Comic Talk, Tips and Tricks

Colored or B&W comics?
sidneymt at 8:34PM, Aug. 10, 2009
posts: 6
joined: 8-10-2009
I wonder which is more accepted, colored or B&W?

I know among manga fans color isn't a must, the same for fumetti fans.

Now for a general audience which is better?
My web-comic:
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:35PM
byronrempel at 8:57PM, Aug. 10, 2009
posts: 15
joined: 6-6-2009
i think its all personal choice. i like coloring because i can bring more depth to the images. But I am working on a zombie comic for an anthology that is going to be all black and white.

It's all up to you the comic creator.

probably not the answer you were looking for.
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:35AM
Skullbie at 7:23AM, Aug. 11, 2009
posts: 4,805
joined: 12-9-2007
For getting more readers sticking around/coming in color is better, look at the top viewed webcomics all time or on here-very high number are full color. I myself started getting double hits when i switched to color, i thought it was in a rut and then it kept growing and growing.

But then again a person can have a comic that works 10x better in b/w and have it be their forte. Yours is excellent in that aspect.
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:47PM
skoolmunkee at 9:18AM, Aug. 11, 2009
posts: 7,058
joined: 1-2-2006
It depends on the comic and a person's own skill level I think. Manga works without color beacuse it uses the intermediate method of screentones. If they didn't use screentones the pages would look really boring and empty. A noir comic would look strange in full color. Horror comics are also often black and white, or use very simple color, because darkness on the page can be used to create good effects. Whereas a comic that is meant to be cheerful and upbeat just doesn't hit the right tone in black and white. I think ‘newspaper style’ comics are also well-accepted in black and white because it's a familiar sight.

Either way it depends on how good you are with your chosen method. Doing black and white is very different to color- a lot of people's drawing style and linework wouldn't work in black and white, which I think requires a better mastery of technical aspects because there's no color to ‘pop’ the page or distract from poor lineweight-work. Achieving depth of background can be more difficult in black and white. I'd rather see good black and white than poor color, and I'd rather see poor color than poor black and white.
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:42PM
sidneymt at 11:15AM, Aug. 11, 2009
posts: 6
joined: 8-10-2009
Thanks for the valuables insight

As I had figured colored comics seen to have more popular acceptance while B&W is for segregated public who knows the propose of B&W as a genre (newspaper strip, terror, manga etc)
My web-comic:
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:35PM
ozoneocean at 12:19AM, Aug. 14, 2009
posts: 26,044
joined: 1-2-2004
Yeah, it's a style choice.
It's really as Skool says- what are you best at?
And more than that- what's best for your work?

My stuff would look half finished in BW. A lot of comics though work great in black, white and grey. -look at popular comics here like Eves apple and Skool's, Supernatural lawyer.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:34PM
Eddie Jensen at 5:48AM, Aug. 14, 2009
posts: 256
joined: 6-7-2007
making black and white alone work takes alot of skill, otherwise it feels empty and unfinished and somewhat lacking. if you can pull it off go black and white if you can't then color.
if I was a teapot I think I'd be orange.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:18PM
Hyena H_ll at 6:27AM, Aug. 14, 2009
posts: 1,568
joined: 11-13-2008
Eddie Jensen
making black and white alone work takes alot of skill, otherwise it feels empty and unfinished and somewhat lacking. if you can pull it off go black and white if you can't then color.
Agreed. I think from a design standpoint, working in black and white can be much more challenging. I won't speak further on it because I am extremely biased towards that medium and I'm just going to piss people off if I get up on my B&W4EVA!FTW!! soapbox.

As far as popularity goes, I think it's color hands down. It's just more eye-catching- it tends to have an instant appeal (to most people).

last edited on July 14, 2011 12:52PM
Ironscarf at 7:22AM, Aug. 14, 2009
posts: 1,341
joined: 9-9-2008
I love both but as Hyena and others have said, getting B&W right is harder to pull off. Sometimes I'll spend eons on one face if I'm working B&W, but for colour there's more margin for error: you can sort of suggest things rather than clearly define them all the time.

