the work. I honestly can’t give any technical comments on how to improve by my untrained eye. BUT, what I can say is I love backgrounds. For me it adds to the page even though I know it’s more work for the artist… For your page 3 as an example, unless a colorist really works his/her magic, I think you can add a little more to the page.

I hope this helps in some small way at least!

G


#19

I agree, Its good stuff. But it’s just some anatomy stuff that holds it back. Keep going, man