3D Comic Book Tips And Pictures

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  • Lots of great tips and lovely work here.  I have a comic I"d love to share with you all.  I've been developing the style for awhile.   I hope  it is  one of the best looking 3d/CG comics out there...but seeing some of you alls GREAT work that is a hard bar to pass.  :)  Thank you for the inspiration.  

    This looks lik a good start to a 3D comic. You've got some nicely designed characters here. In general I can follow the gist of the story from what I'm seeing, but I have two questions:

    1. The guy with his arms up in the air, is he being magically/scientifically restrained? 
      If so, perhaps some sort of glow or effect would help make that more apparent.
    2. In panel 4, is she kicking him off the roof?
      The composition here doesn't make that clear. The red guy is cluttering things up so I can't focus on her movements. Also, her hair is hiding her face, which we really should see so we can read her emotions at this time. And maybe there should be stronger reactions from the gray and red guy. Even just a mouth opened in shock or an evil grin.

    Anyway, those are just a few thoughts. As I said, it looks like you have a great start to a cool comic. Looking forward to seeing more.

  • edited September 2020

    So after a couple of false starts, I've gotten a new comic book started. I'm calling it Transylvania County. Rendered using the sketchy toon shader, with post work in Photoshop.  Thanks to MagicJava for the Kirby Krackle:

     

    Post edited by Chohole on
  • 3Diva3Diva Posts: 11,018

    @duckbomb @FirstBastion Thank you so much for the awesome comments! I'm really glad you like the new style. :D I'm REALLY excited about the new style and the new script. I'm having fun putting together the first few scenes. It's a SLOW process, but dang it's fun seeing the story coming to life as I work on the scenes and start rendering out the first few panels.


    The slowest process for me right now is setting up the scenes. I can't really use "canned" poses as 1) I don't want the comic to be quite so obviously 3D and I wouldn't want anyone to be like - "Hey, I know that pose - it's from pose set ____" lol and 2) most of the poses I have are just too "stiff". Getting natural looking poses is crazy hard - finding them in the exact type of pose I need is even harder. And now that my Smart Content isn't working, I have to dig through folder after folder in my Content Libary trying to find exactly the right pose as a "base" that I can then tweak to make it more unique and look more natural looking (though I'm probably failing in that aspect lol But I'm trying!).


    Then getting the lighting, camera angles, and environments to "gel" with the character and emotion that I'm trying to portray... oy. Yeah, aside from Script Writing, the scene setup seems to be the second longest part of the process for me.


    I'm really enjoying the process though. It's quite some work, but also SO FUN to see things coming together! :D


    I should have a couple pages to show you guys soon - as I really want your feedback on the art style before I get too far into rendering out the scenes. I want to render out the first page or two and get it put together and then get you guys' eyes on it to see if it needs any changes (or to see if the art style is even working or not).
     

     

  • 3Diva3Diva Posts: 11,018
    edited September 2020
    duckbomb said:

    So, with my most recent comic, I decided to do something a little weird...  This is a Choose Your Own Adventure style comic, where every few pages I post up a page like the last one here that presents a bit of a cliffhanger to my supporters on Patreon.  I'll then post up the same page, complete with options on how to proceed, and based on the results of the vote we'll move forward with the story.  As you can see, I've interjected a bunch of small bread crumbs all over the place for them to explore, if they end up wanting to, and ultimately the culmination of all of these votes will decide how the comic ends.  It's an interesting exercise, because I really had to pre-plan for a bunch of possibilities, but ensure none of my options take the story outside of where I want to go with it at a general level.

    From a technical standpoint, I tried experimenting with different sizes and shapes of panels this time.  Typically, things are a little... rectangular...  but I thought I'd try to interject some visual flair.  I'm not certain I love it, but I did learn that any panel shape other than rectangle really adds to the complexity when dealing with masks and such... 

     

    3Diva said:

    After much testing, experimenting with different shaders, trying different extreme render settings, a huge variety of weird HDRIs both purchased and hand made, and lots and lots of tweaking, and refining, I'm pretty sure I've nailed down the render style that I want to go with for my comic. Here are some random scenes I rendered in the render style that I want to go with. Most of these scenes have nothing to do with my comic, but I wanted to just show a variety of scenes in the render style so that I can get a good handle on if it's going to be viable for a wide range of scenes that I'll need for my comic.

    Feedback is welcome - as I might be "too close" to it to see if there are any real issues with it. But barring any major problems with the style, I'll probably go with it as I really like it! lol Hopefully there aren't any real issue with it though! :D

    Wow!  How did you produce this look?  I want something like this for my next comic!   I'm working on one right  now but style is totally different...but really like this for a more comical comic I'm doing. 

