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This post brought to you by the word "characters".
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vulpeslibertas
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 06, 2013 5:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Marscaleb wrote:
As the artist, if you're really pursuing the craft it ALWAYS looks wrong; it's always something you could make better.
That's part of my point. If you asked the average artist what the top 5 faults in their art were, most artists could list 5. If you asked the average writer what their top 5 faults are, I suspect that most (but not all) webcomic writers would be able to list less than 5.

Because visual artists are conscious of their faults, they are able to constantly improve them. Because writers are not as conscious, they tend to not constantly improve.

I suspect that this is partially because writing takes more time to absorb (I can analyze an image in seconds, 1000 words will take longer), and partially because human animals have a higher visual literacy than we do a literary literacy (i.e. we look at things more frequently than we read).

---

As far as believability, your characters have to be believable within your premise. If Link (or Zelda) walked into an episode of Star Trek, it would cause severe believability and suspension of disbelief problems. It isn't a problem normally, since Link is consistent (and thus believable) within his own world.

I think we are blurring the line here between suspension of disbelief and consistency with reality. You can have unrealistic characters which are believable.

As far as whether we need more realistic webcomic characters or not, well that's just personal opinion.
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Marscaleb



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PostPosted: Mon Jan 07, 2013 7:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

More than anything else, I suppose I want you to see that "believable characters" is an incredibly vague term. If you really want to talk about comics needing more believable characters, you really ought to define what that means.

vulpeslibertas wrote:
If you asked the average artist what the top 5 faults in their art were, most artists could list 5. If you asked the average writer what their top 5 faults are, I suspect that most (but not all) webcomic writers would be able to list less than 5.


I would argue that has more to do with expressing something in a quantifiable term, more than anything else. Granted, there is a natural ease and alacrity to identifying visual problems over writing ones. But the real ticket is that we know how to describe our problems with one, but don't have the language to describe problems with the other.

I can look at a picture I drew earlier today and say "One of his horns is longer than the other" and "the angle of the ladle is much more slanted than the pot." Describable. Quantifiable.
If I look at a story I wrote and try to describe the faults, I'd be using far more vague terms. "I don't really think he would act this way." Well, how would he act? The only way to show how he would act would be to describe the behavior, which is the equivalent of taking a pen and drawing over the horn and the ladle and saying "It should look like that."

I can think of things that are wrong with my writing, but describing them in effable terms? That would be hard to do.

vulpeslibertas wrote:
As far as believability, your characters have to be believable within your premise. If Link (or Zelda) walked into an episode of Star Trek, it would cause severe believability and suspension of disbelief problems. It isn't a problem normally, since Link is consistent (and thus believable) within his own world.


For a show that has had Mark Twain and Professor Moriarty walk into an episode, and even Abraham Lincoln float through space, I would think the only think "unbelievable" about that is that they legally got to use someone else's character that is not public domain.

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Traegorn



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PostPosted: Mon Jan 07, 2013 7:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Marscaleb wrote:
More than anything else, I suppose I want you to see that "believable characters" is an incredibly vague term.
The question which prompted that response was equally vague, if not moreso... so it only makes sense now, doesn't it.
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vaslittlecrow



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PostPosted: Mon Jan 07, 2013 8:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

We need more bat guano insane and bizarre characters that are not only believable, but with totally mundane/normal conversation patterns that serve to underscore how truly bat guano insane they and their adventures are.
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Traegorn



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PostPosted: Mon Jan 07, 2013 11:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

vaslittlecrow wrote:
We need more bat guano insane and bizarre characters that are not only believable, but with totally mundane/normal conversation patterns that serve to underscore how truly bat guano insane they and their adventures are.
We can't stop here, this is bat country!
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vulpeslibertas
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 08, 2013 2:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ah, but Mark Twain and Moriarty didn't walk into an episode of Star Trek - a holographic projection of them did. And that is completely consistent with the Star Trek world, in which holograms exist.

If the actual Moriarty walked into the Star Trek world, that would cause consistency problems. Those could be remedied by saying that, in the Star Trek universe, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle was writing "fictionalized" truth, and that Moriarty was in fact a real person, about whom Conan Doyle wrote fiction.

Quote:
Granted, there is a natural ease and alacrity to identifying visual problems over writing ones. But the real ticket is that we know how to describe our problems with one, but don't have the language to describe problems with the other.
Why do we have a limited vocabulary? People make words when they need them. Think how many special words are used in any technical profession: Lawyers, artists, programmers, doctors, truck drivers. When people need a word to describe something, they re-purpose an existing word, or they make a new one. The reason our vocabulary is limited is not for lack of words, but for lack of perception of what we are describing.
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Traegorn



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PostPosted: Tue Jan 08, 2013 2:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Actually, it was the real Mark Twain, not a hologram. Bit of timetravel going on that episode.
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vulpeslibertas
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 08, 2013 3:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My mistake. I was sure I'd seen him on the holodeck at some point. However, he arrived in the Star Trek world via Time Travel, which is still an official part of the Star Trek world.

I still maintain that if Link walked onto the helm of the Enterprise and started breaking pots, most Star Trek fans would find it hard to swallow.
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Traegorn



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PostPosted: Tue Jan 08, 2013 4:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh, I don't disagree - I was just instinctively nitpicking.Razz
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vulpeslibertas
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 08, 2013 6:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's the internet. Why the #@$%! wouldn't you disagree? Twisted Evil
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vulpeslibertas
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2013 5:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I feel unloved. Nobody will argue with me. Crying or Very sad
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wendyw
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2013 10:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Of course nobody will argue with you! Your comments are far too stupid to even begin to respond to. Those Mark Twain episodes clearly prove that absolutely anyone could just walk in at any time.

(How am I doing?)
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Casual Notice
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2013 11:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You could not be more wrong, wendy. Those two pisodes only proved that Rick Berman and his staff of "writers" had not only lost all respect for science, they'd never had any for history, either. The story begins with Data's 700-year-old head being discovered in a collapsed basementand proceeds to drag the crew of the Emterprise through a patchwork montage of San Franciscan peronalities, including an 80-year-old Sam Clements, who was living in Connecticut at the time (also, he hated San Francisco), a young Jack London who was very prim and proper (London was kind of a dick--the Turn-of-the-Last-Century's answer to the Hipster), and IIRC ended with the Romulans causing the great San Francisco Earthquake (somehow).

So basically, the episodes don't prove any theories of character except that you can get away with even the most juvenile levels of discourse if you write for TV (which, considering what's being shown on what used to be called The Learning Channel, is not a hypothesis that needed much proving).
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vaslittlecrow



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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2013 6:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Traegorn wrote:
We can't stop here, this is bat country!


Oddly enough, case in point!
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vulpeslibertas
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 2013 3:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ah, I feel right at home. However, all three of you are both wrong, since The Original Series was much better. It's all about pointy ears.
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