Scott Johnson (penguinzero) wrote,
Scott Johnson

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24 Hours: a Retrospective

Well, in response to some encouragement I've recieved (though I think ohimesamamama and especially my dear twin condotierre may be just a teensy bit biased), I've decided to put my 24-hour comic on line for all to cringe at. I haven't yet made web pages for them, but in the interim, you can go straight to the image files. The first is at The others are comic2.jpg, comic3.jpg, and so on up to comic24.jpg. Warning: those of you with actual art training or experience may want to keep something on hand in case of eyeball bleeding.

Some things I've learned from this experiment:

  • Two fine-tip pens are not enough to ink twenty-four pages of comics, even really simple ones. This goes double if you have a close-up, full-body shot of a character wearing all black.
  • Under time pressure, I tend to create really surreal plotlines. (As opposed to the mildly surreal ones I create when under no deadline.)
  • I also tend to steal humor from unusual sources. Referenced in this comic: The Big O, The Secret of Monkey Island, and Sam and Max (mostly the comic, not the video game). And those are just the ones I remember offhand.
  • Apparently I'm not the only one with fond memories of Sam and Max. Inspired by my use of them, I later tried to track down the comic (which I had as a kid, but have lost track of). Found two copies on eBay, both going for about $150.
  • My art needs, well, a lot of work. Probably my worst page is page 10. It was supposed to be a view of the game board from a few pages back, only charred into a smoldering mess, with a skittering trail of ashes where the girl's game piece had been launched away. What it ended up as was the final thing convincing me I needed to get to bed.
  • On the other hand, the first panel on page 21 is probably my favorite one in the whole comic, and the only one I probably wouldn't change much even if I woke up tomorrow morning with the skill of Will Eisner, Carl Barks, Osamu Tezuka, and Jack Kirby all rolled up into one gigantic monstrous four-headed beast of art. I somehow think I just nailed how a big, smug, evil carnivorous block of cheese would look after eating two mice that might be key to saving the world.
  • Laying out panels is actually kind of fun and interesting -- it gets me thinking about the flow of the whole page.
  • On the other hand, even with a ruler's help, I still can't seem to get the panel shapes regular or consistent.
  • I really can focus on something for hours at a stretch, not noticing where the time's going, even if it's hard work. And, related to that:
  • Working hard to create something can, in fact, be fun. I'd never entirely lost sight of that, but I'd to a certain extent lost confidence in my ability to do it, faced with many demands on my time and the distractions of the web, video games, the many books I want to read, etc. But I largely skipped those while working on this, barring occasional brief breaks, and I found I was having almost as good a time as I would with the more immediate recreation -- and getting more useful things done, too.

Anyway. 24 pages, 23 hours and 18 minutes. Not bad, from that perspective at least. Any and all criticism is welcome, though being specific is preferred -- 'You did X and Y wrong, and page Z is terrible for it,' or even 'Q isn't too bad -- try to focus on that in the future.'

Okay, enough rambling.
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