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Trying to figure out how to arrange this page...

 
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Marscaleb



Joined: 28 Aug 2012
Posts: 258

PostPosted: Fri Sep 28, 2012 5:38 am    Post subject: Trying to figure out how to arrange this page... Reply with quote

So, I'm a bit unsure as to how to arrange this page I'm making.

The script as I have written it is as thus:

(Panel 1)
Sheea: I'm sorry about that. He's normally not this bad but something has been agitating him lately.
Victoria: It's not your fault, you don't need to apologize.
(Panel 2)
Sheea: Here, why don't you take one of my dresses and change out of those wet clothes.
Cherise: Oh, thank you so much! That is so thoughtful of you!

In the first panel we see Sheea leaving her father's room, and we can see into the room to see her father sitting on his bed. We need to see this to secure an event from the page before this.

The second panel is in her room, as she pulls a dress out of her dresser. The remainder of the comic follows in her room.

To fit the rest of the script onto the page, this only can take up about two panels. The first panel ought to be a little large to accommodate a decent shot so we can see her and her father clearly enough.

But this basically has no transition to her grabbing a dress in her room. As I was about to draw it, I realized that it is very sudden. We see her leaving her father's room, and then suddenly bam! she's in her room, grabbing a dress out of the dresser.

I'm trying to think of a way to smooth that transition. I don't really have the space to draw a whole panel just to show her walking into her room, and such would only seem awkward anyway.

I need something small that can ease the transition.
Thoughts?
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wendyw
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Joined: 10 Jul 2008
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 28, 2012 6:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

What about splitting Sheea's lines in the first panel, so basically you get:

Panel one: (leaving first room)
Sheea: I'm sorry about that.

Panel two: (travelling between rooms)
Sheea: He's normally not this bad but something has been agitating him lately.
Victoria: It's not your fault, you don't need to apologize.

Panel three:(entering second room - Sheea is halfway across the room, Cherise is only just entering the doorway)
Sheea: Here, why don't you take one of my dresses and change out of those wet clothes.
Cherise: Oh, thank you so much! That is so thoughtful of you!

Of course I don't know the layout of the building they're in or how far they're actually travelling between rooms, but that's how I'd probably do it, assuming of course the rooms aren't too far apart.
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ttallan
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 28, 2012 1:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't quite understand why you aren't able to squeeze a 3rd panel in, but maybe it'll make more sense when we see the page. Perhaps you'd have room for a small transition panel, like a close-up of feet walking (with dialogue, perhaps).

If you absolutely can't put in a third panel, you could try showing the open door to the bedroom in the second panel with Cherise clearly moving through it, as though she just walked in (although I really have no idea from your brief description above where Cherise came from). You don't need to show Sheea's dresser (if you're worried about that), just that she's holding up some clothes to offer to her friend.
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Marooned



Joined: 25 Mar 2008
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 28, 2012 5:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd encourage you to take pencil and paper in hand and thumbnail out your pages. Trying to figure this out in your mind isn't doing you (or the people you are asking for help) any favors.

Comics are a visual medium. Thumbnails are your friend.

So sketch it out, and when you sketch it out, make it fast. My initial sketches/thumbnails generally take me 2-3 minutes to do the whole page. It's very rough, but it gives me an immediate idea if things are working or not.

At that point, my "risk" of having to change anything is zero. I grab another piece of paper, or draw over a panel or whatever. Generally after 5-10 minutes of this, I have a layout for my page that I like.

Now you can start drawing (digitally or traditionally) and make tweaks as needed, but you shouldn't have to make any major modifications - you've already done that work.

The great thing about this is you can do this 2, 5, 10 times until you get a layout that works. If you incorporate this step into your work, you should see your pages improve by a lot.

Good luck.
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Marscaleb



Joined: 28 Aug 2012
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 28, 2012 5:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ttallan wrote:
I don't quite understand why you aren't able to squeeze a 3rd panel in,

It's just because space is going to be tight on this page.
I'm keeping my page layouts with printing in mind, and I'd rather keep this page in the remaining space of this printed-page so that the next page starts on its own printed-page, since that one is an entirely different location. (It's a bigger transition than this is, so a new page is useful.)
It also has a lot to do with the size I tend to draw things at. I'm still learning to get that right and I've been measuring space for this one to help me understand. To cram an extra decent-sized panel would take up more room than I'd like. Fitting a small panel would be do-able, but there's only so much you can fit in a small panel.

ttallan wrote:
You don't need to show Sheea's dresser (if you're worried about that), just that she's holding up some clothes to offer to her friend.


Hmm, that's true.

wendyw wrote:
What about splitting Sheea's lines in the first panel,


That's an idea to consider.

---

I think it might be best if I could down-play the transition somehow. I don't want to show people going into her room, I just want them to be there, but I need tome cue to make that seem logical.

I've been thinking about it, and I have two thoughts that might work.
One would be to simply add a line at the bottom of the first panel where Sheea says "Come into my room for a moment." It's a little clunky, but it makes the transition logical.
The other thought would be to change the angle of the first panel. Instead of seeing through the door into her father's room, we see from inside her father's room, looking back to see Sheea as she leaves. Perhaps we could see a partial glimpse of Victoria through the door. Then when we switch to being in Sheea's room, the transition doesn't seem sudden. We saw a view from there and now we are seeing from here. We can expect the change in angle and forget that there is also a minuscule change in time.

Now that I think of it, I think the change in time is the problem, not the change in location. We can follow that there is a change of location, but it is the slight gap in time that feels awkward. If we draw attention to it (such as with a narration box) then it seems like a much larger gap in time than it is supposed to be. But it is just a large enough gap of time that it is just barely noticeable if we don't disguise it somehow.

So really I think I just need a way to have people ignore a slight jump in time.
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smbhax.com
No! Don't post it there!