    About a year of work and experimenting. But sadly, it's a look that can't be achieved right now with the current version of Daz Studio (they made some changes to Daz Studio and some of the Iray Shader Bricks - I think that's what they're called - and the shader presets I had developed for that NPR style look very different now in the newer version of Daz Studio). It's unfortunate, because, as I said, I had spent a year (more now) on developing it as a product I was going to release for the Daz3D store.

    I'm kind of hoping that the new shader presets and render settings I've come up with might eventually be viable for an NPR product though. *crosses fingers*

    Post edited by 3Diva on
  • 3Diva3Diva Posts: 11,018

    So after a couple of false starts, I've gotten a new comic book started. I'm calling it Transylvania County. Rendered using the sketchy toon shader, with post work in Photoshop.  Thanks to MagicJava for the Kirby Krackle:

     

    hahah This is very cool! I really like the "old school" comic vibe. The humour is so cute too! Awesome work!

  • 3Diva3Diva Posts: 11,018

    Lots of great tips and lovely work here.  I have a comic I"d love to share with you all.  I've been developing the style for awhile.   I hope  it is  one of the best looking 3d/CG comics out there...but seeing some of you alls GREAT work that is a hard bar to pass.  :)  Thank you for the inspiration.  

    The style looks pretty neat - I'd probably go with that "outline" look that you managed to achieve in some of the scenes. I like the black outlines - it helps the figures "pop" and make it look a bit more like comic art. I think this is a really good start! I'm looking forward to seeing your work developing!

  • So after a couple of false starts, I've gotten a new comic book started. I'm calling it Transylvania County. Rendered using the sketchy toon shader, with post work in Photoshop.  Thanks to MagicJava for the Kirby Krackle:

     

    Okay, you have absolutely hidden the 3D origins of this scene. I'm honestly AMAZED at how you master a really cool, primitive vibe (I hope you take that as the compliment I intend it to be). This is really cool! And the dialogue? HAH HAH HAH! So over-the-top! (Did I catch a reference to Perry the Platypus, or am I projecting?) Thyis is remarkably fun, and you had the PERFECT payoff as a joke. Honestly, you really achieved a lot in just three pages. The storytelling is perfect. You start with an establishing shot to show us the lab, then move right in on the main characters. You then go teeny-tiny for the rest of the page, and then WHAM us in the face with a full-pager for the second page. And the pay-off? HAH! Brilliant.

    This is the best 3D comic I've seen in about 2 months. BRAVO.

  • 3Diva said:

    @duckbomb @FirstBastion Thank you so much for the awesome comments! I'm really glad you like the new style. :D I'm REALLY excited about the new style and the new script. I'm having fun putting together the first few scenes. It's a SLOW process, but dang it's fun seeing the story coming to life as I work on the scenes and start rendering out the first few panels.


    The slowest process for me right now is setting up the scenes. I can't really use "canned" poses as 1) I don't want the comic to be quite so obviously 3D and I wouldn't want anyone to be like - "Hey, I know that pose - it's from pose set ____" lol and 2) most of the poses I have are just too "stiff". Getting natural looking poses is crazy hard - finding them in the exact type of pose I need is even harder. And now that my Smart Content isn't working, I have to dig through folder after folder in my Content Libary trying to find exactly the right pose as a "base" that I can then tweak to make it more unique and look more natural looking (though I'm probably failing in that aspect lol But I'm trying!).


    Then getting the lighting, camera angles, and environments to "gel" with the character and emotion that I'm trying to portray... oy. Yeah, aside from Script Writing, the scene setup seems to be the second longest part of the process for me. I'm really enjoying the process though. It's quite some work, but also SO FUN to see things coming together! :D I should have a couple pages to show you guys soon - as I really want your feedback on the art style before I get too far into rendering out the scenes. I want to render out the first page or two and get it put together and then get you guys' eyes on it to see if it needs any changes (or to see if the art style is even working or not).

    BTW: I'm liking your new style, too. I've just been swamped with work and an illustration job, so I've been mostly silent around here for a few weeks.

  • 3Diva said:

     

    hahah This is very cool! I really like the "old school" comic vibe. The humour is so cute too! Awesome work!

    Thank you!

     

    Good luck with getting the new shader.  I envy you, I do NOT have the patience to write script.