With black and white, it's all or nothing.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:02PM
Hunchdebunch at 1:22PM, Aug. 14, 2009
posts: 379
joined: 4-22-2009
I personally prefer colour, as for me colour usually seems more defined (not always though!). Also I just find colour nicer to look at. But really it does depend on the comic, I'd find it kind of weird if a really dark and dramatic comic was done in really bright colours, I'd expect it to be dull colours, or black and white.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:51PM
Metalbender92 at 5:34PM, Aug. 14, 2009
posts: 46
joined: 8-29-2008
I just came back from Borders. I was looking through all the manga, and it visually wasn't as impressive because of the lack of color. However, I found a couple series that had really crisp line work with high contrast blacks and a lot of white space. I think you should avoid using black and white if your pages are covered in grey, which most manga is nowadays.
A sketch comic filled with little comedic bundles!
The Meekler Files
Where every day is a hiatus!
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:59PM
cetriya at 8:22PM, Aug. 14, 2009
posts: 178
joined: 5-17-2007
I think most who make/study art tend to favor BW.
All my art friends think BW is best while all my readers want color.

its a debat that always springs up. I just realised though, for the most part, I cant afford color in time or money for the print run.

So untill I hit 1000 page views consecutivly per update (on my main site) then I wont switch anytime soon because I like BW more so
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:39AM
Ryuthehedgewolf at 9:00PM, Aug. 14, 2009
posts: 1,340
joined: 9-2-2007
For most people, it's going to be color. Especially the really nicely done, manga-styled comics that have the cel-shading and all that good stuff. The thing about colored comics, is that there's so much to it.

You could do a simple coloring style.
You can make the colors to fit the mood that your trying to set.

It's a lot better, in my opinion, than doing black and white. Just for those reasons I have listed, and many more. You can do a lot more shading, and make things look a lot more realistic that way.

However, black and white comics have their own unique charm. I, for one, am mostly a black and white artist. Especially for my main comic, Ryu's Krew. I had to develop a cool-looking black/white style because my tablet broke, so I couldn't color. I think in the end, it turned out better.

I've seen some amazing things done with black and white.

My personal choice would be black and white.
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:16PM
sidneymt at 9:14PM, Aug. 14, 2009
posts: 6
joined: 8-10-2009
I'll test on my next update a colored icon and flat colors for the comic. I didn't really liked how the color came out on my last strip here.
My web-comic:
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:35PM
Nicotine at 2:33PM, Aug. 16, 2009
posts: 494
joined: 6-18-2007
When I'm reading a comic, I really don't care if it's in color or not, as long as the style fits the mood of the work.

As for my comic, I choose black and white because I felt it matched the story telling and the themes Like stated before, doing a black and white comic isn't all that easy because of the lack of color. For me, I have to plan carefully so the shades of grey don't mix in too much and wash out part of the scene.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:16PM
Stevesan at 1:41AM, Aug. 18, 2009
posts: 16
joined: 5-7-2007
Depends on what the artist wants to do. I like either black and white or color as long as it's enjoyable to read.

When i make comics i generally color unless it's for a newspaper.

last edited on July 14, 2011 3:58PM
Niccea at 7:48AM, Aug. 19, 2009
posts: 5,628
joined: 8-10-2007
Beating a dead horse, but yeah.

I can't work black and white, I have tried many times but I can't. If I wanted to do somthing in black and white I would probably make the entire comic in color and then hit the desaturate button on photo shop. I know that isn't true black and white, but it makes me happy.

I just like using color because I think that I'm reasonably good at it.

Now from the reader's perspective, I like color there too. I'm a colorful person, I guess. The few comics I keep track of that are in black and white have very good story lines and dialogue or the art is truely amazing that color would be an insult to it.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:14PM
anyannieany at 8:20AM, Aug. 24, 2009
posts: 7
joined: 8-12-2009
accepted ? for sure colored…
I'm a classic 80s inker, i can't help myself with shade lines… however I'm coloring because the general public (non comic reader wouldn't look twice a B&W comic!). we comic fans are more tolerant… my coloring isn't great… but it's necessary…
last edited on July 14, 2011 10:54AM

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