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Tools for easier word balloons?
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Clint Wolf



Joined: 15 Apr 2010
Posts: 298

PostPosted: Wed Jul 18, 2012 5:25 pm    Post subject: Tools for easier word balloons? Reply with quote

Hi folks,

I was wondering if there were any tools or programs out there that might make for easier and more flexible word balloon creation. Right now Dawn (my wife and artist) uses Photoshop to create and color the art, then I add lettering, there's this trial and error process of trying to create properly sized and oriented ovals and stems, where if it doesn't turn out right Dawn has to delete/undo and try again.

It can be frustrating for her, particularly if we decide on any last-minute changes. She knows Photoshop far better than I do so I'm taking her word for it that this is as good a method as it gets, but I'm wondering if any of you have ideas or suggestions. If it's a third-party program, preferably something free that accepts PSDs (though I'm not sure if Adobe frowns on that), but if it'll truly help our process I might crack open the piggy bank.
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naedalto



Joined: 25 Apr 2010
Posts: 35

PostPosted: Wed Jul 18, 2012 6:45 pm    Post subject: In my opinion Reply with quote

Please try using Paint. I mean, windows paint. really.

I'm using xp version so I can't do the antialising thing currently,
but as long as I can remember, antialise is possible in windows 7.

Just try.


http://comic.ncity.net
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Clint Wolf



Joined: 15 Apr 2010
Posts: 298

PostPosted: Wed Jul 18, 2012 8:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

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.
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Uncle Greedy



Joined: 02 Jun 2011
Posts: 286

PostPosted: Wed Jul 18, 2012 10:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tools for wordballons? How about a pen, ruler and scanner? Nothing can beat that.
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Traegorn



Joined: 16 Feb 2010
Posts: 157

PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2012 12:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If the balloons are a separate layer, can't you just resize and adjust them as needed?
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vaslittlecrow



Joined: 01 Aug 2005
Posts: 756

PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2012 3:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Clint Wolf

Might this be of help?

Freebies:
http://max.designwalker.com/webdesign/speech-bubble/

If you are willing to spend some money:
http://www.cartoonsolutions.com/store/catalog/Comic-Word-Bubbles-p-1-c-323.html

I use PaintShop Pro, so vector word balloons are super easy to make. Just select the word balloon you want. Resize at will. Adjust the nodes. Baddabing!
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smbhax.com
No! Don't post it there!


Joined: 10 Apr 2009
Posts: 3012
Location: Seattle

PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2012 4:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, I was reading some font article yesterday mentioning that at Marvel they use some version of Illustrator for the lettering--and presumably for the balloons as well. It does seem like something vectors are pretty much made to order for.

But yeah I'd hand draw 'em, personally. Way more fun. :)
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lianne



Joined: 07 Jan 2011
Posts: 69

PostPosted: Fri Jul 20, 2012 2:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Really? I hate drawing speech bubbles! Possibly that's b/c I'm terrible at it and I'm never quite happy with how they look. But then, I probably hate it less than I would doing them on the computer...
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dpat57
Ich bin ein webcomicker


Joined: 11 Aug 2008
Posts: 2629
Location: Sunny/wet/windy Scotland

PostPosted: Fri Jul 20, 2012 8:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rounded rectangles always looked OK to me, and are probably the simplest to create which is a point in their favor, but maybe they're not bubble-y enough for other comic makers. I use ellipses in one of my comics because it suits the fantasy genre (other comics are Sci-Fi). But Paint.NET also has a Speech Bubble option under Effects > Text Formations (a free add-on, available via the Paint.NET forums) which could be worth a try. You can either input text when creating the bubble, or you can make a blank bubble around text you've typed in another layer. The tail can also be added while creating the bubble, or you can select "none" and add a tail manually.



Added: a little step-by-step guide I did, using Paint.NET. The same options are probably found in Photoshop, etc.
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Clint Wolf



Joined: 15 Apr 2010
Posts: 298

PostPosted: Sat Jul 21, 2012 5:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Interesting, I'll look into that. Thanks for all the tips, everyone!
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TheEpicBeyond



Joined: 25 Sep 2012
Posts: 3

PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2012 5:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I work in photoshop and I usually enter my text first and then place a layer for bubbles underneath the text layers. That way i dont have to squeeze words into the bubble i wrap the bubble around the words
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smbhax.com
No! Don't post it there!


Joined: 10 Apr 2009
Posts: 3012
Location: Seattle

PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2012 10:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hm oh this reminds me, apparently some people like doing their balloons with a Mac program (not free) called "Comic Life."
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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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smbhax.com
No! Don't post it there!


Joined: 10 Apr 2009
Posts: 3012
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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