  • edited September 2020

     

    Okay, you have absolutely hidden the 3D origins of this scene. I'm honestly AMAZED at how you master a really cool, primitive vibe (I hope you take that as the compliment I intend it to be). This is really cool! And the dialogue? HAH HAH HAH! So over-the-top! (Did I catch a reference to Perry the Platypus, or am I projecting?) Thyis is remarkably fun, and you had the PERFECT payoff as a joke. Honestly, you really achieved a lot in just three pages. The storytelling is perfect. You start with an establishing shot to show us the lab, then move right in on the main characters. You then go teeny-tiny for the rest of the page, and then WHAM us in the face with a full-pager for the second page. And the pay-off? HAH! Brilliant.

    This is the best 3D comic I've seen in about 2 months. BRAVO.

    Thank you.  Not intentionally a Perry reference, but given that there's a new Phineas and Ferb movie coming out, that's probably what planted the word "platypus" in my head.

    Post edited by jconder676_652d576f03 on
  • 3Diva said:

    If you notice - her shape and style has changed too. Some of the morphs I originally used for her were on a drive that failed. It made me have to rework her shape, so I thought I'd go a tad less stylized with her this time. I think she looks a little older too, which is probably good since some of the story changes added some more "adult-ish"/more mature types of scenes to the script.

    Very cool being able to control the rimlight color the way you are. It's not hard to imagine how that ability could be used creatively in a million different ways.

    The evolution of your character makes me think of one of the main advantages of a 3D workflow. When you change the shape, textures, etc. on a character, it is relatively easy to make those changes rippple in backwards time. Of course you have to re-render, but opening up the saved scenes, applying the new morph or whatever, starting the render and walking away to grab a coffee isn't all that bad!

    - Greg

  • I've just started playing around with making some NPR shader networks in Blender. Material conversion for the DS->Blender bridges is an obvious weakpoint, but it doesn't matter so much in this case. Once your in Blender, there's some really interesting animating that can be done rather simply using the modifiers.

    Anyway, the shader editor functions very nicely as well (Shader Mixer is one area that I wish received a little more love in DS). Here's a quick screencap of the beginnings of my shader network in Blender:

    There is still much to do and explore. What you see here is updated in pretty much real time which makes dev so much easier/faster, and this doesn't even utilize Freestyle yet. Don't be afraid to dip your toes in - the water is great!

    - Greg

  • 3Diva3Diva Posts: 11,018

     

     

    3Diva said:

    @duckbomb @FirstBastion Thank you so much for the awesome comments! I'm really glad you like the new style. :D I'm REALLY excited about the new style and the new script. I'm having fun putting together the first few scenes. It's a SLOW process, but dang it's fun seeing the story coming to life as I work on the scenes and start rendering out the first few panels.


    The slowest process for me right now is setting up the scenes. I can't really use "canned" poses as 1) I don't want the comic to be quite so obviously 3D and I wouldn't want anyone to be like - "Hey, I know that pose - it's from pose set ____" lol and 2) most of the poses I have are just too "stiff". Getting natural looking poses is crazy hard - finding them in the exact type of pose I need is even harder. And now that my Smart Content isn't working, I have to dig through folder after folder in my Content Libary trying to find exactly the right pose as a "base" that I can then tweak to make it more unique and look more natural looking (though I'm probably failing in that aspect lol But I'm trying!).


    Then getting the lighting, camera angles, and environments to "gel" with the character and emotion that I'm trying to portray... oy. Yeah, aside from Script Writing, the scene setup seems to be the second longest part of the process for me. I'm really enjoying the process though. It's quite some work, but also SO FUN to see things coming together! :D I should have a couple pages to show you guys soon - as I really want your feedback on the art style before I get too far into rendering out the scenes. I want to render out the first page or two and get it put together and then get you guys' eyes on it to see if it needs any changes (or to see if the art style is even working or not).

    BTW: I'm liking your new style, too. I've just been swamped with work and an illustration job, so I've been mostly silent around here for a few weeks.

    I'm really glad you like the style too. :D I'm hoping that it will be viable for my comic! I'm working on page two now, once the first two pages are done I'll post them and I would be happy to get feedback from everyone on them.

  • 3Diva3Diva Posts: 11,018
    edited September 2020
    3Diva said:

    If you notice - her shape and style has changed too. Some of the morphs I originally used for her were on a drive that failed. It made me have to rework her shape, so I thought I'd go a tad less stylized with her this time. I think she looks a little older too, which is probably good since some of the story changes added some more "adult-ish"/more mature types of scenes to the script.

    Very cool being able to control the rimlight color the way you are. It's not hard to imagine how that ability could be used creatively in a million different ways.

