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Metruis
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Joined: 14 Oct 2008
Posts: 1019
Location: Canada

PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 6:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was emoing at a friend on DeviantArt who was a much better artist than me when I was about 13 pages into my comic on ComicGenesis. So I consider this to be really one of the most critically important pieces of advice I ever got.

Quote:
It's important that the art is fun, after all! If you hate it, and hate doing it, that's enough reason to change and move on.

(stuff cut from here as it was a long post)

Oh, and as for the painting over the pencils... why not try it? It might be fun!


So, no mad crazy secrets here. Just a simple piece of advice: your first priority is to have fun with it.

The post encouraged me to try paint a page without lineart and... the rest is history. The only notable thing about my comic is the unique art style that I never would have tried without her advice. Cool

I have never received any advice on promotion personally, but I found blogs like Floating Lightbulb and Winged Wolf Studio (Kez's) to be useful with their posts on advertising and whatnot. My most helpful link for that was a webcomic promotion advice article that's unfortunately on a site that crashed. =(
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swankivy



Joined: 14 May 2006
Posts: 121
Location: Tampa, Florida

PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 8:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The best piece of advice I got was before I actually went live with mine. I did an experimental month of comics, seeing if I could keep up with an update schedule and decide for sure whether I wanted to have a comic. When I told one of my friends that I was doing one, he said this:

"You better make sure you update when you say you will. Webcomic fans get REALLY RABID if you don't keep to your update schedule."

I'd like to extend that advice to saying that you should have an update schedule you're comfortable with and do your best to stick to it, and if possible, let people know that you are not updating ahead of time if you must skip one.

In my case, my readers know that if no update appears, I'm probably dead. If you don't take your update schedule seriously, your readers might not take YOU seriously.
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katastrophe



Joined: 19 Aug 2008
Posts: 287

PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 12:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

"Gaaaaah make it smaller!" -- from someone here in the "Check Out My Comic" forum. I had not grasped the difference between dpi and size and was posting comics in an obscenely high value of both. Did I thank this person? My August last year was hell, so probably not, but THANK YOU. And a girl over in the ComicDish forum told me to use borderless word balloons, which was good advice and also made me start paying attention to stuff like borders, and arrangement, and so on. I am utterly clueless about graphic layout, so yes, this stuff was necessary of me.

I also owe thanks to David from vendable, who keeps prodding me to be more noir. I would go play at Marx Brothers all day if allowed, and really my setting demands more of me....

Other than that -- this wasn't advice per se, but when I first started out I was very nervous about using Poser art, so I went and looked at all the major Poser comics and the critiques they'd gotten. What really stood out was that the "Uncanny Valley" comments were universally about character poses and expressions. So when I started I focused almost entirely on getting the poses right, and did backgrounds and textures and lighting as I could work them in. Dunno if this was successful per se, but no one's blasted me for the "art" yet....
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munkymu
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Joined: 30 Nov 1999
Posts: 1735
Location: Canadia

PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 3:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I can't remember whether I found this somewhere or whether it was advice I gave myself, but the most important thing I've learned is to just do it. Don't talk about it, don't plan it out endlessly, don't redraw the first 10 pages, it doesn't need to be perfect it just needs to get done.
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Nismorack



Joined: 17 Nov 2005
Posts: 415
Location: Netherlands

PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 5:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

From a post by Ryan Sohmer:

"If you want to be treated like a professional, then act like one."
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Midtoon



Joined: 20 Apr 2009
Posts: 189
Location: California, USA

PostPosted: Wed Jul 01, 2009 7:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

plughead wrote:
Yeah, few people realize that we creators are SELDOM satisfied with what we're doing! We have this inner monologue telling us that our work is always crap. The perspective is wrong, the proportions, the awkward angles, the THIS, the THAT and the WHATEVER.

But it's a natural defense mechanism to DEFEND ourselves when others are on the attack, or when we PERCEIVE others are on the attack. But in reality, few people will ever be more critical of us than we are of ourselves.

We need to be gracious, appreciative and humble when others give us feedback. Chances are we already KNOW what we're being told. Shooting the messenger(s) does nothing for our own self-improvement.


Do not get discouraged when you SEE your weaknesses. Seeing your own weakness is a sign that you are ready to improve. This will be especially obvious to you when you think of the many people who consider their work non-plus ultra awesomeness. They are usually not very good, and if they are, they are stagnant and not improving.

The fact that you can see improvement needs on your work is a good sign, so don't let it be a discouragement. Progress, in my own opinion, is not a gradual slope but more like a series of sharp climbs followed by plateaus. The higher your plateau, the wider your vision, so take your own criticism as an early pre-release ad for a spurt of progress.
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chrispco



Joined: 09 Jan 2009
Posts: 109
Location: Virginia

PostPosted: Wed Jul 01, 2009 8:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

"I really don't think the people who succeed creatively are necessarily the ones who start with the most talent. They're the ones whose dissatisfaction with their early work prompts them to try to do better, rather that prompting them to quit in frustration."
-DC Simpson

The key is not to tear up the early, raw work. I cringe when artists do that. I'm guilty of that too. It took 15 years of starting and quitting before I realized I had to just DO it and learn to draw cartoons from the ground up.

Keep your early work, learn from it and build upon it. Take criticism (easier said than done at times, but try) and use your own eye to keep improving.

You can look back at your old work and say, "Ugh! I was so raw!" and tear it up - or you could look back and say, "I was raw, but going in the right direction."
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Metruis
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Joined: 14 Oct 2008
Posts: 1019
Location: Canada

PostPosted: Wed Jul 01, 2009 9:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't hate my old stuff. I cringe a bit at what's publically up in my archive for all eternity, but such is life!

I guess it goes along with my most appreciated piece of advice: have fun FIRST and find something that works for you... but I've always been able to look back on my old drawings and think "hey, cool, look what I could do! It might've been misshapen and ugly but it was a stepping stone to now!"

I go with the flow. If I hate the end result, I'll post it anyway and move on. I never tear up my early work, I post it and laugh and say 'look what I can do now!' I've never torn up a picture.

For the first time in my life I've been tempted to "tear up a picture" and throw out my webcomic. One person says 'nooo, don't do it' but I wonder if she's the only noe who would. I know the writing's bad, and bad writing's unsalvagable where bad art can be retconned. Yet I also know my writing's getting more solid as I go, and I don't want to sacrifice the massive amount of improvement it's undergoing to start anew, not yet.
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munkymu
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Joined: 30 Nov 1999
Posts: 1735
Location: Canadia

PostPosted: Thu Jul 02, 2009 3:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think that the key is to sketch so much that you can't even *find* your early work. That's how you get good. I don't find looking back more than a few years to be all that productive.
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