Joined: 10 Apr 2009
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 29, 2012 9:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Depending on what needs to be in the third panel, maybe you could pull the time back a bit, so instead of already being in her room in the second panel, they're at the doorway, perhaps just starting to open the door or even just reaching for the doorknob. Change the tense of Sheea's line from present to immediate future, maybe dial down Cherise's excitement a notch--since she doesn't see the promised dress yet--and voila!
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Marscaleb



Joined: 28 Aug 2012
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 29, 2012 5:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

smbhax.com wrote:
Depending on what needs to be in the third panel, maybe you could pull the time back a bit,


That works for everything I described, but doesn't work with the rest of the comic. Clever thought though, I'll have to keep that one in my tool belt in case I need it on a future page.

Marooned wrote:
I'd encourage you to take pencil and paper in hand and thumbnail out your pages.


Oh, I missed your post since it came up while I was writing my reply.
That is sound advice, to be sure. I can't fit it in my production method, though. I'm drawing on regular 8.5x11 pieces of paper, inking, scanning, and then doing th rest on computer. To fit everything onto one page I'd either need bigger pages and a much bigger scanner, or I'd need to draw things very very tiny to fit it all on one page.

I suppose I could sketch out a clear plan on one piece of paper, but without a proper sense of scale I could easy draw a frame at the wrong size to match that design, or fail to have it cover the proper area. It might not be such a problem with regular pages, but when I know I'm tight on space it kinda defeats the purpose, because those little shortcomings become a huge problem.
I have been setting my layout directly on the computer using the lines I scanned, which makes it quick and easy to move things around and try different layouts. It doesn't give me the option to try different views of the scene, though.
For this page I have been trying to measure my drawings to predict how they can fit on the final page, and yes I did draw a small thumbnail sketch of the panel layout to help me figure it out, (really small, just a visual note, not a guide,) but I do not yet know how well this will work. If I find I measured wrong, everything will be off.

I'm still new at this, and it's a learning process, so I do much appreciate the advice.
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Marscaleb



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PostPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2012 7:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote


(Though not clear in the sketch, the character in the middle of the first panel is outside the room, and half of her is visible through the doorway)

So I scanned in my initial light sketches to see what I could do. I pushed the first panel as much as I could, (more than I'd like it to be,) and I think I can fit in another panel if it's not too big. Still, showing her walking to the other room... I think this just steps on the joke a little bit. I also want to redraw that second panel if I don't put something between them.

I've thrown in some temporary panel lines for your sakes, and this is the whole page, including the page before it.

http://imageshack.us/a/img339/5287/1112v2.png
(Edit: updated last panels)

If I draw attention to people going into her room then people would wonder why Danson (the guy in the scene) is in the room, detracting from the humor. I need to transition to it in a way where people are ignoring the transition. People are just "there." I think changing the angle of that first panel helps, but is it enough?
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Last edited by Marscaleb on Mon Oct 01, 2012 11:29 pm; edited 2 times in total
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ttallan
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2012 11:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ah, see, now it makes more sense. I was under the impression that the two panels were somehow taking up the entire page, and I couldn't figure out why you didn't have room to add any more.

My suggestion: in that first panel, instead of showing the two girls just standing there, have them both actively walking out the door, looking back over their shoulders at the father. The camera angle can remain the same. Then in the second panel, have the first character already in the room at the dresser, possibly in the act of taking out the clothes, while the second character is still entering the doorway. The rest of the sequence should follow without any changes.
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Marscaleb



Joined: 28 Aug 2012
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2012 11:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ttallan wrote:
in that first panel, instead of showing the two girls just standing there, have them both actively walking out the door, looking back over their shoulders at the father.

The sketch is so rough that it's not clear, but the daughter is walking out of the room, and the other lady is standing outside the room; only half of her is visible through the doorway. (I've added that description in the post. Also, an update to the full page view, since I made the linework for the rest of the page.)

ttallan wrote:
Then in the second panel, have the first character already in the room at the dresser, possibly in the act of taking out the clothes, while the second character is still entering the doorway. The rest of the sequence should follow without any changes.


Hmmm... *thoughtful consideration*
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ttallan
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 02, 2012 1:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Marscaleb wrote:
The sketch is so rough that it's not clear, but the daughter is walking out of the room, and the other lady is standing outside the room; only half of her is visible through the doorway.

I'd have both of them walking instead of standing. The key here is movement (and it also helps your art look more dynamic).

*looks at page update*

Nope, now I've lost it again. Where does the guy come from? He vanished for a few panels and then suddenly appeared again. If he followed them from the other room, you might need to show him in the background or something in at least one of the intervening panels.
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Marscaleb



Joined: 28 Aug 2012
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 02, 2012 3:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Okay, so I've changed the positions in the second panel, and now I have this:

http://imageshack.us/a/img685/8742/1112v3.png

Does this to flow well-enough? Or should I make some further changes?

ttallan wrote:

Nope, now I've lost it again. Where does the guy come from? He vanished for a few panels and then suddenly appeared again.

Right, sorry, without the backgrounds you have only vague dialogue to tell you this. The first comic (the top half) is OUTSIDE and the second comic (the bottom half) is INSIDE. That will be very apparent when the backgrounds are done.
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Last edited by Marscaleb on Wed Oct 17, 2012 9:10 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Marscaleb



Joined: 28 Aug 2012
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 9:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well if anyone cares to see it, the comic has been finished and published.

(The comic immediately before)
http://maytiacomic.com/archives/360
(The comic in question)
http://maytiacomic.com/archives/365

Thanks for the advice, whether used or not (because if nothing else it's nice to see that people care.)
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smbhax.com
No! Don't post it there!


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 18, 2012 6:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I like the purple in the air. :D
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