    The evolution of your character makes me think of one of the main advantages of a 3D workflow. When you change the shape, textures, etc. on a character, it is relatively easy to make those changes rippple in backwards time. Of course you have to re-render, but opening up the saved scenes, applying the new morph or whatever, starting the render and walking away to grab a coffee isn't all that bad!

    - Greg

    I'm really excited about the rim lighting possibilities. I'm worried that it might be a bit "much" for every panel though. I hope once I have the first two pages done we'll be able to get a better idea on if the style will work for an entire comic (or series of comics *crosses fingers*) or not.

    I totally agree about the advantages of the 3D workflow for comics too. It's SO MUCH easier to go back and make changes if needed than with traditional comics. As long as you save every scene and keep everything labled correctly, it's so easy to go back and make adjustments and rerender the scene. 

    I'm finding that making sure that my renders are labelled EXACTLY the same as my scenes and scene subsets makes things much easier. I find that even if I just change the camera angle or make some other subtle changes, saving it with a new scene name that matches exactly the name of the render is extremely helpful and can save a lot of time later. I may end up liking "version a" better than "version b" but wanted to make one small adjustment to "a", going back and finding that exact scene is WAY easy when I've labelled the scene with the exact same name as what I named the render.

    Post edited by 3Diva on
  • 3Diva3Diva Posts: 11,018

    I've just started playing around with making some NPR shader networks in Blender. Material conversion for the DS->Blender bridges is an obvious weakpoint, but it doesn't matter so much in this case. Once your in Blender, there's some really interesting animating that can be done rather simply using the modifiers.

    Anyway, the shader editor functions very nicely as well (Shader Mixer is one area that I wish received a little more love in DS). Here's a quick screencap of the beginnings of my shader network in Blender:

    There is still much to do and explore. What you see here is updated in pretty much real time which makes dev so much easier/faster, and this doesn't even utilize Freestyle yet. Don't be afraid to dip your toes in - the water is great!

    - Greg

    Oh man! Blender NPR looks really fun! I WISH I had more time in the day to learn Blender. With everything I'm working on, I don't have nearly the time I want to spend on learning how to use Blender. Hopefully one of these days things will slow down a bit and I'll be able to dive into it. I've seen some EXTREMELY cool stuff being done in Blender and it has me excited to learn it (hopefully not TOO FAR in the future lol).

  • 3Diva3Diva Posts: 11,018
    edited September 2020

    I just saw an ad for a Master Class on scriptwriting with the teacher being R.L. Stine (Goosebumps author). He said that when he does an outline for a story he ALWAYS starts with the end (Edit: I just watched the "preview" of the class and he actually says that he "generally" starts with the ending and that SOMETIMES that's not possible, but whenever possible, start with the ending). Writing the ending first. That way he can "spend the rest of the time fooling the reader". lol I really think that's a brilliant way to go (not exactly the "fooling the reader" part, but just starting with the ending). Once you have the ending down, it just makes everything else flow to that ending much more smoothly with more harmony and cohesion. It also allows you to put in some nice foreshadowing and other subtle hints that upon second reading would take on whole new meanings or end up being more poignant. Starting at the end/establishing the end first, makes a whole lot of sense.

    Post edited by 3Diva on
  • 3Diva said:
    3Diva said:

    If you notice - her shape and style has changed too. Some of the morphs I originally used for her were on a drive that failed. It made me have to rework her shape, so I thought I'd go a tad less stylized with her this time. I think she looks a little older too, which is probably good since some of the story changes added some more "adult-ish"/more mature types of scenes to the script.

    Very cool being able to control the rimlight color the way you are. It's not hard to imagine how that ability could be used creatively in a million different ways.

    The evolution of your character makes me think of one of the main advantages of a 3D workflow. When you change the shape, textures, etc. on a character, it is relatively easy to make those changes rippple in backwards time. Of course you have to re-render, but opening up the saved scenes, applying the new morph or whatever, starting the render and walking away to grab a coffee isn't all that bad!

    - Greg

    I'm really excited about the rim lighting possibilities. I'm worried that it might be a bit "much" for every panel though. I hope once I have the first two pages done we'll be able to get a better idea on if the style will work for an entire comic (or series of comics *crosses fingers*) or not.

    I totally agree about the advantages of the 3D workflow for comics too. It's SO MUCH easier to go back and make changes if needed than with traditional comics. As long as you save every scene and keep everything labled correctly, it's so easy to go back and make adjustments and rerender the scene. 

