Comic Talk, Tips and Tricks

1st page of a webcomic, What's the best way to start a webcomic?
Viceroy at 1:20PM, Dec. 28, 2010
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any tips for the first page of a webcomic?
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:42PM
AshenSkye at 2:14PM, Dec. 28, 2010
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I hear that a lot of readers are tired of a wall-of-text approach to telling the prologue or the comic setting. So… don't start with a wall of text and go straight to character interaction and let the readers learn along the way?
Cogito eggo sum. I think, therefore, I am a waffle!
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:02AM
skoolmunkee at 3:45PM, Dec. 28, 2010
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Depends on the type of comic you're doing. If it's joke-a-day or journal or that sort, don't make the first page “hey welcome to my webcomic!” Just do a normal comic.

If it's a story-based one, as AshenSkye says, don't start with a wall of text, boring narration, or any kind of exposition. If you really feel like readers need that info before they can understand anything, then you're doing it wrong. Story comics should really start further into a story than the ‘beginning’, for a lot of reasons. Story comics really need to start off with a bang to get people invested in them.

People also don't seem to like it if the first few pages are character bios, maps, designs, or other extras. That stuff should go in a separate place and not impede people from just starting to read the comic.
  IT'S OLD BATMAN
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:44PM
Genejoke at 4:23PM, Dec. 28, 2010
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A cover or title image of some sort? If you feel the need to set the scene with text have some great art to accompany it.

Whatever you do it needs to set the comic up. if it is a gag a day make them laugh, if it's some epic story capture the readers imagination with a cover or an intriguing image and a small amount of text.

personally I don't like to see a comic that begins with a single page, it isn't enough to form an opinion with, I think it best to start when you have at least 5 story/gag pages ready to go.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:33PM
Beelzy at 11:04PM, Dec. 29, 2010
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AshenSkye
I hear that a lot of readers are tired of a wall-of-text approach to telling the prologue or the comic setting. So… don't start with a wall of text and go straight to character interaction and let the readers learn along the way?

I agree. In fact, I've made it one of the central aspects of my recent manga, Sehnsucht. Minimize as much narrator dialogue as much as possible, and limit it to just your character's thoughts and talking. Considering the fact that a comic utilizes graphics, it should be easier to avoid having to tell readers everything at the beginning; you can tell a lot more with pictures than you can with words.

I would suggest a few setting scenes. Show a few shots of the environment so that readers can get a feel for the kind of setting and story that's going on; are you on a spaceship or on a field or in a castle or on a beach? Are you trying to show your readers a fantasy world with busy cities, airships and different species of citizens? That's made pretty obvious with just a picture; whoever and whatever is in the universe in your comic, just draw them. Show how it works; no need to explain it; a demonstration is much easier for the readers, even if you have to spend a few pages on it (and it's probably just a few pages of looking, and not so much reading).

I'm considering another device: foreshadowing. Make your readers curious. Add some suspense and feel free to leave out some details so that readers will continue reading, with the hope that you'll eventually satisfy their curiosity. This is the same problem I have with watching some movies; they start off really slow and boring, and don't have enough suspense, so I never feel inclined to watch the rest of it, even if there is lots of action.
Pauca sed matura.
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:16AM
sama at 11:28PM, Dec. 30, 2010
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joined: 12-25-2010
Genejoke
personally I don't like to see a comic that begins with a single page, it isn't enough to form an opinion with, I think it best to start when you have at least 5 story/gag pages ready to go.

Yeah, i agree. It's probably best off to put several pages at once. You can pretty much start off the first page however you like, as long as it follows what should be the same rules as the rest of your comic: to be Interesting and easy to read.

It took a while for us to work out how we wanted to start our comic “Death and Fairy”. But to be interesting and easy to read was really what it came down to.

Live life as the new Death
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:19PM
theshazerin at 1:46AM, Jan. 1, 2011
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joined: 4-6-2010
I think that first impression is crucial in creating a good comic. Your first page gives the readers a rough idea of what's in store for them, so first pages should have amazing artwork as a cover page. Comedy usually works as a good first impression, (although not everyone has the same sense of humour)so if you're doing comic strips or gag comic, something ridiculouly hilarious as the first page should be interesting. =D

Whatever it is, the first pages should always make a strong impact on your readers.
Some examples for a cover page, or prologue pages:

1-“Explosions/Explosive” just look at marvel or dc comic covers and you get the idea.

2-“Strong emotions” like a scene where a girl is looking at the distance, smiling with tears falling down her cheeks, or where a bleeding man is holding on to an unconcious boy for dear life.

3-“Mysterious” like a scene where a man is standing on a rooftop all alone in the night with the full moon looming ahead of him.

4-“Sex appeal” and I don't mean sex or nudity, but a lady with attractive curves on the cover page would definitely draw a crowd. Or for girls, maybe you can draw a bishonen(pretty boy).

There's definitely more, but I hope that helps. ^_^/

last edited on July 14, 2011 4:28PM
Keneticlopx at 4:22PM, Jan. 10, 2011
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posts: 66
joined: 1-21-2009
Beelzy
AshenSkye
I hear that a lot of readers are tired of a wall-of-text approach to telling the prologue or the comic setting. So… don't start with a wall of text and go straight to character interaction and let the readers learn along the way?

I agree. In fact, I've made it one of the central aspects of my recent manga, Sehnsucht. Minimize as much narrator dialogue as much as possible, and limit it to just your character's thoughts and talking. Considering the fact that a comic utilizes graphics, it should be easier to avoid having to tell readers everything at the beginning; you can tell a lot more with pictures than you can with words.

I would suggest a few setting scenes. Show a few shots of the environment so that readers can get a feel for the kind of setting and story that's going on; are you on a spaceship or on a field or in a castle or on a beach? Are you trying to show your readers a fantasy world with busy cities, airships and different species of citizens? That's made pretty obvious with just a picture; whoever and whatever is in the universe in your comic, just draw them. Show how it works; no need to explain it; a demonstration is much easier for the readers, even if you have to spend a few pages on it (and it's probably just a few pages of looking, and not so much reading).

I'm considering another device: foreshadowing. Make your readers curious. Add some suspense and feel free to leave out some details so that readers will continue reading, with the hope that you'll eventually satisfy their curiosity. This is the same problem I have with watching some movies; they start off really slow and boring, and don't have enough suspense, so I never feel inclined to watch the rest of it, even if there is lots of action.

Don't agree to disagree a wall-of-text with a wall-of-text. Hehehehe.
That's not meant to sound as shallow as it does…er….

No text is a good way to get people interested if the pictures are interesting.
Too much to read on a beginning comic isn't that fun :/
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:14PM

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