Look, that thing you want to do? Stop being a weenie and just do it.
I just wanted to reblog this because it’s so true.
I’m so happy that I just started drawing my comic one day, it has taught me so much more than just prepping for the comic would have.
I think that people forget that stuff like reference images, turnarounds, maps… that’s often stuff done by a team of people FOR a team. Production art is very attractive, and it’s fun to do, but ultimately, if you’re alone in your team, the preparation material is only needed if you feel it’s needed.
The purpose of most stuff like turnarounds is to insure stuff stays on model. Chances are, if you’re the only person doing it, you’ll be on model. And trust me that I say your model will evolve over time anyways because you’re not making a movie – you’re making a story that will span over a large amount of time. As demonstrated :
The “just start your comic rule” doesn’t mean “start without preparation”, but rather “start with the preparation level you feel comfortable with”. If you’re spending a lot of time on preparation rather then pages and story because people make you believe it’s a requirement, then you are definitely not in your comfort zone. There is not obligatory quota of preparation to meet to make a good comic. Find your zone. Then just start.
I feel really strongly about this!! The best quote I’ve heard on the subject was from the comic book writer, Jason Latour: ‘You carefully draft plans for a house and then you build it in a hurricane. That is what it’s like to make comics.’
Not a lot of people know that I got dared to start Take off! in two months. And the story I started with is absolutely not the story I ended with– and a lot of that ending only came from having worked with those characters long enough to get a better sense of where they should go. Take off! benefited a lot from jumping in. And that’s what a lot of people miss out on by not starting, is where the story will go once they’re actually in it.
Godslave is a bit different, in that it’s a story that required a lot of research and writing that needed to be planned ahead. But the bulk of that work was done while working on Take off!– and as soon as Take off! ended I gave myself 3 months to work up a few pages and build a website. And even with all the research and planning I got in I find my characters evolving and motivations changing— which is something that would only happen after spending time writing and drawing them over and over.
So the best advice I can give to anyone who is still working on research and character designs and scripting– is to give yourself a launch date. I’ll give you the same dare I was given in 2010. Start your comic in two months. Just /start/ it. Because no matter how much planning you put in, you will still be building the house in a hurricane.
One of my favorite things about reading webcomics that have been running for a long time is noticing the art shift a lot of works take as the creator gets more comfortable and confident in their style, which usually comes by just…consistently drawing every week. You don’t know exactly how much preparation work they did before hand (character sheets, environment, etc) but after 2-3 years their style might have evolved so much that all that prep work hasn’t been directly useful in a long time.
YU+ME almost never happened because I tried waiting until it was perfect. When I realized it never would be, I made a comic. It isn’t perfect, but people like it.
I spent months trying to perfect one comic slide, and then I realised it’d never be perfect, and I finished it all within an hour and I’ve never been more proud.