    I'm finding that making sure that my renders are labelled EXACTLY the same as my scenes and scene subsets makes things much easier. I find that even if I just change the camera angle or make some other subtle changes, saving it with a new scene name that matches exactly the name of the render is extremely helpful and can save a lot of time later. I may end up liking "version a" better than "version b" but wanted to make one small adjustment to "a", going back and finding that exact scene is WAY easy when I've labelled the scene with the exact same name as what I named the render.

    I'm certain that your organization and consistent file naming conventions will pay off. Similar concepts have played a huge role in the development of my NPR algos over the years.

    - Greg

  •  

    Okay, you have absolutely hidden the 3D origins of this scene. I'm honestly AMAZED at how you master a really cool, primitive vibe (I hope you take that as the compliment I intend it to be). This is really cool! And the dialogue? HAH HAH HAH! So over-the-top! (Did I catch a reference to Perry the Platypus, or am I projecting?) Thyis is remarkably fun, and you had the PERFECT payoff as a joke. Honestly, you really achieved a lot in just three pages. The storytelling is perfect. You start with an establishing shot to show us the lab, then move right in on the main characters. You then go teeny-tiny for the rest of the page, and then WHAM us in the face with a full-pager for the second page. And the pay-off? HAH! Brilliant.

    This is the best 3D comic I've seen in about 2 months. BRAVO.

    Thank you.  Not intentionally a Perry reference, but given that there's a new Phineas and Ferb movie coming out, that's probably what planted the word "platypus" in my head.

    The movie is already out, and it's great. Easily as good as anything they did back when the show was first on. Definitely worth watching! (Can't swear Disney+ is worth subscribing to, but that one movie is definitely good.)

  • 3Diva said:
    3Diva said:

    If you notice - her shape and style has changed too. Some of the morphs I originally used for her were on a drive that failed. It made me have to rework her shape, so I thought I'd go a tad less stylized with her this time. I think she looks a little older too, which is probably good since some of the story changes added some more "adult-ish"/more mature types of scenes to the script.

    Very cool being able to control the rimlight color the way you are. It's not hard to imagine how that ability could be used creatively in a million different ways.

    The evolution of your character makes me think of one of the main advantages of a 3D workflow. When you change the shape, textures, etc. on a character, it is relatively easy to make those changes rippple in backwards time. Of course you have to re-render, but opening up the saved scenes, applying the new morph or whatever, starting the render and walking away to grab a coffee isn't all that bad!

    - Greg

    I'm really excited about the rim lighting possibilities. I'm worried that it might be a bit "much" for every panel though. I hope once I have the first two pages done we'll be able to get a better idea on if the style will work for an entire comic (or series of comics *crosses fingers*) or not.

    I totally agree about the advantages of the 3D workflow for comics too. It's SO MUCH easier to go back and make changes if needed than with traditional comics. As long as you save every scene and keep everything labled correctly, it's so easy to go back and make adjustments and rerender the scene. 

    I'm finding that making sure that my renders are labelled EXACTLY the same as my scenes and scene subsets makes things much easier. I find that even if I just change the camera angle or make some other subtle changes, saving it with a new scene name that matches exactly the name of the render is extremely helpful and can save a lot of time later. I may end up liking "version a" better than "version b" but wanted to make one small adjustment to "a", going back and finding that exact scene is WAY easy when I've labelled the scene with the exact same name as what I named the render.

    I'm certain that your organization and consistent file naming conventions will pay off. Similar concepts have played a huge role in the development of my NPR algos over the years.

    - Greg

    In my own work with Poser Pro 11, I've found that consistent file names are VITAL to getting things done. In my case, I need to include settings for:

    • Figure/scene identifier (name and figure type if it's not M4 or V4)
    • Render pass (black, gray, outline or an alternate pass, such as black2, gray-expanded, and so forth)
    • Camera name (getting less important, since I am now consistently using the Aux camera)
    • Geometric Edge setting (universal line thickness)
    • Threshold setting (how Poser interprets the deepness of the shadows)
    • Date (later dates are newer versions)

    So, a file name might look like this:  Claire SP3 - Black AuxCam ge=033 th=045 (09-25-2020)

    The setting for the Geometric Edge and the Threshold require explaining. You see, in Poser there is a decimal point in the name, but I don't wnat to include it in the file name (or in the pre-set that I have to the library) because it throws off the search and file system. So, I include the leading zero (or number) and drop the decimal. For example:

    • ge 0.33 = 033
    • ge 1.25 = 125
    • th 0.45 = 045

     

    The GE and TH settings are VERY important because they completely change the look of an illustration. A threshold setting of 025 can have tiny shadows, whereas the exact same illustration (no changes to lighting or anything else) with a threshold of 090 could have huge shadows that cover most of the figure.

