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Tools for easier word balloons?
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Metruis
Postpostpostpostpost!


Joined: 14 Oct 2008
Posts: 1019
Location: Canada

PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2012 6:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Clint Wolf wrote:
Interesting that you consider the font size so huge

Because it is huge? And I've got a 1600x900 monitor, so anyone with something smaller is going to see it as EVEN BIGGER.

Generally it's best to make two versions if you want one for mobile too.

Anyway, I put together this tutorial some time ago on how I make bubbles fit the speech in Photoshop. http://calthyechild.deviantart.com/#/d5fs7mb

The bump just reminded me to post it.
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Traegorn



Joined: 16 Feb 2010
Posts: 157

PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2012 12:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well it's a super wide font, which is leading to making the text bigger. Narrower fonts, like DigitalStrip, would get more text in at the same point size.
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Spencey



Joined: 16 May 2008
Posts: 640
Location: Scotland

PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2012 8:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

smbhax.com wrote:
Hm oh this reminds me, apparently some people like doing their balloons with a Mac program (not free) called "Comic Life."


^this. That's what I use. Also available for PC.
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smbhax.com
No! Don't post it there!


Joined: 10 Apr 2009
Posts: 2923
Location: Seattle

PostPosted: Fri Nov 02, 2012 8:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Spencey wrote:
smbhax.com wrote:
Hm oh this reminds me, apparently some people like doing their balloons with a Mac program (not free) called "Comic Life."


^this. That's what I use. Also available for PC.

Oh! I did not know that. Thanks for the clarification!
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Spencey



Joined: 16 May 2008
Posts: 640
Location: Scotland

PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2012 9:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

smbhax.com wrote:
Spencey wrote:
smbhax.com wrote:
Hm oh this reminds me, apparently some people like doing their balloons with a Mac program (not free) called "Comic Life."


^this. That's what I use. Also available for PC.

Oh! I did not know that. Thanks for the clarification!


I know that at one point it was given away free with Macs (in fact that's how I ended up using it), but it has since been released for PC. I love it!
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Doogl McDoog
Blue Dali Person


Joined: 28 Sep 2007
Posts: 436
Location: Northern NJ

PostPosted: Fri Nov 09, 2012 7:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

..


Last edited by Doogl McDoog on Wed Jan 23, 2013 1:16 am; edited 1 time in total
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n9uxu



Joined: 28 Mar 2008
Posts: 587
Location: Michigan

PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2012 9:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Comic Life is also available for windows, and I do tend to use it for the bubbles myself on SO-T. On Saggy, I just photoshop up the bubbles. It's a fine program, but I'm trying to cut the cord as it's just an extra step in an already convoluted process...

Dave
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DoctorStevehatten



Joined: 29 Nov 2012
Posts: 37

PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 6:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Clint Wolf wrote:
Interesting that you consider the font size so huge, since it's an absolute mandate from the artist that we never go smaller than the size we have except for certain special circumstances (whispers, etc.). I think it's so it shows up well in feeds and mobile devices, but regardless she put her foot down a long time ago as Supreme Dictator of Visual Judgment on the topic. Even on those occasions when I've tried to sneak it down to 10 point instead of 11 point to squeeze in more of my lofty phrasings, she's noticed Very Happy

So that part of the equation ain't gonna change anytime soon, but I do appreciate the feedback, regardless.


Dude I agree with that other guy, you're font is gigantic.
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Doogl McDoog
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Joined: 28 Sep 2007
Posts: 436
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2012 6:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

..


Last edited by Doogl McDoog on Wed Jan 23, 2013 1:14 am; edited 1 time in total
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Montanto



Joined: 10 Feb 2005
Posts: 155
Location: Seattle

PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 10:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I do mine on Photoshop using the vector tools. After that I use an action I made called Balloon Maker which creates the balloon on a separate layer and then moves it beneath the text. Occasionally I will use Illustrator but only because Photoshop can't do a decent dashed line.
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Clint Wolf



Joined: 15 Apr 2010
Posts: 298

PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2012 6:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Doogl McDoog wrote:

It's unfortunate that your partner is so adamant about keeping the font size so consistent, though. Varying font sizes helps to imply different tones and volumes for individual words or sentences.


We do that all the time, actually, we just try to keep a consistent baseline these days. Otherwise, varying from it wouldn't have the desired impact. That said, we did experiment in the latest comic page with taking most of the boldfaced words down a notch in size, since the bold version of our font does make a visible increase.

But anyhow, all that's somewhat wildly off-topic at this point versus tools for word balloons. Thanks to everyone who took time to share their methods. Smile
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Marscaleb



Joined: 28 Aug 2012
Posts: 255

PostPosted: Wed Dec 12, 2012 6:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Before I started drawing my comic, I look a bit of time to look more closely at what other comics produced. It shocks me to see how many comics use exact ellipses. How do you get the text to fit those without spending way too much line getting everything lined up?

I wound up drawing all my bubbles by hand. I thought I would get better with it over time, but if anything I've gotten worse. At some point I realized I was getting a lot of stepping in my lines because I was drawing at a higher resolution than my tablet can detect, so I've since zoomed in real close so I could get smoother lines. However, I can't see the whole block of text, so I have to occasionally re-draw bubbles that didn't flow right, or fix defects where lines intersect.

Still, I dream of creating vector bubbles like the way I want. Not a simple ellipse or circle, but a rounded shape with multiple points that change the direction of the curve. I could create this in some CAD programs, but GIMP isn't designed to handle vectors very well; it it would take far too much time to try to fine-tune an array of bezier curves.

I'd like some sort of functionality where I can draw a shape and the program smooths it into gentle curves, or perhaps where I can just place in a small network of points, creating a small polygon, and then the program rounds out the edges for me.
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dpat57
Ich bin ein webcomicker


Joined: 11 Aug 2008
Posts: 2575
Location: Sunny/wet/windy Scotland

PostPosted: Wed Dec 12, 2012 12:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The easy trick with putting text into elliptical balloons is making the top and bottom text lines shorter than the middle lines, wherever you can. No more difficult really than trying to keep text lines roughly the same length when using rounded rectangle balloons.

Quickie snapshot of my process in Paint.NET, adding text (note the wider center lines) then oval balloons on the layer beneath.



...Well crap have I posted in this thread already? Sorry if it's a duplicate.
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Zoe Robinson
Resident Diet Lawyer


Joined: 02 Jul 2007
Posts: 1863
Location: Manchester, UK

PostPosted: Wed Dec 12, 2012 2:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dpat's word layout process is pretty much the same as my method - it works really well because keeping a reasonable white space between the bubble outline and the text automatically causes you to draw an ellipsis. Smile
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