Recently, wonderful artist and sometimes Waiting on the Trade co-host Kathryn Prince (aka Red Phacelia) participated in a Project Art Cred experiment examining how different artists interpret the same comic script. Because I’m a process nerd, I asked Kat to walk y’all through her page creation process. I’ll let her take it from here.
The process of making a comic can take a long time, and that is largely due to the art, not the writing. This week I’m writing a guest post to give you an idea of what goes into illustrating a comic page. This particular comic page came about as a challenge to artists posted by Kieron Gillen in his weekly newsletter.
The premise of the challenge was that the meaning of a story changes dramatically based on how it is illustrated. Gillen wrote a single-page script, and over forty different artists submitted pages. (If you’d like to see all of them, check out this Twitter thread).
As the Twitter-sphere devolves into a series of Russian bots and pissed-off Star Wars fans, comics creators are trying something new. Or old? Technology goes in circles; sometimes it’s hard to keep track.
Rather than focusing on social media outreach, in which the aforementioned bots and villains can steer things off track, a number of creators are putting out old-school email newsletters. These newsletters, of course, promote the creators’ new books, but they also contain book recommendations, recipes, puns, slice of life stories, and a whole bunch of additional informative content. In short, they are wonderful, and I am loving them.
In the hopes of convincing these creators that their newsletters are entirely worth the time and effort put into them, I’m going to gush about them here. Hopefully, my gushing will convince you to sign up for these newsletters (or your favorite creator’s newsletter) as well.
Like many comics readers, I hope to one day publish my own comics. So I devour articles about process, and when I find a writer who goes deep talking about scripting, writer-artist relationships, or economics, I take note.
I’ve assembled the list below for those just starting to read about making comics. These five writers are, in my opinion, the best at talking process. They are not my five favorite writers period, though they’re all very good (and some would make that list). But they’re the ones who have the most to share about the act of writing, or at least the most patience to deal with those of us on the Internet who want to learn.