    Sorry for not posting examples, but I'm not at my computer where I can quickly render you a few examples.

     

    But back to naming files. I use names like those above to save my custom light sets to the Poser Library, and then I also use those names to export the rendered image. By matching these names (which Clip Studio Paint imports as layers), I can easily go back to a panel and duplicate the necessary settings needed to rerender the scene. (Or, as is the case recently, rerender a single prop to go in the scene – I decided to add a badge to a figure and used this info to just render that item and put it seamlessly into the scene).

  • 3Diva3Diva Posts: 11,018
    edited September 2020

    @algovincian @mmitchell_houston Yeah, I'm finding that naming conventions and precision across render names and scene names is hugely important to my workflow. My naming convention is usually Comic Name, then Page Number, Panel Number, Render Setting, Shader Setting, then Variation (as I tend to do several variations of the same panel - usually shooting it from a couple of different camera angles and/or tweaking the expressions a little bit). I save the scene with a name that reflects the different variations and make sure to have the scene named exactly the same as the render's name. Plus adding the details of the Render Setting and Shader Preset I used helps me to experiment as I go to see which combos of the two give the scene the look I'm after. Including all that info (abbreviated, of course) in the name of the scenes and the name of the renders has been a MASSIVE time saver.

    Post edited by 3Diva on
  • 3Diva3Diva Posts: 11,018

    I'd love some eyes on these - here are the first two pages of my comic (hopefully). The art style is something I'm most curious about whether it works or not. But, of course, you can also give feedback on any other aspect of it as well, if you want. I'd be happy to hear you guy's thoughts on it and if you think it's something I should move forward with or not. :) Personally, I think the style is pretty cool! lol But I may be "too close" to it to be objective. :P

  • algovincianalgovincian Posts: 2,333
    edited September 2020

    I'm on my phone at the moment, but what I see here is excellent! I especially enjoyed the lighting change between indoors/outside you were able to pull off. As I've mentioned before, I like the base style for your balloons. I also like how you differentiate between her inner monologue and general narration/captioning, and the choices you've made for depicting impact and sound effects.

    All of these elements work together to make for a great style and I'm looking forward to reading more of your story - great job!

    - Greg

    ETA: After having a chance to check it out on a larger display, several additional things stood out to me:

    1. the details on her hair look great in both settings

    2. the motion blur effect on his staff is effective (Morgan has always been one of my favorites)

    3. love the way that you managed to make your figures separated from the BG enough to make them standout, but not so much that they appear disconnected from the environment

    4. her expressions work

    The last 2 are definitely things that I'm still wrestling with in my own work, and I feel they're crucial. Can't wait to read more and see where the story goes. I hope you continue to post updates!

     

    Post edited by algovincian on
  • Continuing to look at it some more, I think your decision to go with a style that doesn't rely on a black (or other color) outline on everything really allows you to get more detailed. This is something that I struggle with endlessly. It also means that the images will survive the re-sizing that will inevitably take place since the whole idea of anything being "pixel perfect" is dead these days.

    It looks really good, Diva.

    - Greg

  • FirstBastionFirstBastion Posts: 5,424
    edited September 2020

    I like your panels alot @3Diva.  The art style is crisp and vibrant. The expressions fit the dialogue and the poses look quite natural. All thumb up. We know its 3D but doesn't look it. It has that "arty" quality. Definitely worth moving forward with. Two pages  and I alreay want to know more about her story and that's a good sign.

    Little things that I'll point out are just stuff I noticed, but I'm mentioning these as personal preferences, and editing choices, which in the end are entirely subjective. This is your comic  and you have your own unique way of telling the story. So I'm mentioning them as supportive suggestions. 

    Way too many expository caption this early on in the story. Exposition is best when offered sparsely. I can see why you want to add it to help us understand her motivations and her place in the world. It's important to "SHOW DON'T TELL"  Sometimes a few choice words adds more than a lot of straight information.  There will be time to add the info later.

    Many of the panels seem to be mid shots, it would be nice to see more variety with the camera choices,  extreme closeups for example or reaction reversal shots, that variety engages the reader pulling them closer to the visuals and emotions. For example the 3 panels top of the second page, all three were from the same angle; to add a bit of variation, one panel could have the  camera looking down on the scene from the ceiling giving a little more spatial information of the training space which would tell us a bit about the Sensai, Mr. Hajime.  Again just a suggestion.

    Given the wide sunset shot, a little more yellow hue washing in from the right side when she is sitting on the front stoop could tie the panels together.

    Not sure about the purple captions with the dotted white line choice for her inner thoughts. Differentiating from the standard caption is good.  Maybe a more subtle color?

    It all look very crisp and professional. Give us more.

    Post edited by FirstBastion on
  • 3Diva3Diva Posts: 11,018

    I'm on my phone at the moment, but what I see here is excellent! I especially enjoyed the lighting change between indoors/outside you were able to pull off. As I've mentioned before, I like the base style for your balloons. I also like how you differentiate between her inner monologue and general narration/captioning, and the choices you've made for depicting impact and sound effects.

    All of these elements work together to make for a great style and I'm looking forward to reading more of your story - great job!

    - Greg

    ETA: After having a chance to check it out on a larger display, several additional things stood out to me:

    1. the details on her hair look great in both settings

    2. the motion blur effect on his staff is effective (Morgan has always been one of my favorites)

    3. love the way that you managed to make your figures separated from the BG enough to make them standout, but not so much that they appear disconnected from the environment

    4. her expressions work

    The last 2 are definitely things that I'm still wrestling with in my own work, and I feel they're crucial. Can't wait to read more and see where the story goes. I hope you continue to post updates!

     

    Thank you so much for the great feedback, Greg! I really appreciate it! :)

    The motion blur is something I'm kind of proud of since it's not easy to do. I had to isolate the "moving" object in PS, make copies of it, lighten the copies leading "up to" the original and then give one of the copies a motion blur and lay it over the top of the others. I think it came out nicely, but it's a pain in the tushy to do. lol I don't think I'll be writing in too many blur effects in the future, as it's a pain to do. lol

    I'm not sure what you mean by "Morgan" being one of your favorites? I don't know who Morgan is (Google wasn't very helpful lol).

    The figures standing out from the background a little bit was tough too - I tried quite a few things. What I settled on was creating background shaders that added not only my NPR shader presets but also added a subtle Emission. This was a way to lighten the background just slightly so that the figures are a little bit darker and pop out a bit but not so much that, as you said, doesn't completely "disconnect" them from the environment (at least I hope that's the result lol). The Emission slows down rendering a little, but to me, the end result is worth the longer wait on the render.

    The expressions - those were FUN! lol When I was setting up the scene for that big fourth panel, I was cracking up laughing SO HARD! Her expression was just too funny! lol In traditional comics the expressions are usually quite "over the top" so I'm trying to push the expressions quite a bit farther than what I would normally do for a render. Real, every day, people tend to show very subtle expressions (it's one of the reasons miscommunication is so prevalent, imo), but expressions and body language in comics usually should be anything but "subtle". So I'm trying to make sure that the body language and expressions are pushed farther. lol Mixing various different expressions can create a lot of fun and funny reactions. I find myself dialling in Pirate Expressive by Neikdian fairly frequently because those expressions are not subtle. ;) Mixing those with other expressions can push them farther and create some fun expressions, imo. I've got my eye on their Twosret Expressive set as well, as that one looks like it might be fun to mix too. :)

    Thank you again for the sweet comments and great feedback! :D

  • 3Diva3Diva Posts: 11,018
    edited September 2020

     

    Way too many expository caption this early on in the story. Exposition is best when offered sparsely. I can see why you want to add it to help us understand her motivations and her place in the world. It's important to "SHOW DON'T TELL"  Sometimes a few choice words adds more than a lot of straight information.  There will be time to add the info later.

    It's funny you mentioned that, it was something I was worried about too. I wondered if it was too much information for those two main inner dialogue panels. But someone else I showed it to really liked that part a lot. They pointed to those two exposition panels and said that those were their favorite parts because it felt "meaty" and gave you a better understanding of who she is. So I'm a bit torn on if it's "too much" or if it's good the way it is. If I could get some more feedback from a couple of other people on it, that would be great. So far I have one saying "too much" and another that says they loved all the info. So I'm a bit torn on it.

    I did wonder how best to present a bit of her "back story" without spending too much time on it - as her story with Mr. Hajime really isn't the story. I don't want to spend much time on it as that part of her life is the past, but I wanted an explanation on why she can fight and why she can do what she can do. Explaining that she spent 3 years training without dragging it out for pages seamed like the way to go - because there is a BIG story to tell. But if it's too much exposition I might have to rethink it. If I can get some more opinions on it, that would be great! :D That way I can decide if I should keep it or change it. If it's too much exposition or if it's offputting to people I would rather know now than later. lol

     

    Many of the panels seem to be mid shots, it would be nice to see more variety with the camera choices,  extreme closeups for example or reaction reversal shots, that variety engages the reader pulling them closer to the visuals and emotions. For example the 3 panels top of the second page, all three were from the same angle; to add a bit of variation, one panel could have the  camera looking down on the scene from the ceiling giving a little more spatial information of the training space which would tell us a bit about the Sensai, Mr. Hajime.  Again just a suggestion.

    Thank you for the suggestions. I definitely don't want to bore the reader, so I will try to keep in mind to add a​ bit more variety to the camera angles and camera distances. I thought I had done a decent job of doing different angles and distances, but I suppose I can try to push it farther. :)

    Not sure about the purple captions with the dotted white line choice for her inner thoughts. Differentiating from the standard caption is good.  Maybe a more subtle color?

    I plan on having a couple of the other main characters also have an inner dialogue that the reader can "hear", so I wanted to pick a distinctive color for each character. But perhaps the color is too vibrant? Or maybe the dialogue boxes should be black text with black dotted outlines but keep the background of the boxes colored?

     

    I like your panels alot @3Diva.  The art style is crisp and vibrant. The expressions fit the dialogue and the poses look quite natural. All thumb up. We know its 3D but doesn't look it. It has that "arty" quality. Definitely worth moving forward with. Two pages  and I alreay want to know more about her story and that's a good sign.

    *snip*

    It all look very crisp and professional. Give us more.

    Thank you so much @FirstBastion! I'm really glad you like the art style and that it's not "obviously 3D" and has an "arty" quality, like you said - as that is what I was aiming for. :) I'm really happy to hear that it comes across like that!

    I really appreciate the great feedback! You've given me a lot to think about! :)

    Oh and congratulations on the release of your One Bedroom Apartment! It looks AWESOME! I love that you included the apartment hallway too. That was a great idea and a nice addition to the set! I also like that it's "tidy" but still "lived in" - like the pillows on the couch are slightly dishevelled and the bed isn't made and the pots and containers in the kitchen aren't PERFECTLY stacked and stuff. Those subtle touches add some nice realism! Excellent work! :)

    Post edited by 3Diva on
  • 3Diva said:

    I'm not sure what you mean by "Morgan" being one of your favorites? I don't know who Morgan is (Google wasn't very helpful lol).

    Morgan/Aikido:

    - Greg

  • 3Diva3Diva Posts: 11,018
    3Diva said:

    I'm not sure what you mean by "Morgan" being one of your favorites? I don't know who Morgan is (Google wasn't very helpful lol).

    Morgan/Aikido:

    - Greg

    Oh wow, I really liked that clip! Very cool life philosophies being presented! I think I had stopped watching The Walking Dead after the first couple of seasons. It was a bit "too much" for me. lol I like to binge-watch shows, and that show is crazy stressful to watch, especially if you binge-watch episode after episode like I like to do with shows. lol So I had to nope it and stop watching it. It's extremely good story-telling though. Really engaging and makes you care about the characters and what happens to them.

  • Those pages look awesome!  I'm super strapped for time, and it seems I'm already late to the party so I have to read the comments, and the pages, and catch up, but they look REALLY cool from a very quick, cursory glance.  To me, that's actually a very good indication of quality.  SInce readers aren't going to settle in to read something simply to critique it, but to enjoy it, having an artistic hook right out of the gate such as you obviuosly have here is a really, really great start!

    I look forward to diving in when I have a minute to sit at my computer uninterrupted!

  • 3Diva said:

     

     I can see why you want to add it to help us understand her motivations and her place in the world.

    It's funny you mentioned that, it was something I was worried about too. I wondered if it was too much information for those two main inner dialogue panels. But someone else I showed it to really liked that part a lot. They pointed to those two exposition panels and said that those were their favorite parts because it felt "meaty" and gave you a better understanding of who she is. So I'm a bit torn on if it's "too much" or if it's good the way it is.

    It really is a writing style choice. Just like you choose your art style,  you develop and choose your writing style for the comicbook. There is no right or wrong. You want to find that balance of just the right amount of information so the reader is with you on the journey. Tell the story the way you want. Your page panels were flowing at a good pace with the clean dialogue, actions and sound fx, up to that point. So don't be torn. Having us understand her desire for a home is important going forward.  But to help the page flow you might consider one less caption, or one additional panel. Either option could work. You can also leave it as is. For now. You may decide to revisit the pages after you have more of the story pages completed. Stuff usually changes as the process continues. First pages usually get redrawn after coming to the end of the book.

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